Understanding consumer preferences, global trends and how pay-to-pay is affecting the most vulnerable Australians is important. Read the facts below learn more about the impact.

Australia Has High Costs for Internet Access

The World Economic Forum’s scoring of ICT capability ranks Australia at just 76 out of 143 countries in terms of fixed broadband affordability. Australia still lags well behind many countries including Vietnam, UK, USA, South Africa, Russia, India, Japan, France and China among many others.

Source: World Economic Forum, The Global Information Technology Report 2015

Limited Internet Access

In Australia, about 30% of the population lives in rural areas. Despite many policy interventions, Australia’s rural areas continue to be at a significant digital disadvantage.

Source: Walton, P (2013), A Digital Inclusion: Empowering all Australians, Australian Journal of Telecommunications and the Digital Economy.

Impacting the Most Vulnerable

Research into disadvantage in Australia indicates, low internet access is correlated strongly to low family income, disability, long term unemployment and unemployment

Source: Vinson et al 2015

Not Everyone Can Afford Home Internet

A recent survey identified that a high number of Australians were not internet users because they could not afford to, with almost 50% stating that they did not have home internet due to affordability.

Source: Acoss, Staying Connected: Digital Divide, 2016

The Digital Divide Deepens

A significant number of disadvantaged people in Australia struggle to have or access the skills, tools or resources needed to digitally engage. Commentators predict that even as the digital divide narrows, for many the ‘divide’ is getting deeper.

Source: Walton, P et. al. (2013)A digital inclusion: Empowering all Australians, Australian Journal of Telecommunications and the Digital Economy

Online Fraud is a Major Issue in Australia

1 in 5 Australians have had their personal information misused and 10% have experienced it in the past year through using online services such as internet banking.

Source: Australian Institute of Criminology, 2013, Identity crime and misuse in Australia

Ulterior Motives

87% of consumers agree that the main reasons companies want to shift to electronic delivery, is to save money not to be environmentally responsible

Source: Two Sides and Toluna, 2013

Sustainable Communication

In a multimedia world, responsibly sourced paper and print may be the most sustainable way to communicate. Alternative media such as Digital also has an environmental impact.

Source: Two Sides, 2015

Digital Exclusion

Digital exclusion is a significant problem in Australia. The ability to navigate and adapt to constant changes in digital technologies is essential before all Australians can confidently replace their reliance on traditional transaction channels.

Source: Digital Government Transformation, Deloitte Access economics (2015)

Consumer’s Want Choice

84% of consumers do not like it when companies take away their right to choose how they are communicated with.

Source: Keep Me Posted UK, Opinium, 2013

Indigenous Australians Are Hardest Hit

Indigenous households in Central Australia are 76% less likely to have Internet access than non-indigenous metropolitan households.

Source: TCrouch et al. (2011)

Low Income Families Suffer

With low income families unable to view online accounts, debts and missed payments can become a real issue. Access to the internet falls to just 57% for households with an income less than $40,000.

Source: Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (2015)

Is Digital Always More Efficient?

59% of customers in a recent survey who received an invoice via e-mail had to be sent a reminder, while only 29% of customers receiving the invoice via mail required a follow-up message.

Source: Direct Mail vs. E-Billing, KMP AU, 2016


Over 95% of greener products commit greenwashing, with paper products especially suffering from unsubstantiated and vague claims, especially from those trying to promote electronic services over paper-based communications.

Source: Terrachoice, The Sins of Greenwashing, 2015

Household Paper Recycling

Paper is recycled more than any other household item. 95% of Australian Households recycle / reuse their paper products.

Source: ABS, 2012, Forestry and Fishing

The growing e-Waste Problem

The amount of electronic products discarded globally has sky rocketed with 20-50 million tonnes generated every year. Australians are among the highest users of technology and e-waste is now the fastest growing component of the municipal waste stream.

Source: : Greenpeace, The e-waste Problem, 2013. ABS, 2013

What the Experts Say

‘I can tell you I don’t use online banking. I don’t think it’s secure. No system is impenetrable, even banking systems’

Source: Dr. Clare Sullivan, Identity Crime Expert and law lecturer at University of South Australia

Comparing Environmental Impact

Reading a newspaper can consume 20% less carbon than viewing news online. If you read the news for more than 30 minutes, it’s more environmentally friendly to read it from a newspaper.

Source: The Swedish Royal Institute for Technology, 2012