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Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.

JayG
Pro
Posts: 1,140
Thanks: 143
Fixes: 6
Registered: ‎30-10-2011

Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.

Date            Time       Number           Call Type      Duration        Cost(£)    Late rated
30/09/2019 13:38:41 114XXXXXXX  UK Landline  00:02:01       0              No
19/09/2019 11:47:44 123                   Other           00:00:01       0.5           No
19/09/2019 17:06:58 114XXXXXXX  UK Landline  00:00:12       0              No

 

I'm aware there have been several other threads on this topic, but reading through them doesn't give me a consistent view of how Plusnet responds to customers being charged for calls apparently made by some Openreach engineers when line testing.

Some have received a refund, others seem to have given up the struggle and retired hurt (and no doubt also very angry.)

I am the only possible phone user in my house, neither had nor have any ongoing fault investigation, and only discovered that '123' was the Timeline speaking clock after the 50p charge mysteriously appeared on my latest phone bill. I did see a Kelly Communications van parked outside a near neighbour around that date, but can't be certain it was the exact same date and time.

(Is there a clue in that the call is listed as 'other', and duration just 1 second?)

OK, it's only 50p, but in theory it could have been almost any multiple of that amount - I don't see any fundamental difference between this and common theft.

Would a Plusnet staffer be good enough to explain Plusnet's current policy on these phantom charges, including how they are pressing OR to either stop the practice, or at least ensure the call is not billed to the innocent victim?

Needless to say, I would also like you to arrange a refund to my account.

5 REPLIES 5
MasterOfReality
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 1,640
Fixes: 57
Registered: ‎26-03-2018

Re: Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.

Hi @JayG 

Would a Plusnet staffer be good enough to explain Plusnet's current policy on these phantom charges, including how they are pressing OR to either stop the practice, or at least ensure the call is not billed to the innocent victim?

 

Needless to say, I would also like you to arrange a refund to my account.

I can raise this as feedback to the relevant people to show that another customer has fell victim to this erroneous charge, and I can credit the 50p to your account balance. 

 

I'm sorry that I'm unable to give a more well rounded reply than this, but it really is all I can offer at the moment in time - as soon as we have more news on the topic we will update the various threads accordingly. 

 

Kind Regards, 

MoR

 

JayG
Pro
Posts: 1,140
Thanks: 143
Fixes: 6
Registered: ‎30-10-2011

Re: Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.

Thanks for your reply - a refund is a start, but until your suppliers and their contractors can get their act together and stop customers being charged for 123 calls they haven't made it's likely to happen again, especially, as I've already mentioned, that whatever fault was being investigated wasn't even on my line. 

MasterOfReality
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 1,640
Fixes: 57
Registered: ‎26-03-2018

Re: Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.

Thanks for getting back to me @JayG 

 

As I said above, as we are unable to provide any information, update or reply from the suppliers - at the moment in time anything other than telling customers that we are aware of this happening, treating each on a case by case basis, feeding it back each time to show numbers, apologising, and crediting the difference would be guesswork and that is never the way to go. 

 

Kind Regards, 

MoR

198kHz
Seasoned Hero
Posts: 5,591
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Registered: ‎30-07-2008

Re: Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.


@JayG wrote:

...whatever fault was being investigated wasn't even on my line. 


That's usually the case. The engineer would have been trying to find a spare pair to fix a fault on someone else's line.


@JayG wrote:

...but until your suppliers and their contractors can get their act together and stop customers being charged for 123 calls they haven't made it's likely to happen again...

...and again and again ad infinitum.

This has been going on since the dawn of automatic exchanges, but has only entered the public domain with the advent of itemised billing. I think Australia have the right idea - just switch it off - it's not really necessary and would solve the problem - at the first stroke. Laugh

198 (ex BT)

 

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JayG
Pro
Posts: 1,140
Thanks: 143
Fixes: 6
Registered: ‎30-10-2011

Re: Billing for 'phantom' calls to 123.


@198kHz wrote:

.This has been going on since the dawn of automatic exchanges, but has only entered the public domain with the advent of itemised billing. I think Australia have the right idea - just switch it off - it's not really necessary and would solve the problem - at the first stroke. Laugh

198 (ex BT)

 


 

A good plan on the face of it, although from my current perspective it still appears to be quite popular, at least among some BTOR engineers!  Roll_eyes Knuppel