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Consumer body Which? has warned British holiday makers to be careful of potentially running up enormous phone bills by leaving their data roaming capacity turned on when they are on holiday.

The organisation has said that bills could rack up even in roaming-enabled phones are just left switched on in suitcases and not actively used, due to applications and downloads automatically running in the background.

Which? executive director Richard Lloyd said that phone companies need to do more to highlight the cost and usage of data to their customers, particularly in light of the new rules on data roaming and mobile phones that came into force across the EU this month.

“Using your mobile overseas can be hugely expensive but there are things consumers can do to keep costs down, like using wi-fi where available and turning off data-roaming,” he said. “But we also want to see phone companies doing everything they can to make consumers aware of exactly how much data they’re using and the costs.”