Tuesday, April 22, 2008


I very rarely use the blog for reflections on my private life, but this is simply too good to pass.

A relation of mine, who is 83 years old, virtually house bound and registered blind, received a letter from a debt collection agency, on behalf of one of the major mobile phone companies. Demanding immediate payment of almost £1,000, a huge sum of money to him.

Obviously, this was a case of fraud/identity theft, it happens all too often,unfortunately. Not sure quite what credit checks the mobile phone company do, as the surname was spelt slightly wrong, no other correspondence had ever been received relating to this and he owns neither a bank, nor credit card.

To then let a "new" account, apparently the contract was taken out in January, opened by an octogenarian, who has never previously pocessed a mobile, run up a bill of £1k is both strange and not a little irresponsible, but fair enough.

When I say, he has never owned one, he is not even 100% sure what one is !

We called the debt collection company on his behalf and despite some pretty rude treatment, they agreed to stop any action, but were adamant that we had to call the mobile company's fraud department. This is the unbelievable part, you call them, the phone is answered and you choose an option, so you are connected, then the internal line just rings and rings. First time 28 minutes ... no answer, second time 22 minutes and so on, if you have called using one of their own phones, there is a set charge per call, everyone else , remember, no one from my family has any dealings with this company, has to pay a premium rate per minute ! This, to report a fraud, that they are responsible for, it is simply unreal !

This was bad enough, so two hours out of my/our life and not a little expense, but when we finally speak to someone in the fraud department, they are incredibly rude, agressive and offer no apology for any of this.

This is customer service at it's very best, I will not name them (anagram of 2O) or the buffoon I spoke to in their fraud department, the biggest fraud is the cost of phoning them !

Back to my day job.

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