Plusnet has today been fined £880,000 by Ofcom for continuing to bill more than a thousand ex-customers.
The telecoms regulator found that Plusnet, which is owned by BT, had an error with its billing system that meant it continued to charge some customers for their landline or broadband after they’d cancelled their service.
The error affected 1,025 customers who were collectively overcharged more than £500,000 in total.
Ofcom says Plusnet has made “repeated attempts” to refund affected ex-customers by letter and by phone. However, only 356 customers have been refunded a total of £212,140, which included interest at a rate of 4% for each customer.
The remaining funds have been donated to a dozen local charities.
A spokesperson for Plusnet says: “We are very sorry and would like to apologise to the 1,025 customers affected. We reported this ourselves to Ofcom, and made every effort to contact these customers to arrange a full refund before the investigation started.
“We would also like to reassure all customers this was an isolated historic issue and we have implemented a number of new robust measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”
Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom’s consumer group director, adds: “There can be no margin for error, and no excuses, when it comes to billing customers correctly.
“This fine should serve as a reminder to telecoms companies that they must adhere to Ofcom’s billing rules at all times, or face the consequences.”