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Fax machines declared obsolete by Ofcom

Staff Reporter
January 15, 2023

Telcos are no longer required to provide fax support to customer lines

The fax machine is going the way of the camcorder and video player. Telecoms providers BT and KCOM will no longer have  to provide fax services on their networks. 

Ofcom has changed the obligations requiring the telcos to provide fax services because the fax machine “has been overtaken by email and document sharing software that offers the same or better functionality”.

There are two designated telecom providers responsible for universal service in the UK – BT and KCOM (in the Hull area only). This change does not mean that fax services will stop working immediately, but there will no longer be an obligation on BT and KCOM to provide fax support.

Ofcom picks BT and KCOM for universal broadband
BT and KCOM: no longer be an obligation to provide fax support.

Said Ofcom:

“The current USO (Universal Service Obligation) was set out in 2003 when fax machines were more prevalent and email and instant messaging were less ubiquitous.

“So, at that time it was important the USO required BT and KCOM to provide fax services. Alternatives to fax machines are now more widely available and migration of networks to IP technology means fax services can no longer be guaranteed to work in the same way. This change doesn’t mean fax services will stop working immediately, but current fax users should look for alternatives”.


BT Kcom Ofcom

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