Smart meters being installed in UK homes must not create a barrier to consumers switching energy suppliers, regulator Ofgem has said.
By 2020, every home in Britain will be fitted with a smart meter - a device that shows exactly how much gas and electricity is being used.
Installation of the devices has already started in some households.
As a result, Ofgem plans to step up protection, so consumers are not tied to the supplier that fitted the meter.
"It is important that where a customer has a smart meter installed, this does not create a barrier to them switching supplier," the regulator said in a consultation document published on Monday.