MyBroadband recently received a complaint from a Telkom customer who encountered problems when upgrading his ADSL line.
The customer first took out a 4Mbps ADSL and voice package with Telkom in November 2017.
In February 2018, he decided to upgrade his line speed so that he could get a Netflix subscription.
Upon contacting Telkom to facilitate this, the customer was told that his line speed would be upgraded shortly. He also asked Telkom for a LIT Box to enable him to watch Netflix.
Router and billing problems
A few days later, the user received a router instead of the requested Telkom LIT Box. Upon informing Telkom, the company told him to keep the router and sent through the LIT Box.
His next bill showed that he was charged for the router, but Telkom was quick to reverse this charge after discovering the error – and informed the customer that he could keep the router regardless of the charge reversal.
Satisfied with a new router, a 10Mbps ADSL line, and a LIT Box, it seemed as if all the customer’s requests were actioned.
Contract terms changed
In February 2020, however, when the customer inspected his Telkom account he discovered his 24-month ADSL contract had not ended.
His ADSL line was on a 24-month contract, and originally activated during November 2017. This means he should have been moved to a month-to-month package during November 2019.
Instead, he found that when Telkom had upgraded his line from 4Mbps to 10Mbps in February 2018, the company had cancelled his existing contract and given him a new one – effectively extending the length of his contract period.
When asked if he could cancel the contract and be billed on a month-to-month basis, Telkom told him that he would be charged a penalty fee.
After contacting a number of call centre staff to explain the situation, he was not able to resolve the issue. He then contacted MyBroadband.
During the course of MyBroadband’s investigation, the customer was contacted by Telkom and told that his complaint would be resolved as soon as possible.
No comment from Telkom
MyBroadband asked Telkom for feedback on the complaint, but the company did not respond by the time of publication.
This latest case follows Telkom customers reporting a number of issues with the company’s billing systems in recent years.
This is especially true for customers who cancelled their packages but continued to be billed by Telkom.
These users were unable to get Telkom to stop billing them, and if they refused to continue paying for cancelled services, they would be blacklisted with the credit bureaus.
In 2019, Telkom said it had refined its blacklisting process to give customers the benefit of the doubt.
“We added extra checks in the process to remove customers that potentially requested a cancellation from the list,” Telkom said.
“If we are not sure, customers receive the benefit of the doubt and are excluded.”