Update: BEREC publishes a new report in 2021 on the status of internet capacity, regulatory and other measures in view of the Covid-19 crisis.
Social distancing measures across the EU have seen citizens and business shift their activities online. Consequently, connectivity networks are experiencing heightened traffic and could come under strain now when it is most vital they stay operational.
In a joint statement, the Commission and the Body of European Regulators of Electronic Communications (BEREC) have set up a special reporting mechanism and regularly monitor the Internet traffic situation in each Member State. They called upon the cooperation of national regulatory authorities to share data on the impact of the crisis on telecommunications networks and the regulatory actions taken so far. The aim of this joint action is to prevent congestion and ensure the open Internet, which guarantees everyone has access to the internet and that all traffic (i.e. voice calls, video streaming, messaging, emails, etc.) is treated equally.
Both also welcome and note the customer-friendly, as well as technical measures taken by telecoms operators in several Member States.
The Commission and BEREC assess the reports from the special monitoring process and continue to follow-up the evolution of traffic and user experience. From 15 May, the reports include a brief overview of digital apps that have been introduced in several Member States to monitor the spread of coronavirus. From 07 May, the reports also include an update on further actions, such as information campaigns, providing consumers with practical recommendations on the contribution consumers could make to avoid congestion issues.