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Lima Bean

TalkTalk Bill Nightmare and Data Breach

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Can anybody please help ?

 

My friend left TalkTalk in good faith because they could not connect her service at her new address.  She cancelled with them, £21 in credit. 

 

Three years later she receievd a demand out of the blue for £336.

 

The service never went live.

 

All bills were sent to her old address. 

TalkTalk allowed this bill to accumulate, unbeknown to my friend, and then sold it to a debt collection agency. 

Only, this time, they supplied the debt collector with the new address.

 

My friend's personal data has now been shared or sold to three different companies. 

Her personal data and details were sent to a derelict property. 

She fears her identity may have been stolen and her excellent credit rating will also be affected. 

She is now being harassed by debt collectors for a service she never received. 

TalkTalk has deadlocked the matter and refuses to discuss it any further.

 

My friend served TalkTalk with a Subject Access Request which proves they sent all the bills to the wrong address. 

Ofcom is now investigating to ascertain if TalkTalk acted fairly, accurately and professionally.

 

Anybody have similar experiences ? 

My friend is quite upset and distressed by the flagrant disregard for her data security and the demand for a debt she firmly believes she does not owe and should not exist.

 

The disturbing thing, aside of the lost data and GDPR breach, is that TalkTalk initially acknowledged cancellation of my friend's Direct Debit, with no quibble. 

They sent this acknowledgement to her new address. 

 

They then created a bill and allowed it to accumulate. 

But sent it to her old address without her knowledge. 

 

She has asked TalkTalk why it did this and they have refused to comment. 

My friend believes this might be a [problem] TalkTalk operates when customers leave. 

Instead of paying money it owes, it creates a fictitious bill, wiping out the debt it owes and then either receives payment from the customer or makes a profit by selling the debt to an agency.

 

Surely this is illegal. 

 

When is the government going to set up a proper regulatory body with the power to hit these unscrupulous companies where it hurts ?

 

I'd advise any unhappy TalkTalk customers to serve them with an SAR. 

They HAVE to respond to it.  By law. 

It costs them money to do it if you request they send the details by mail. 

 

They can be fined if they refuse. 

It is your right and you can discover exactly who TalkTalk has shared your data with. 

Turn the tables on these companies who think they are above the law.

Learn how to serve an SAR here:

 

In the meantime, any solid advice on how my friend can proceed would be appreciated.

 

Thanks

 

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100'000's of like situations here

no one has actually done anything wrong here at all

its just your perception of how DCA's and debt buying works that is flawed sadly.

 

a dca has a consumer credit licence so is quite entitled to view a credit file to find the correct address to send silly threat[-o-grams too

 

I will guess this is lowells ?

 

has she had a letter of claim yet?

 

dx

 

 

 


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She has received a letter demanding payment.  Is this a letter of claim ?

 

She will not enter into any discussion with a third party to whom she has no business or obligation.

 

Apologies if my perception of DCA procedure is flawed.  She has never been pursued for debts in the past so it's new territory.  I think my friend takes exception to receiving demands for a service she never received, 3 years later, after initially being £21 in credit, from a company she has no business with.

 

As I understand it, TalkTalk even stored and shared her friend's telephone number without consent.

 

Is it also standard DCA practice to sell a debt on ?  It seems her information has now changed hands 3 times.

 

Under the revised GDPR laws she is now debating serving these DCA's with a Subject Access request.

 

TalkTalk is refusing to send her copies of their communications with the DCA's.  As I understand it, that is illegal and the ICO and Ofcom are now looking into that.

 

dx100uk

 

Please read my first post again.  I think you misunderstood it. 

 

The DCA didn't need to view any credit file to ascertain the correct address.  They already had it.  TalkTalk gave them the correct address.  It's in the SAR results.

 

The problem is that TalkTalk sent all the initial bills to the old address, then gave the new address to the DCA.  In other words, TalkTalk has acted unfairly.

 

However, now that the matter has been raised, does anybody know the current law and guidelines regarding third parties selling on personal data without consent ?

 

As I understand it, many DCA's are still not up to speed with the new GDPR laws of 2018. 

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they don't need anyone's permission to sell her data on. its in the org contract T&C, quite std practice.

the fact the lowells 

 

I wouldn't sweat too much about this

there are loads of Lowell talk talk debts here just search.

lowells have her correct address

until/unless Lowell solicitors issue a PAPLOC [pre action protocol letter of claim]

with a reply pack [that you do NOT USE, use ours]

 

id not kick pram wheels.

 

a DCA is NOT A BAILIFF

and have

ZERO legal powers on ANY debt.

 

dx

 


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Thanks dx100uk

 

Would you happen to know what the law is regarding the debt itself ? 

It's for a service which was never connected.

Never went live.

 

TalkTalk confirmed the Direct Debit had been cancelled, with no argument and with the account £21 in credit.

They then created a cancellation debt and sent the bills for this to a derelict property.

My friend had no knowledge of these bills or rising debt until she served TalkTalk with an SAR recently.

 

How can she be expected to pay for a service which never went live ?

She claims she cancelled the service within the 30 Day Right to Refuse period due to TalkTalk not connecting her service or sending an engineer.

TalkTalk's current T & C's clearly states that an account begins the moment the service goes live. 

The service never did go live.

 

Somebody at TalkTalk 'Deadlocked' the case whilst still negotiating and serving the SAR. 

So now they say they can't comment about lost data or anything else.

 

My friend's personal data was sent to a derelict property and has never been recovered.

TalkTalk refuses to disclose what it said in the letters to the DCA's.

 

Aside of possible identity theft, my friend does not want her excellent credit rating to be affected.

 

 

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is it on her credit file then?


10'000's of threat-o-grams are sent out to old addresses everyday

theres little data on them , certainly not of use to ID theft mungers

its how DCA's get backdoor CCJ's .

 

typically its the DCA's that inflate these debts by claiming monthly sums until end of contract say £30x18mts is a nice tidy sum

you'd be amazed at the number of mugs that think DCA's have magical powers and blindly pay them.

hence why they chance their luck for the price of a franked letter.

 

https://cse.google.com/cse?cx=partner-pub-8889411648654839:3134625398&q=lowell talk talk&oq=lowell talk talk&gs_l=partner-generic.3...104182.109406.0.110289.16.16.0.0.0.0.125.1194.14j2.16.0.gsnos%2Cn%3D13...0.5284j2687930j16...1.34.partner-generic..16.0.0.nl7MisBPmO8

 

 


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As I mentioned in my original post, TalkTalk are the company at fault.  It is TalkTalk which sent letters and bills to a derelict property.  A property which at the time was apparently frequented by construction workers by day and drug users and vandals at night.

 

They then created a debt and sold it to a company.  Apparently the debt collector needs to prove that the debt is legal.

 

As for the DCA's, she isn't even entering into discussion with them.  She's not afraid of them.  She just believes it is outrageous that her personal details are being shared and sold between companies.

 

There was nothing in TalkTalk's T & C's about sharing data with third parties. Nothing. They may have updated it since, but the original T & C's don't mention it.

 

The point remains. 

TalkTalk turned a £21 credit into a £336 debt.  For a service which never went live.

 

Is there anybody on this forum who knows the law regarding this ?

 

As I've said before, if there are any unhappy TalkTalk customers out there, serve them with an SAR. 

They certainly don't like it and it costs them money. 

Swamp them as they try to swamp you. 

Treat them as they treat you. 

The government needs to slap these companies down and demand transparency.

 

I reiterate, having read the posts on here and seen the liberties taken with my friend, DO NOT go with TalkTalk. 

They have no regard for your consumer rights.

 

Sorry dx100uk. 

But the sheer volume of complaints against TalkTalk is overwhelming. 

As for kicking any pram wheels, if it was me, I'd kick the wheels clean off.

 

TalkTalk even stored and contacted her friend's telephone number. 

That's a GDPR breach right there.

 

There's a principle involved.

 

 

 

 

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sorry but you simply do not understand how the debt selling and DCA industry work.

 

its the same MO for every debt to any original creditor sold to any DCA/debt buyer.

 

What you think is right or wrong under GDPR regarding the actions of any parties during this process is flawed.


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That's right, I don't understand. 

Which is why I am on here appealing for advice and information.

 

What I do know is that there is NO debt. 

The service did not go live.

 

The only thing which is flawed is TalkTalk's existence as a provider and it's unexplained motives for creating a debt, sending it to a derelict property and then selling it on to a debt collector.

 

Sounds like a big con to me.

 

As for your advice dx100uk, whilst your efforts are appreciated, your interpretation of my original post is indeed flawed.  Please read it again and then if you can help advise with me anything useful, I'm all ears.

 

My friend and I have heard back from Ofcom, the ICO and several consumer experts in the last 48 hours and none of them believe any of our claims, enquiries or requests are flawed.  On the contrary there seems to be a case to answer to.  

 

Can anybody else help with advice about the 30 Day Right To Refuse period with TalkTalk ?

 

I'll try to load a screenshot of their ridiculous, illiterate Terms and Conditions later.  It's a small pamphlet they issued some years ago with a page of information with no punctuation.  It's one big section of letters.  Words which run into each other and make little or no sense.  Written by a maniac it seems.

Edited by Lima Bean

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wheres this 30 days right to refuse come from?

 

 


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From the T & C's that TalkTalk issued.  The Right To Refuse the service if it or the equipment is not up to standard.  My friend's service was not even connected.  I repeat, It Did Not Go Live.  According to TalkTalk's own current T & C's, a service only comes into effect when it goes live.

 

In that case there is no bill to pay.  My friend cancelled, in writing, within the 30 Days before she was even connected.  The 30 Days shouldn't even really matter here as they only count once the service has gone live.

 

TalkTalk has acted unlawfully.

 

As for GDPR breaches, the storage of my friend's friend's telephone number is a data breach, as TalkTalk did not have consent to store and contact a person's number with whom they had no agreement or contract.

 

There was also nothing in the T & C's about debt collection agencies.  My friend never consented to her data being sold or shared with anybody outside of TalkTalk.

 

The debt collection agency matter is a side issue which will be dealt with later.  The initial concern is cancelling the debt and being reimbursed for the £21 TalkTalk still owes.

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makes me wonder why you came here if you'd already had numerous returns from Ofcom, the ICO and several consumer experts...

 

 


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The debt collection agency matter is a side issue which will be dealt with later.  The initial concern is cancelling the debt and being reimbursed for the £21 TalkTalk still owes.

 

 

But Lowell now own the debt ? 


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11 hours ago, Andyorch said:

 

 

But Lowell now own the debt ? 

 

I'm not sure who owns it.  Apparently the debt has now changed hands 3 times.  It's almost as 

though even the debt collectors realise they're on dodgy ground and cannot prove the debt and so 

are selling it on.

 

TalkTalk has been rude and useless throughout the entire dispute.  Passed from one employee to 

another.  None of whom appear to understand English or the basic principles involved.  Hit them with 

an SAR and ask a direct question and they 'Deadlock' the case.

 

Hope if Corbyn does get in the laws will change and these companies are hit with fines and investigations.  

He's already promising to go after Sports Direct and several other suspect organisations.

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17 hours ago, dx100uk said:

makes me wonder why you came here if you'd already had numerous returns from Ofcom, the ICO and several consumer experts...

 

 

 

Truth is, whilst everybody acknowledges the case looks suspect, we first need to establish a little proof.  

TalkTalk are holding back copies of letters and communications and sent an incomplete SAR.  The ICO are 

now on that.  Ofcom are asking if TalkTalk has acted Fairly, Accurately and Professionally, so I guess they're 

in trouble there too, because they haven't.  Plus a few other people seem to be saying what we have said all 

along - that the debt sounds both unlawful and unreasonable.

 

I wonder how many times TalkTalk does this to people.  I'm finding more and more similar cases every day.  

A lot of people seem to advise the customer to have the debt overturned and then forget about what they're 

owed.  That's insane.  The real issue here is having a regulatory body smack TalkTalk into shape and order them 

to play fair and pay up what they owe.

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trouble is 

its not only talk talk

every other provider does it

as does every other consumer credit company

and its gone on since the 70's.

 

debt buying is by far the biggest banking industry there is.

it'll never change.

 

 


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that the debt sounds both unlawful and unreasonable.

 

 

Well that goes without question...along with the other 1000s of claims here of the same....but if the debt has been assigned to Lowells...then Talk talk have washed their hands of it and Lowell are now the legal owners.

 

So you do nothing now and wait for them to issue a court claim...then you can defend it at their cost...its far easier less risky to defend than to instigate.


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Thanks.  That sounds like good advice.  It's just very inconvenient to the person being hounded.  If TalkTalk played fair from the start we wouldn't even be having this conversation and my friend wouldn't be angry about a debt she doesn't owe and having to deal with letters and demands from companies she has no business with.

 

I do believe the laws and regulations will change for the better, eventually.

 

Andyorch - she will not enter into a dialogue with the debt collectors.  Will a court claim come via the courts and require a postal signature ?  What I mean is, will it be official ? 

 

It's an unwanted concern and worry to somebody with an excellent credit rating who is new to this.  Especially when the debt has been created and demanded unfairly.  It makes no sense for them to issue debt demands without your knowledge for 3 years and then 'Deadlock' the matter when you find out.  

 

Fortunately, she now has a lot of SAR evidence to argue.  Point is, she shouldn't have had to.  Therefore, I hope she is compensated for her time and any distress caused.  Not to mention having her good character and credit rating brought into disrepute by even suggesting she is a bad debtor.

 

I must ask again, to anybody on here, about consumer law and the right to refuse goods or services which are not up to standard.  My friend cancelled her service because that service was never connected and never went live.  She did it in writing and within the 30 days.  TalkTalk confirmed the cancellation and then went away and created a debt without her knowledge.

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Andyorch - she will not enter into a dialogue with the debt collectors.  Will a court claim come via the courts and require a postal signature ?  What I mean is, will it be official ? 

 

Cant get anymore official than a court claim from Northampton CCBC with their seal on it....normal post....claim can be dealt with on line.

 

I think it would pay you to read a few threads here on court claims re this type of debt/disputes and the process involved...some of the points you raise are very naive.

Welcome to murky world of debt assignment/ credit registers and data protection.

 

Andy


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That's useful.

 

If the points raised are naïve, it's because it's new territory and why I came on here.  For advice.  At least your replies are clear and concise and you appear to have read the initial post.

 

Thanks

 

Again, at the risk of sounding naïve :) - does anybody know anything about consumer law and 30 Day Right to Refuse policies ?

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there isn't only as such.

 

there is a general one which is part of all contract law under the consumer credit act, but this is not credit

 

there is also a 14 day right to cancel for no reason under CCA (Consumer Contracts Act) , but again thats only online applications.

there is also the 30 days rule if something is faulty under CRA .

 

what is written in their own T&C's is not law but sometimes useful.

 

dx

 


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That's interesting and helpful. 

Thanks. 

I'll run all this by my friend and post an update soon as I can.

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