Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Cable & Wireless Customer Service

Open Letter to Daryl Jackson, Cable and Wireless.

In April 2006 I was using regular telephone service on 457-5416 and ADSL internet service.

In May 2006 I spoke to your customer service and told them my wife and I had to go to the US for medical reasons and would not be using the internet service. I needed to continue the phone service so our caretaker could call us in the US in case of emergency, and I wanted to retain the email address (eklund.svg@vincysurf.com) for future use. The best thing to do seemed to be to change the ADSL to the minimum plan dial-up, and then have it transferred back to ADSL on our return.

While we were gone our caretaker noticed that our bills were very high, and that we were being billed for BOTH dial-up AND ADSL even though neither was being used. When he brought that to the attention of your customer service, they cut off my access to webmail from our US internet connection. I wrote him about that and he notified your people and, in a few days, webmail service was resumed. Later I found my bill had a credit of 700ECD for the overcharges.

On October 4th we returned and, in a few days, I was able to access the web by dial-up. I then went to your customer care people and requested that my ADSL service be restored. They immediately cut off my dial-up and it took more than two weeks to get a technician to come out to activate the ADSL.

I had no access to the internet for that two weeks during which I needed to transfer funds in my US Bank Account, be in touch with my agent who was writing checks that might have bounced, be in touch with our attorney who was finalizing a quarter-million dollar real estate deal, and could not receive an urgent email message from my doctor. It was not only frustrating but totally unnecessary since they should have left my dialup service on until the ADSL was connected.

I have a Macbook laptop with an intel chip so it could not connect with your old modem, but by connecting with ethernet it took just 30 seconds to get connected. They had also changed the username and password of my ADSL access from the setup I had used last May. No explanation was given for the change.

We lost telephone service one day that week. It simply came back on after several hours without explanation.

I then lost access to my webmail again and last Thursday, Nov. 2, we lost regular telephone service. I reported that by using a neighbor's phone and also reported that I could not access my webmail. Friday, November 3, I went in and talked to your customer service people and they said the phone service fault would be reported and they printed out a copy of the internet data that had a new username and password.

The username I had in May was "eklund.svg" on Nov.3 they told me it was "eklund"
The password I had in May was "c.....eur" on Nov. 3 they told me it was "c.....6vr".

I was given no explanation of why it was changed.

When I returned home I tried to get access to the webmail. Neither the old username and password, nor the one that was just given to me workd, so I still have no access to my webmail as of Nov. 7.

Our regular phones service continued to be out from Thursday Nov. 3 to Tuesday, November 7. About 10AM on Nov. 6, the ADSL, which had been in service since it was turned on simply went off. It had been on earlier that morning.

I went to our neighbors and this time reported the situation to someone who claimed to be "management". She said that technicians would be working on the situation that day, Nov. 6, but you can understand that I had little trust in that promise. There is no indication that anyone did anything to restore either telephone or ADSL service on Nov. 6, or since.

We have been back in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines for more than a month, we made special efforts to continue our service during our absence and get it restored when we returned, and we still don't have telephone service or internet access.

I can understand mechanical failure. But my telephone connection is the only one coming to this building that failed, the ADSL service continued even after the phone stopped, and then it stopped with no reason, so I an entitled to believe that someone in your office is deliberately harassing me. These are less likely to be random faults than deliberate entries in your computer. Considering that you already owe me 700ECD for over-billing, don't you think you should be able to provide some service?

Because there was no evidence that anyone had made any attempt to restore any service, I tried to figure out how to access the web page that the technician had used to install the ADSL. When I found it using the history section of my browser I found that the ADSL had simply been turned off, so I turned it back on again. After I discovered the procedure that the technician would have used it only took a few seconds to restore service. A technician could have done that from your office or your service people could have simply instructed me how to do it, without requiring me to discover the procedure for myself.

I am going to put this open letter on my blog at http://svgb.karleklund.net to be available to all customers and government officials on Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to warn them of the quality of service that Cable & Wireless provides.

Karl Eklund