Telco's billing system glitch adds seconds to calls

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Telco's billing system glitch adds seconds to calls

Startel refunds customers $12,258.

Brisbane-based mobile telco Startel Communications has refunded customers a total of $12,258 after discovering a glitch that affected its billing system between July 2009 and February 2012.

Some 1294 customers were affected by the glitch, which added five to six seconds onto customers’ calls.

Startel discovered the glitch when it came under new management last February and duly notified the Australian Media and Communications Authority (ACMA).

ACMA found Startel in breach of Australia’s Telecommunications Consumer Protection (TCP) Code and Call Charging and Billing Accuracy (CCBA) Code.

It entered into a Deed of Agreement with Startel last week, requiring the telco to contact all affected customers within 30 days, and reimburse them within three weeks of notification.

A Startel employee said the company began processing refunds last month. Most customers were affected by the glitch, he said.

ACMA chairman Chris Chapman commended the telco for proactively advising the authority of its error.

“We are confident that Startel has rectified the billing inaccuracy and now has measures in place to ensure it complies with the TCP and CCBA codes,” he said.

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