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BT Admits Mistake with Misleading Broadband Cancellation Letters

Posted: 24th Oct, 2008 By: MarkJ
Last week we reported that ex-customers of BT's Total Broadband service had accused the operator of sending "deliberately" misleading cancellation letters, which incorrectly threatened end-users with the additional termination of their phone line service despite remaining within BT’s voice line network (original news).

BT has now completed their investigation and a spokesman confirmed to us yesterday afternoon that the letters were indeed issued in error due to an unspecified administrative problem:

The BT spokesperson said: "The short of it is we've established that our system has sent out the wrong letter in error - instead of a broadband cease letter, it's sent out a PSTN cease letter instead. We're in the process of fixing this now.

There's no substance to the claim that we're breaching the Ofcom rules on separation of business functions, though. The file reference on the letter [PSTN_CEASE - 15/06/2007] is based on a standard BT Wholesale notification feed that they provide to all service providers.

The purpose of this feed is so that the ISP is notified of a change or cease to the PSTN line subsequently affecting the customer's broadband service. The PSTN line may not necessarily be with the ISP, but ceasing PSTN will, by default, also end broadband service and so the ISP will need to notify the customer.
"

BT has apologised for the time it took to indentify the problem and to date only a small number of customers appear to have been affected, although precise figures are unknown.
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