Tag Archives | Irish Payment Services Organisation (IPSO)

02 and online vs paper billing – the controversy continues

It seems that the decision of O2 to force all their customers towards online billing is causing a lot of concern for their customers. I wrote about this on Monday already, and here’s another readers e-mail.

You might be aware that O2 are switching to online billing and will no longer send customers a bill by post, unless they ‘opt out’ of the service.

I have no problem with online services personally (I am in my twenties and active online, and have access to high speed broadband) but I am thinking of older people here – my parents are O2 bill pay and do not have access to the Internet at home, how exactly are they supposed to keep an eye on what they are spending now?

They were not even aware this was happening until I told them! I understand this is a cost saving measure for O2 but people should have the option to ‘opt in’ for the service rather than having to ‘opt out’ of it! Wonder am I the only one concerned about this?

I wonder does anyone out there know what, if any, obligations are on O2 to deliver bills to their customers?

If customers are paying by direct debit, O2 is obliged to inform their customer at least 14 days prior to money being debited from the customers account.

If the customer has no way of retrieving an online bill, and didn’t know that they had to opt in to receive a paper bill, then I wonder who’d be seen as to blame?

Given that IPSO lies to consumers anyway, there’d be no surprise when they take the side of O2 rather than the consumer anyway should any queries or issues arise if direct debit rules are broken.

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What happens when your credit card is put “at risk”?

Another article in the recent Sunday Tribune details a persons problem with AIB after their credit was apparently skimmed, and they had €3500 taken from their account.

Lets get past the fact that someone can have so much money in their account that they don’t notice €3500 being taken over a period of a couple of months, and look at some of the issues here – some of which I’ve experienced myself.

We know for a start that this AIB customer is never going to be told where his credit card was skimmed. This is because AIB and the Irish Payments Service Organisation (IPSO) will lie to him and tell him that it’s against Data Protection regulations to reveal where the card was skimmed. There are no such regualtions, and this like is only intended to protect the business or bank that allowed the card to be skimmed.

I’m in the middle of such a “discussion” with my bank at the moment. They called me recently to tell me that because my card was “compromised” it was going to be cancelled and reissued. They wouldn’t tell me where or how it was compromised or what transactions triggered their “suspicions”. After 3 months of queries, emails and letters, I have still received no information.

My arguement is that I used my credit card “somewhere” that caused the credit card companys suspicions to be aroused enough for them to cancel my credit card.

Yet, when I try to find out where it was that I used my card so that I can avoid using it in the future, they won’t give me that information.

Like most banks when it comes to “responding” to customer complaints, they have taken over 3 months of rejecting my requests for information in the hope that I’ll forget about it and move on – and saving them having to actually answer any real questions.

Which is all fine and good – they’ve probably bored me into submission on this one as well. That, or else my next step will be to send in a data request to their Data “person” where I’m allowed request all the information that they hold about me on their files.

But I know that’s not possible in this case since my credit card company actually uses a foreign company to process my credit card transactions and it is on their computer records that any information about “suspicions” that caused my credit card to be cancelled are stored. And I have no legal backing to allow me get that information.

And the best bit – none of our consumer protection organisations have any jurisdiction in this matter. And that’s despite that anyone who now banks with Ulster Bank, National Irish Bank or Halifax and have credit cards with them could find themselves in similar regulatory “no mans lands”.

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