Ofcom asks Sky News and ITV to 'explain actions' after criticism by Nicola Bulley's family
Ofcom says it has written to Sky News and ITV "to ask them to explain their actions" following comments made by the family of Nicola Bulley.
The media watchdog said it had contacted the broadcasters after the family questioned the role of the media during the investigation.
In a statement, Ofcom said: "We are extremely concerned to hear the comments made by the family of Nicola Bulley about two broadcast licensees.
"We have written to ITV and Sky to ask them to explain their actions.
"We will then assess whether any further action is required."
On Sunday, police recovered Ms Bulley's body from the River Wyre, Lancashire, following an extensive three-week search operation.
The 45-year-old mortgage adviser had last been seen on Friday 27 January while walking on a footpath by the river in St Michael's on Wyre.
Following formal identification of Ms Bulley's body, the family released a statement through Lancashire Police on Monday.
In the statement, the family said: "We tried last night (Sunday) to take in what we had been told in the day, only to have Sky News and ITV making contact with us directly when we expressly asked for privacy.
"They again have taken it upon themselves to run stories about us to sell papers and increase their own profits.
"It is shameful they have acted in this way. Leave us alone now."
The family also paid tribute to Ms Bulley in their statement, describing her as "the centre of our world" and "the one who made our lives so special".
Ms Bulley was walking her dog, Willow, beside the River Wyre when she was last seen more than three weeks ago.
The springer spaniel was found shortly after, along with Ms Bulley's mobile phone, which was discovered on a bench beside a steep riverbank. The phone was still connected to a work conference call.
Police said their main working hypothesis was that Ms Bulley had fallen into the river.
Lancashire Police launched an extensive search of the river, which ended on Sunday when a body was recovered from the river, around a mile from where Ms Bulley was last seen.
It is understood that a man and a woman walking their dog near to the river called the police after seeing a person in the water, with officers then launching a search.
Police previously said Ms Bulley had suffered "significant issues with alcohol" which had been brought on by "ongoing struggles with the menopause".
The revelation of such personal information sparked criticism from many, including Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, but Ms Bulley's family said they were "aware beforehand that Lancashire Police released a statement with some personal details about our Nikki".
The home secretary said she will see what Lancashire Police's own inquiries "come back with" when asked if there would be an external review into the force's handling of Ms Bulley's disappearance.
Suella Braverman said she was not "wholly satisfied" with responses given by the chief constable when she asked for an explanation as to why some of Ms Bulley's personal details were released to the public.