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Tiscali UK has been hit by an intermittent technical problem which has left its customers without access to their email.

The ISP says it became aware of the problem yesterday although The Register has been told by some customers that they began experiencing problems on Monday morning.

A spokeswoman for Tiscali said the company hoped to have the problem resolved "as quickly as possible" but declined to say exactly when that might be.

Tiscali also declined to say exactly how many people have been hit by the glitch.

In a statement Tiscali UK said: "Tiscali customers using email are unfortunately experiencing intermittent delays in sending and receiving emails. The majority of this backlog is now being cleared by our engineers, who will resolve the remainder of this issue imminently.

"Customers have been notified through Tiscali’s service status pages online as well as on service status phone lines.

"Tiscali sincerely apologises for any inconvenience caused."

However, this isn't enough for some of Tiscali's customers. Some have said they'll ditch the ISP while others have even threatened legal action.

One user wrote on a Tiscali forum: "I have counted this morning about 40 emails asking Tiscali Support when (or should I say IF) the email servers come back up will we receive email that has gone 'ahem' missing?

"Please I beg you reply to me and these other poor unfortunate souls to give them a definitive answer and I would appreciate if you don't send your standard reply stating 'We are aware of the problem but are doing **** all about it and are sitting here with our finger up our ****'.

"Your service status states that you are treating the problem as a priority...do me a favour and please give me your definition of 'priority'.

"I really cannot believe that you get away with this level of customer service and ineffectual support. There must be an ISP regulatory board somewhere and if not I will be taking legal advice through my own company's team of solicitors," it said.

This week's email problems are likely to be an embarrassment to Tiscali, which is currently running a multi-million pound TV ad campaign to promote its new Tiscali 10.0 service. ®

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