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curlypaul
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SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible to make!

Dear Virgin Media,

 

There has been fraudulent activity on my account. I have not received the mobile SIM for my account and I have not received any of the bills for my account. I have checked my last bank statement and there have been 2 charges from Virgin:


01/12/2014 'VIRGIN MOBILE -92.96
05/01/2015 'VIRGIN MOBILE -63.55

 

I moved into my new property on the 9th December 2014. A Virgin Media installation engineer installed Virgin media on the 10th December 2014. He stated that the mobile SIM had not been posted and should arrive in the next month. I still have not received the SIM card. I should be on the Big Bang Service £25/ month (for 12 months, then £32 / month) + Virgin Phone line £16.99/ month (Total £41.99). My virgin SIM card (which I have still not received) was £8/ month.

I spoke with 3 of your customer services advisers:

15/01/2015 18:20 (Name unknown - female) - disconnected

15/01/2015 18:42 (Name unknown - male) - disconnected

15/01/2015 18:50 (Arah) – told me to write a letter.

 

The first adviser advised me to cancel my D/D until this matter has been resolved. The 3rd adviser has suspended my account until these fraudulent transactions on my account have been verified. Once my account has been reimbursed I will link the D/D up again.

 

I have sent an email to "The Team" and will post a letter (tomorrow) to your Swansea office .

Sincerely,

Paul Clarke

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Message 4 of 16
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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

With the best will in the world it is difficult to see how Mat is in a position to help further with this one.

It is very apparent that no kind of investigation has taken place - the 'fraud team' work for Virgin whose one and only purpose is to get as much money as possible out of customers bank accounts (there was a time when the whole concept of the DD system would have been considered ridiculous). They have no investigatory powers or any kind of special authority to carry out investigations.

I suggest that since you have cancelled your DD debt collectors letters will start and your credit rating may be affected.

An immediate 'deadlock letter' (google it - also the Citizens Advice Bureau website) will prevent this while the matter is in dispute and makes any such harassment illegal.

To take this matter to the County Court is a very easy and cheap process but as you have mentioned a solicitor this would be ideal - from the basics you have given costs would eventually be met by Virgin (I can't imagine them finding a solicitor who would be prepared to have the embarassment of disputing your claim).

A solicitor may or may not consider it appropriate to report the criminal aspect to the police (he may feel duty bound).

He could do this on your behalf - if you try to do it you will be fobbed off that it is a 'civil matter' or it is for VM to complain.

It is apparent from your post that you already appreciate the need to keep a log of all contact with VM with conversations recorded verbatim as much as is possible (including a hard copy of this forum thread).

You are of course entitled to know the numbers called from the SIM seeing as VM are saying that you are responsible for them - is there an account set up that you can go to.

All a bit 'heavy' perhaps and what you really need is the attention of someone at VM who is in a position of sufficient authority, with a bit of common sense and a will to help to get this sorted.

Unfortunately it will probably just be left to computers to 'process you' as a debtor.

Very importantly do not try to 'bluff' VM regarding litigation - they will recognise it as such immediately.

 

Good luck with it

 

 

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

You seem well on top of the matter which VM should recognise and sort the matter out with an additional massive goodwill gesture. However don't be surprised if your call re DD cancellation 'cannot be traced' or the system malfunctioned at that particular time.

Good to see you have legal advice (although a 'conveyancing' solicitor may feel it appropriate to refer you to a consumer protection lawyer - Proctor & Gamble lawyers sound ideal).

Virgin Mobile is a seperate entity from Virgin Media with access through 'My Virgin Mobile' - would be interesting to try to log in although you might have trouble with a password you have never set . If you phone 789 they will be able to confirm that an account has been set up (this is where the fraud/theft of SIM starts unless its just an unholy mess in the VMobile billing system - Ive been wrongly charged for texting photos to USA and ghost calls to a premium 09 number.

You seem to lead a busy life (particularly with recent house move) and its probably best to 'dump it' all on a lawyer and sit back and relax while they deal with an 'easy one' with no cost to yourself at the end of the day. You have an abundance of evidence and any further future action by yourself is probably best left to the advice of a lawyer.

The immediate problem is use of your mobile - perhaps a cheap or free PAYG sim which is not ideal but better than nothing although you have probably already got this in hand/sorted.

Good luck with it.

 

Mat - just want to clarify that I do not want to seem disparaging regarding your efforts - I'm sure OP will be grateful for anything you can do

 

 

 

 

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Mat,

Thanks for your message. I sent you a PM (‎24-01-2015) with my mobile phone number.

 

Spell,

Thanks for the mail. I have kept a record of this thread.

 

I have all the documents printed.I couldn't get to the post office today, but will send the x4 letters tomorrow (all recorded delivery).

 

Yes, unfortunately I'm really busy and could do without this grief! I'm trying to fit this around my job.I travel round the world a lot, so the P&G legal team have been a great help.

 

I'm awaiting advice from the 'conveyancing' solicitor. They may have a department in the law firm who is able to take all this on. I'm also sending the file to Citizens Advice Bureau asking them for further advice and a specialist lawyer who is able to take this on.

 

I've spoken to my Bank (RBS) Fraud department. I'm sending them copies of the documentation. They have also advised me to send copies to my local branch should they need evidence to help "lift" any poor credit rating that VM give me. RBS customer services are also looking at the DD indemnity policy on the transactions with Virgin.

 

Whilst I have cancelled the DD, I am still paying by credit card the other Virgin Services (TV, home phone, internet) which I use.

 

I've been a Vodafone customer for years. I was waiting for the virgin SIM to arrive before I switched my number over.

 

Unfortunately whilst Virgin is within their right (by informing the caller first) to record the phone calls, the consumer is not allowed to record calls (unless they advise the recipient prior to recording). I've kept written logs of the discussions. Some of the call centres (Far East etc) have “non-western” names, which make it very difficult understand.

 

Regarding compensation, I want virgin to admit they made a mistake and to put all this behind me. My charge out rate for P&G isn't cheap. I have been recording my hours/ cost working this, and I can tell you, it's a lot more than the £172.51 in call charges that VM have charged me!

 

I'll keep you posted.

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Message 2 of 16
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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Hi Paul,

 

Thanks for your post,

 

I'm really sorry about this. Please keep me updated with your progress.

 

Let me know if you need anything at all.

 

Thanks,

 

Mat


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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Mat,

 

I received a call today from Jay (Virgin Email Correspondence Team), who stated that the Virgin Fraud team had investigated and have decided that the calls are not fraudulent and are mine! He said that the SIM card had been sent out in September and there were an additional x2 £8 charges to my bill.

 

As I mentioned in my letter (copy above), I did not exchange contracts until the 9th December. I did not collect keys until the 9th December. I have legal documentation to support this. I had a Virgin Installation engineer come round to install Virgin TV etc on the 10th December and he will confirm that the house was full of boxes and I had only just moved in. In addition, I was with a supplier from the company I work in California for most of the month of October. I have flight details/ US immigration documents, hotel reservations to support this.

 

After informing Jay the above, he still said that the calls and usage must have been mine and that Virgin's decision still stands. I asked him to discuss this with his complaints department - who he said will be contacting me in the next 28 days.

 

Unfortunately Virgin's decision has left me no choice. I will now discuss the case (with virgin and these disputed calls) with my solicitor. I will ask him to help me with the next course of action. We will also be informing Ofcom and will provide them supporting documentation of our case. These additional steps unfortunately will cost me money, which I will look to claim back (from Virgin) through legal proceedings.

 

I am astonished that a new customer has been treated this way! I would like to remind Virgin that their first customer services advisers, advised me (15/01/2015 18:20) to cancel my direct debit for virgin until this has been resolved. I have informed my bank (RBS) of the fraudulent activity on my account with Virgin.

 

If this matter is resolved and these charges from Virgin are dropped, I will of course be happy to set up the D/D again.

 

Mat, you said to let you know if there is anything you can do. Well, if you can discuss this case with the Virgin Fraud team. Check the number of the virgin mobile. Check the numbers that they have been calling. I'm finding this unbelievable and if there was any way to resolve it quickly I would appreciate it.

 

Regards,

 

Paul

 

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

With the best will in the world it is difficult to see how Mat is in a position to help further with this one.

It is very apparent that no kind of investigation has taken place - the 'fraud team' work for Virgin whose one and only purpose is to get as much money as possible out of customers bank accounts (there was a time when the whole concept of the DD system would have been considered ridiculous). They have no investigatory powers or any kind of special authority to carry out investigations.

I suggest that since you have cancelled your DD debt collectors letters will start and your credit rating may be affected.

An immediate 'deadlock letter' (google it - also the Citizens Advice Bureau website) will prevent this while the matter is in dispute and makes any such harassment illegal.

To take this matter to the County Court is a very easy and cheap process but as you have mentioned a solicitor this would be ideal - from the basics you have given costs would eventually be met by Virgin (I can't imagine them finding a solicitor who would be prepared to have the embarassment of disputing your claim).

A solicitor may or may not consider it appropriate to report the criminal aspect to the police (he may feel duty bound).

He could do this on your behalf - if you try to do it you will be fobbed off that it is a 'civil matter' or it is for VM to complain.

It is apparent from your post that you already appreciate the need to keep a log of all contact with VM with conversations recorded verbatim as much as is possible (including a hard copy of this forum thread).

You are of course entitled to know the numbers called from the SIM seeing as VM are saying that you are responsible for them - is there an account set up that you can go to.

All a bit 'heavy' perhaps and what you really need is the attention of someone at VM who is in a position of sufficient authority, with a bit of common sense and a will to help to get this sorted.

Unfortunately it will probably just be left to computers to 'process you' as a debtor.

Very importantly do not try to 'bluff' VM regarding litigation - they will recognise it as such immediately.

 

Good luck with it

 

 

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Hi Paul,

 

I want to get this looked into further if possible.

 

Are you able to PM me your mobile number so I can get this checked out?

 

Thanks,


Mat


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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

 

Hi Spell,

Thank you for your response.

 

I really didn't want it to get this far. I assumed common sense would prevail. I had been a BT customer for over 10 years with no problems! To become a VM customer and immediately be treated in this way is astonishing.

 

I was advised to cancel my direct debit by one of the Virgin Advisors. I've only just moved into a new house and can't afford my credit rating to be affected!

 

I have googled the Deadlock letter. I've typed it up and will post it recorded delivery on Monday.

 

I will be using the same solicitor that helped me complete my house purchase, however, I mentioned this case to my company (Proctor& Gamble) solicitors and they were very keen to offer advice.

 

I have found the hotel reservations, flight details, immigration documents proving I was out of the country. I will be printing them off along with a copy of my Mortgage completion document and send these to all the relevant parties on Monday.

 

Searching through my emails, I managed to find an account number - However it only shows my TV, Internet and home telephone charges. I have no way of finding the Mobile charges.

 

I've found out Virgin is a member of Communications and Internet Services Adjudication Scheme (CISAS), and will send a letter to CISAS on Monday.

 

My first letter was posted to VM (signed delivery), however VM only called me and were not keen to write a letter. We shall see if one turns up. In addition, I did ask the call advisor (Jay) to post me the bills, as I had not been receiving these.

 

I really appreciated your advice, thank you again.

 

Regards,

 

Paul

 

Summary:

Sending additional letter (with all documentation) along with Deadlock to VM

Sending all documentation to my solicitor.

Sending all documentation to CISAS

Sending all documentation to Citizens Advice Bureau

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Message 7 of 16
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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

You seem well on top of the matter which VM should recognise and sort the matter out with an additional massive goodwill gesture. However don't be surprised if your call re DD cancellation 'cannot be traced' or the system malfunctioned at that particular time.

Good to see you have legal advice (although a 'conveyancing' solicitor may feel it appropriate to refer you to a consumer protection lawyer - Proctor & Gamble lawyers sound ideal).

Virgin Mobile is a seperate entity from Virgin Media with access through 'My Virgin Mobile' - would be interesting to try to log in although you might have trouble with a password you have never set . If you phone 789 they will be able to confirm that an account has been set up (this is where the fraud/theft of SIM starts unless its just an unholy mess in the VMobile billing system - Ive been wrongly charged for texting photos to USA and ghost calls to a premium 09 number.

You seem to lead a busy life (particularly with recent house move) and its probably best to 'dump it' all on a lawyer and sit back and relax while they deal with an 'easy one' with no cost to yourself at the end of the day. You have an abundance of evidence and any further future action by yourself is probably best left to the advice of a lawyer.

The immediate problem is use of your mobile - perhaps a cheap or free PAYG sim which is not ideal but better than nothing although you have probably already got this in hand/sorted.

Good luck with it.

 

Mat - just want to clarify that I do not want to seem disparaging regarding your efforts - I'm sure OP will be grateful for anything you can do

 

 

 

 

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Mat,

Thanks for your message. I sent you a PM (‎24-01-2015) with my mobile phone number.

 

Spell,

Thanks for the mail. I have kept a record of this thread.

 

I have all the documents printed.I couldn't get to the post office today, but will send the x4 letters tomorrow (all recorded delivery).

 

Yes, unfortunately I'm really busy and could do without this grief! I'm trying to fit this around my job.I travel round the world a lot, so the P&G legal team have been a great help.

 

I'm awaiting advice from the 'conveyancing' solicitor. They may have a department in the law firm who is able to take all this on. I'm also sending the file to Citizens Advice Bureau asking them for further advice and a specialist lawyer who is able to take this on.

 

I've spoken to my Bank (RBS) Fraud department. I'm sending them copies of the documentation. They have also advised me to send copies to my local branch should they need evidence to help "lift" any poor credit rating that VM give me. RBS customer services are also looking at the DD indemnity policy on the transactions with Virgin.

 

Whilst I have cancelled the DD, I am still paying by credit card the other Virgin Services (TV, home phone, internet) which I use.

 

I've been a Vodafone customer for years. I was waiting for the virgin SIM to arrive before I switched my number over.

 

Unfortunately whilst Virgin is within their right (by informing the caller first) to record the phone calls, the consumer is not allowed to record calls (unless they advise the recipient prior to recording). I've kept written logs of the discussions. Some of the call centres (Far East etc) have “non-western” names, which make it very difficult understand.

 

Regarding compensation, I want virgin to admit they made a mistake and to put all this behind me. My charge out rate for P&G isn't cheap. I have been recording my hours/ cost working this, and I can tell you, it's a lot more than the £172.51 in call charges that VM have charged me!

 

I'll keep you posted.

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...

Mat,

 

I'm confused about your previous message. You asked me to PM my number. I sent it to you on Saturday (24/01/2015) shortly after you posted your message.

 

I hadn't heard from you, so I PM it again earlier today. I'm available to talk until 22:30 today if you have time to call.

 

Regards,

 

Paul

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Re: SIM Card Not received in Big Bang (including mobile) package - charged for calls impossible t...


curlypaul wrote:

 

Unfortunately whilst Virgin is within their right (by informing the caller first) to record the phone calls, the consumer is not allowed to record calls (unless they advise the recipient prior to recording). I've kept written logs of the discussions.

 

I think you are referring to RIPA legislation introduced in 2000 to address human rights matters in investigations by security services, police, customs etc involving authorities to be obtained for phone bugging, surveillance, obs, listening devices etc.

My latest understanding (Google it if you really do want a headache) but my latest understanding is that you are perfectly entitled to record your own phone call because there is no intrusion of privacy between two other parties.

It is suggested (only) that it may be considered courteous to inform the other party but a recording is good evidence because it can prove or disprove something in dispute at a later stage (theres a bit of common sense for you).

Anyway I suggest that this is academic in your case, you already have good evidence although this can be firmed up by a solicitor and in any event a Judge would make the final direction on admissability of such evidence - perhaps he would direct VM to produce their recordings.

By now you should be getting profuse apologies and claims of 'confusion' on their part but be aware that even 'reputable' companies lose solicitors letters and court papers (in their own building if there is proof of delivery) - I'm sure they wouldn't just bin them.

Payment of claim is often made only when the bubble of arrogance is burst by bailiffs pricing up and removing computers etc in the head office reception area (I have known this at a Police HQ).

The main thing now is that you are the complainant and in the driving seat with the main 'problem' being dealing with the feelings of anger and frustration - be good if you could just enjoy it as a project which you could obviously have done without.

If I can help anymore then don't hesitate but I think you have all points covered and at the end of the day it is your decisions that matter re how proceed and I am conscious that I don't want to present undo influence.

It is a thought that this behaviour could just as easily have been invoked against a customer who may be vulnerable for a variety of reasons - not nice, and it is very satisfying to get a just result.

One final thought - never accept the first/second offer.

 

Best of luck with it

 

PS - Just a thought - Surely Mat is not expecting you to provide the mobile phone number for the SIM you've never had - your contact details should be readily available on your main account.

 

 

 

 

 

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