MyBroadband was recently contacted by a reader who ran into issues during the installation of her fibre line.
The reader requested that we did not disclose their personal details and the details of the parties involved, as the matter is not yet resolved.
Third-party fibre installers arrived at the reader’s home and said they were there to install the reader’s fibre line – which she had ordered through a local ISP.
The reader was told by the installers that they must be paid in cash for the installation, and they quoted her R2,200.
However, the reader argued that the ISP offered free fibre installation for her order.
Despite this, the reader paid the fee to the installers – and was not provided with an invoice.
The installers promised to send an invoice either that night or the next day, but the customer is yet to receive any such documentation.
After contacting her ISP, the reader was told that the installation fee should not have been charged and was meant to be free.
When she asked the ISP for an installation refund, however, they said they cannot reimburse her cash payment to the installers.
The reader was told that to be reimbursed for the cash payment, the ISP required an invoice as proof of payment.
To find out what the reader should have done, MyBroadband asked several ISPs for advice on the matter.
Cybersmart told MyBroadband that paying cash to the installer has never been an option.
“Customers are billed after the installation has been completed. An official invoice will be provided to the customer at that point,” said Cybersmart.
Cybersmart said customers who were told by contractors to pay them in cash for the installation should refuse to do so.
“They should immediately contact our implementation manager or our contact centre and report the incident,” Cybersmart added.
RSAWEB said it does not charge customers any upfront fees, as all signups take place online.
It said customers will never be required to pay the installer of their fibre directly in cash.
“It is a safety and security issue for both the (legitimate) installer and the customer,” said RSAWEB.
The ISP recommended swift and significant action on the side of the customer if their installer requests payment directly.
“Immediately call your armed response security provider and get them to escort the individual offsite,” said RSAWEB.
“Ensure you are safe and then call our support centre or the fibre network operator to verify the individual.”