Telecommunications cabling and the NBN | ACMA

Telecommunications cabling and the NBN

Telecommunications cabling is the responsibility of either the network owner (including NBN Co, Optus and Telstra) or the customer, depending on which side of the network boundary (NB) the cabling is located.

The NB is the physical demarcation point between telecommunications customer cabling (which is regulated by the ACMA) and a carrier's network cabling (which is not regulated by the ACMA).

Legacy telecommunications connections 

In the case of the legacy copper network, the NB point is typically the first telephone socket within a residential premises or, in the case of commercial premises, the customer side of the main distribution frame (MDF).

Types of NBN connections 

In the NBN environment, the location of the NB point varies, as it is dependent on the technology being used:

  • Fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) installation—the NB is located on the customer side of the network termination device (NTD). The NTD is usually installed inside each customer premises.
  • Fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) or a fibre-to-the-kerb (FTTC) installation—the NB is the first telephone socket within residential premises.
  • Fibre-to-the-building (FTTB)—the NB is located on the customer's side of the MDF.
  • Hybrid fibre co-axial (HFC) installation—the NB is the 'F-Type' wall connector within residential premises.

Cabling within premises connected to the NTD (FTTP installation), the VDSL modem or the retail service provider’s voice gateway (FTTN or FTTC installation), the coax modem (HFC installation), or the MDF (FTTB installation)—for example, to connect other devices in the customer’s premises—is the responsibility of the customer.

Cabling from the NTD (FTTP installation), the first phone socket within residential premises (FTTN or FTTC installation), the 'F-Type' wall connector (HFC installation), or the MDF (FTTB installation) to the street and the wider telecommunications network is the responsibility of the carrier.

Who can install customer cabling? 

Under the ACMA’s Cabling Provider Rules:

A person installing, maintaining, or repairing telecommunications customer cabling must be registered with an ACMA-accredited cabling registrar before they can perform cabling work; and the cabling work must be performed in accordance with the Wiring Rules.

If a person wishes to complain about the installation of a carrier's network cabling, the matter should first be raised directly with the network owner—NBN Co or other relevant carrier. If this does not resolve the matter, a person may then contact the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman.

More information 

Find out more about the ACMA’s role in regulating telecommunications customer cabling.

More information on telecommunications customer cabling, specifically related to NBN installations, can be found in the Communications Alliance industry guideline G649:2017 Cabling Existing Telecommunications Services in the Customer’s Premises for the nbn™.

Disclaimer: Some of the content on this page may not be current. You should not rely solely on this information.

Last updated: 03 April 2018