Media watchdog Ofcom has launched an investigation into ITV after the broadcasting giant admitted that some competition entries weren't included 'in a number' of their prize draws.

Here's what you need to know.

How many competitions are affected - and when did they take place?

A total of six of ITV's premium rate competitions between 2014 and 2019 were identified following an internal audit by the broadcaster.

While viewers are charged £2 to enter its competitions via text message, phone or online - entries made by post are free.

However, ITV have admitted that some postal competition entries were not included in some prize draws and reported itself to Ofcom following the discovery.

According to The Times, on at least six occasions viewers who submitted entries to ITV contests by post had no chance of winning a prize.

ITV hasn't revealed which competitions, nor the exact programmes they were advertised on, but the broadcaster typically runs the contests on shows such as Good Morning Britain, Lorraine, This Morning, Loose Women and The X Factor.

Swindon Advertiser: Daytime show This Morning. Picture: ITVDaytime show This Morning. Picture: ITV

What have ITV said about the investigation?

Following their audit, ITV said they have since "implemented measures to address the problem".

In a statement, ITV told The Times: "The integrity of all viewer competitions run by ITV is an absolute priority for us.

"However, it is important to note the scale and nature of this particular issue, which affected only a very small number of our viewer competitions over a number of years."

What have Ofcom said?

In a short statement issued on Monday, August 10, Ofcom said: "We are investigating whether ITV breached our rules and licence requirements on viewer competitions."

The media watchdog Ofcom has an option of whether or not to impose fines of up to £250,000 or five per cent of annual revenue (whichever is greater), once their invetigation ends.

ITV were previously fined following incidents in 2007

ITV revealed in 2007 that premium rate competitions and phone votes on shows such as Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway were rigged.

Ofcom then ordered ITV to pay a total of £5.7m, which at the time was a record sanction imposed on a broadcaster by the media watchdog.