Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/03/26/tiscali_uk_in_billing_bungle/

Tiscali UK in billing bungle

I'm not even a customer, says bemused reader

By Tim Richardson

Posted in Broadband, 26th March 2004 11:34 GMT

Tiscali UK is busy sorting out an admin cock-up after it sent out letters confirming the creation of payment details with the ISP.

Snag is, not all of those who received the letters are even Tiscali customers.

One Reg reader told us: "Tiscali sent me a letter today confirming a direct debit mandate has been set up. This is strange as I have not been a customer of Tiscali for two years.

"I called them and the person I spoke to said they have had 'thousands' of calls about this and the letters had been generated by the computer automatically (in error) from an 'old customer list'."

A spokeswoman for Tiscali UK confirmed there had been an error, but insisted that only around a thousand people had received the letters. While some are existing Tiscali punters, others are not, she explained.

She also denied that the ISP had received "'thousands' of calls about this", before agreeing that a similar problem occurred last month too.

A letter apologising for the mistake is to be sent out to those affected.

This week AOL UK admitted that some 60,000 of its punters were wrongly billed for their Internet service following a cock-up at the company.

It seems a "technical problem" hit the company's billing run last Friday, resulting in hapless customers being billed three times for their March subscription. ®

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