TalkTalk has declared that they will undertake a full investigation into allegations that they have attempted to ‘poach’ customers from rivals PlusNet.
The problem was first reported on PlusNet’s community website, after numerous complaints that customers could not connect to the internet. An investigation discovered that they had all recently signed up to talk services with TalkTalk, owned by Carphone Warehouse. Further investigation suggested that TalkTalk had not only taken control of their phone services but also their broadband too, hence why the PlusNet customers were not getting online.
A PlusNet spokesperson on their community website said "Strangely, none of our customers recalled ever opting to take the TalkTalk Broadband service. Nor did any of them remember being contacted for consent to have their broadband service stolen away from them. If they had, why would they be calling us confused over why they cannot connect?"
It’s unknown how TalkTalk managed to take these customers, especially as a MAC (Migration Authorisation Code) is usually required. However, TalkTalk confirmed that they do not need a MAC to move customers to their network as they operate separately to BT.
TalkTalk have taken these allegations about poaching customers very seriously and released a statement on the matter outlining: “We naturally take reports of customer 'poaching' extremely seriously. We don't connect anyone to our unbundled network unless our records show that they have ordered TalkTalk broadband and we can confirm that we don't migrate voice-only customers to our unbundled network…TalkTalk currently operates at significantly below the industry average for alleged incidents of this kind and we are working with our industry partners to address these concerns and will undertake a full investigation of any issues raised with us."
PlusNet received 20 reports of this case in June and is planning to raise a formal complaint on the matter with Ofcom, the respective regulatory body.