Surprise service switch
An unexpected call leads to unexpected change of service provider.
Gary* received a call from a sales representative asking if he would like to switch his mobile phone provider. After going through the costs involved, Gary told the representative that he would call his current provider and compare the offer. After speaking with his current provider, Gary decided that he was already getting a good deal. Gary called the sales representative back and advised that he was going to stick with his current provider.
Soon after this, Gary received email correspondence from the new provider confirming his transfer. Gary replied to the email confirming that he did not authorise a service transfer and he also called the new provider advising that he did not agree to the change. Despite his call and email, his phone number was ported across to the new provider.
Gary spent a significant amount of time contacting both providers trying to reverse the transfer and ended up without any phone service for three days. The new provider apologised for the confusion and said all costs would be waived, however Gary did not believe there should have been any costs to begin with as he had not authorised the transfer.
Gary requested compensation for the unauthorised transfer and for the time he had to personally spend on having the connection reverted back to his original provider. The new provider refused to provide compensation and the complaint was referred to TDR.
TDR began looking into the matter, highlighting that there are two industry codes and set rules for transferring customers between service providers.
TDR’s Resolution Practitioner arranged mediation, through that process Gary and the new provider came to an agreement. The new provider agreed to provide Gary with a formal apology and to cover the costs of his phone plan while he was without service. The phone provider also agreed to educate their sales team around the error.
*Names have been changed to protect our customers’ identities.