Optus fixes unmetered YouTube loophole for prepaid customers


Optus says it has now solved a technical limitation that unintentionally allowed some of its prepaid customers unmetered access to YouTube.

In a statement, the telco confirmed that until September 13, a number of prepaid customers using the company’s ‘Open Network’ were able to access popular video site YouTube without usage counting towards their monthly data allowance.

“Due to technical limitations, a number of Optus’ prepaid customers have been receiving un-metered access to YouTube as part of the data component of their prepaid mobile plans,” a spokesperson for the company said.

The spokesperson confirmed that from September 13 the limitation has been resolved, with affected Optus customers receiving notification via SMS in the days prior to the changes being implemented.

It means prepaid customers accessing YouTube will now incur charges, or will eat into their data allowance if they have one. For most, data is $1.32 per MB, but for some on deals including Woolworths Prepaid Cap, Turbo Cap Plus and Boost Long Time, charges could be anywhere up to $2 per MB.

However the company says some prepaid customers will still have unmetered access to the site if they are using a prepaid offering that specifically provides unmetered access to the video portal.

In April this year, Optus made a similar announcement that customers on contracts would be receiving metered access to YouTube unless otherwise specified.

And in June, Vodafone revealed it’d soon close a similar loophole that had been allowing customers access unmetered access to peer-to-peer connections, VoIP and internet services which “require a personal log-in” such as online banking and Microsoft’s Hotmail client.