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Demon chases overdue accounts

Admits some bills may have been sent in error

Business security measures using SSL

Demon has admitted that a "very small number" of its customers might have been invoiced incorrectly, after it carried out a sweep on overdue accounts recently. It seems some invoices may have been sent out in error and, as a result, it's set up an email address for people to contact if they think they may be affected by the snafu.

The ISP's admission follows a story last week which told how one Demon punter was billed £1,200 after it failed to collect cash for four years. At the time, a spokeswoman for the firm, which is owned by Scottish telco Thus, said this was an isolated case and that any repetition was "unlikely".

Not according to the sack full of emails received by El Reg over the weekend:

"I am one of those 'unlikely' customers who Demon forgot to bill," wrote one customer, who said she was unaware that Demon had stopped collecting cash from her account in February 2005.

"Imagine my surprise about a week ago when I received a letter from Demon's debt collection agency telling me that I owed £240 and threatening to cut off my service. The letter said that an earlier letter had been sent, but I had never received any such letter. I immediately paid the debt, embarrassed by the whole situation, but it took some time to get the matter straightened out with Demon's outsourced call centre.

"Eventually, Demon established a new direct debit for me, because it said that 'somehow' it had entered the old number in incorrectly. When I spoke to my bank, though, I was told that no one had tried to collect that amount for an erroneous bank account number or any other bank account; Demon had simply stopped collecting the money."

And then there's this one: "I have just had to pay my last 16 months bills, nearly £400. My card expired and I entered in new details to the site in 2004 and left it at that. Each month I received the regular invoice which only ever stated £24.99 owing. All of a sudden out of the blue I got my line disconnected. I then discovered that I owed this money to them. Needing access, I paid the money. To add insult to injury, the following week I received nine letters on the same day (two weeks ago), all dated the same asking for the £400."

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