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BT Confirms Migration Help For Biscit Customers

Posted: 17th Mar, 2007 By: MarkJ
Much as reported on Thursday (here), BT has now made their assistance to Biscit's BT based customers official. From Monday the operator will be able to supply Biscit's BTWholesale based users with a migration code, although unofficially they've already been doing this:

From next Monday these 6,500 customers will be able to call a special helpline to obtain a Migration Authorisation Code, or MAC, from BT Wholesale. This service will enable them to move to a new broadband service provider of their choice and will help to minimise disruption and downtime to their broadband service. Details of the helpline will be available from a web page that these customers of Biscit will be re-directed to from next Monday.

BT Wholesale recognises that consumers and businesses are dependent on communications services and that many customers of Biscit will be concerned that they will be left stranded without these services. BT Wholesale has therefore volunteered to step in so that those Biscit customers whose underlying service is provided by a direct connection to BT Wholesale’s network, are able to switch to a new provider as quickly and as painlessly as possible.

From next Monday, these broadband customers of Biscit will be re-directed to a web page where they will be provided with a telephone number to contact BT Wholesale to request a MAC. The webpage will be available for a period of seven days. The customer can present the MAC to their chosen broadband service provider to obtain a new service. By using the MAC process, Biscit customers will be able to switch to a new broadband service and minimise their service downtime.

Customers of Biscit for telephone services are also advised to look for an alternative supplier, as from today they will be unable to make outbound calls, with the exception of 999 calls. Customers will continue to receive incoming calls while they look for a supplier to provide them with a full service.

Biscit Internet is the latest in a series of ISPs to fall victim to the pressures of an increasingly competitive broadband market. As a key provider of wholesale broadband services to over 700 UK service providers, BT Wholesale has an obligation in these cases to protect its financial interests, whilst at the same time balancing the needs of end-customers.

Gaby Heppner-Logan, BT Director Regulatory Affairs, said, “We recognise that Biscit’s customers will be concerned about losing their services. That’s why BT Wholesale is going the extra mile in this difficult situation. BT Wholesale is doing all it can to make sure that affected customers are supported by extending the deadline for disconnection and providing MACs directly to customers. This MAC helpdesk for Biscit customers will be available from next Monday and I would encourage customers of Biscit to use the service from that date. We are continuing to work closely with Ofcom and the administrator to ensure the adequate protection of Biscit’s customers.”

Sources indicate that despite the relative quiet from BT and Ofcom this week, both have been working towards being able to do this without running into any legal problems. Certain comments suggest that various parties had become unhappy with the Administrators handling of the situation.

Unfortunately this still leaves the other half of Biscit's subscriber base in a pit of uncertainty, although at least EurISP based users (Yourcomms/Maxsurf) still have an active connection. We understand that Ofcom has noted EurISP's refusal to issue MAC's and will hopefully be investigating.

ISPreview would also just like to thank BT’s Ben Verwaayen for his efforts in the matter.
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