Insights Ofcom fines two phone companies £35,000 for “slamming”

Ofcom has fined Guaranteed Telecom Ltd (which also trades as Zoom Telecom) and Met Technologies Ltd (which also trades as Millennium Talk and Met-Plus Telecom) a combined total of £35,000 after it found that they took over the home phone services of more than a hundred people in total without their permission. This practice, known as “slamming”, is a particularly aggressive form of mis-selling. It involves customers being switched from one company to another without their consent or knowledge.

Ofcom’s investigation found that Guaranteed Telecom and Met Technologies, which are separate legal entities, but under common management, slammed at least 110 customers throughout 2019 (43 and 67 respectively), a sizeable proportion of whom were elderly or vulnerable. In many cases, even when customers cancelled the order to take over their landline service, the companies made repeated attempts to transfer them.

Ofcom also discovered that Guaranteed Telecom and Met Technologies prevented at least 52 customers (27 and 25 respectively) from switching to another provider after they had slammed them.

Ofcom has therefore fined Guaranteed Telecom £10,000 and Met Technologies £25,000. The companies must also release affected customers from their contracts without charge, and refund those who had already switched and paid early termination fees.

The money raised from this fine, which must be paid to Ofcom within two months, will be passed on to HM Treasury. To read Ofcom’s Confirmation Decision, click here. For further information on “slamming”, click here.