Sort it out
TalkTalk/Tiscali was fined £3 million by telecoms regulator Ofcom today after it was found that it continued to bill 3,000 of its customers incorrectly, having been told to get its house in order in November last year.
Following over 1,000 complaints, TalkTalk, which acquired Tiscali in 2009, was found to have charged over 62,000 of its customers for services they had not received. Ofcom stepped in and told it to rectify the situation by 2 December or else.
But according to the latest Ofcom announcement, while TalkTalk did make some tweaks to its CRM system, it still incorrectly billed almost 3,000 of its customers between 2 December 2010 and 4 March 2011. The consequent fine equates to a grand for each transgression.
In the original ruling TalkTalk was also required to compensate affected customers, which has cost over £2.5 million so far, so this fine more than doubled the cost of this persistent error to TalkTalk. And it could have been more, with Ofcom empowered to fine companies up to ten percent of their relevant turnover, but it was reduced to reflect the fact that some effort has been put in.
The £3 million will end up in the hands of the UK treasury. Now we just need Ofcom to find 300,000 more naughty ISPs and our debt problems are solved.