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Andyjenk2
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Ex customers not welcome back?

I recently left VM. I have 90 days to notify all contacts and change the address forgotten email reminders are sent to for dozens if not hundreds of Web sites. Plus I will no longer be able to refer back to old emails (not that VM cared when it lost several years worth). After all that bother do you think I will use VM again? I had my email account from the Ntlworld days. I do not remember being told by NTL that I would lose it if I changed Internet providers. Most contracts are for a year. It would make sense for VM to keep email addresses live IN CASE a customer wanted to return.

However, given VM's abysmal email security they have probably done me a big favour. The least VM could do is keep the email address live for incoming do emails could be redirected and ex customers could see if a password change request was still going to an NTLWORLD address. What would it cost VM to keep the email address live - even removing the posts? They cannot give that email to someone else as that would be a blatant breach of security so it has to be flagged in some way and not deleted or others could be assigned that address and receive emails destined for the original owner. The above is conjectured based on my understanding of CLOSED in reference to an email account. If I have got it wrong could someone explain? Thanks

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Superuser
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

Lets deal with one consideration first.

Plus I will no longer be able to refer back to old emails

Not true, you can export your emails using your mail client and or you can download your emails from your account using a backup tool such as the one I mention in this post here.

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Email/Backing-up-your-Emails-One-of-many-solutions/td-p/3539542

Note that the solution given will also enable you to make backups of mail stored in email programs on your PC.  Mailstore Personal is completely free and easy to use.

Virgin Media have made no secret that accounts are terminated after 90 days.  It's in their T&C's and I've seen numerous articles in the computer press that refer to it.  I myself have posted regularly that users SHOULD STOP relying on ANY ISP address for precisely this reason.  Oh and I have for the most part practised what what I preach on this score.  I only have a few accounts still sending notifications back to my blueyonder address.

For the record Virgin Media are not the only company that closes email accounts when you leave.  BT also does this, although in their case users can pay a monthly fee to keep the email address up and running.  BUT at the time of writing BT have just increased the price of the email only service.

Other ISP's have their own rules, but even where users have had free email from an ISP for years, it's continuation is not guaranteed.  Look at what happened recently with the orange email service.  EE pulled the plug on that completely earlier this year.

This site from Broadband choices explains more about what different companies do with regards to email when you leave.

https://www.broadbandchoices.co.uk/ask-our-expert/can-i-keep-my-old-email-address-ask-our-expert

As you can see no one allows you free access forever apart from Sky, and quite frankly I wouldn't be surprised if their policy changes down the line.

Remember it costs a company to run email servers.  If they are providing a service to customers for free, then they must have already offset that cost against something, such as the cost of your broadband subscription.  After all, "Their ain't no such thing as a free lunch."

So you can take umbrage at having your email deleted in this way, or you can consider it a learning experience.  Taking this forward you should not rely on your next ISP's email service for your main contact details.  Virgin will welcome you back should you wish to return, but as you've said they can't re-allocate your old email address, so presumably they do keep a log somewhere of what addresses have been allocated in the past.  But no new customer can get an ntlworld.com address these days.  They are only able to get virginmedia.com addresses, although the local parts of these cannot match the local part of a legacy address either.

Tim

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Andyjenk2
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

Thanks Tim.

So using Gmail, Outlook etc. Is a safer option?

I take your point about T&Cs but my email address was set up under NTL. I'm sure I would have remembered if when VM took over they had told me to look at THEIR T&Cs for my NTL email.

Thanks for the LINK. I will give it a try.

There is absolutely no excuse however for VM to have such restrictive and easily cracked passwords. I suppose the spurious "you've got cookies disabled", random failures to connect, suddenly deciding I might be a robot and going to the VM home page instead are very effective if extremely annoying ways VM has had to add to stop brute force hacking of crap passwords. 

 

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Superuser
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

Virgin Media didn't take over NTL, rather it was a rebranding of NTL/Telewest after they brought Virgin Mobile from Richard Branson.  At the same time they agreed a licensing deal which allows them to use the Virgin Brand.

But to the best of my knowledge the T&C's for free email have always been reliant on you having an account, whether you were with NTL, Telewest or joined after the rebranding.  For example the virgin.net dial up accounts, which were originally a joint venture between Virgin and NTL until NTL took it in house completely, were reliant on people connecting to the internet via the Virgin.net access number at least once every 180 days.

I personally do agree with the ridiculousness of the password policy, although a random 10 character password using the letters and numbers allowed is relatively safe,  I personally would prefer a longer one.  Having said that when some people use passwords like leicester123 and then and up wondering how their account gets hacked, I do despair.

A non ISP account is always preferable these days it doesn't just have to be outlook or gmail though.  There are other free options out there.

Tim

Tim

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Superuser
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

"I take your point about T&Cs but my email address was set up under NTL."

The T&C has always said they reserve the right to change the terms at any time.
Once you were out of contract you moved to a rolling 30 days contract so you were agreeing to the terms each month. And when you left you had no agreement with vm. You had no contract to pay them and they had no contract to provide services or support. so at the point, you left anything agreed went out the window.
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Andyjenk2
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

"You had no contract to pay them and they had no contract to provide services or support. so at the point, you left anything agreed went out the window."

So they cannot charge me for outstanding bills after I left? I don't think so! They already tried to charge me for services which will be incurred AFTER I left. If I had not pointed this out I would have been ripped off. Anyone leaving VM please check that you are not being overcharged. 

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Andyjenk2
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Re: Ex customers not welcome back?

Thanks Tim. Leicester123 at 12 characters is still a lot harder to crack than ANY 10 alphameric password!
So we pay through the nose for the word "Virgin" which implies a better quality of service than "NTL" but does not provide it. Great.
Andy
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