Consumer Watchdog Which? have spoken out against the news that TalkTalk customers are reportedly being charged for cancelling their contracts with the company.
This follows the recent cyberattack against TalkTalk and its website where customer details were compromised, and the “significant and sustained” hack raised questions over how well the telecoms agent protected customers’ personal data.
As a result to the attack, some affected TalkTalk users said they wanted to cancel their contracts and switch provider, but there have been reports that the company is charging people up to £250 for the cancellation.
The Mail on Sunday heard from TalkTalk customer Dawn Palmer, she told the newspaper that she had found the whole experience “appalling”.
“They said my account doesn’t run out until July 2016 so I’d have to pay an early-leavers’ penalty,” she said.
Consumer watchdog Which? said TalkTalk customers affected by the breach should not have to pay a penalty fee to break their contract.
Richard Lloyd, executive director, said: “We expect that any affected TalkTalk customers who want to leave their contract should be able to do so without penalty.
“Nobody should lose out as a result of this breach, so TalkTalk should also look at what more it needs to do for its customers, including appropriate compensation for those affected. It’s important people are treated fairly.”
Dido Harding, Chief Executive of the TalkTalk Group said it was “too early” to start addressing the issue of compensation but confirms the company has been working to ensure all of its customers have been informed that their personal data may have been compromised following a cyber attack.
Harding says that customers should be wary if they receive an unexpected phone call purporting to be from TalkTalk and asking for personal information. She says this call would not come from a TalkTalk representative, but rather someone who could be attempting identity theft.
Source: Video: The Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/business/video/2015/oct/23/talktalk-ceo-dido-harding-cyber-attack-video