EnergyAustralia and Alinta have each been fined for providing inaccurate retailer complaint data to the energy watchdog.

“Retailers need to carefully examine their information and data, prior to submitting it to the AER, so that stakeholders relying on that data are not misled,” AER chair Paul Conboy said.

“Where we find breaches of the data reporting provisions of the Retail Law, we will investigate and take action.

“We expect retailers to have adequate and robust data governance systems in place to ensure that they are meeting their obligations under the Retail Law.”

These latest fines follow a Fairfax Media report earlier this month uncovering inaccurate figures on electricity complaints were provided to the Australian Energy Regulator by at least one retailer.

This brought into question the number of households and businesses that had complained about retailer behavior at a time of historically high electricity prices.

However, these latest fines leveled down on Tuesday are unrelated to, and on top of, the inaccuracies reported by Fairfax Media, the AER said.

In April 2017, Origin was also fined $20,000 for failing to submit performance accurate data on time.

“Having timely and accurate market performance data is critical to the work of the AER,” Ms. Conboy said.

“It allows us to examine trends and identify areas of concern in the Australian retail energy market.

“Timely and accurate data on key indicators such as customer numbers, the assistance given to customers experiencing payment difficulties, and the number of customers disconnected for non-payment is necessary to develop the best policies to protect customers and ensure companies are meeting their legal obligations.”