186k, Elite Internet, Mailbox Internet Services Go Bust?

Posted In: 186k Internet 

Before I begin, if any readers are looking for the “1st post of 2009” article that I emailed you about yesterday, please click here to view.

Also, with regards the title of the post. I don’t know if 186k are in any sort of financial trouble, hence the question mark. I am only assuming as I can see no other reason as to why Tiscali would pull the plug on them.

Now on with the post 🙂

I seem to be dogged by broadband troubles. Around 4 or 5 years ago I signed up for broadband with a company called “E7even” broadband. At the time they were offering state of the art broadband, with no upload or download limits for only £14.99 per month. They were by far the cheapest provider at the time so as you’d expect, they managed to pull in a lot of customers.

Everything was fine for around 2 years, until 1 day all E7even broadband customers awoke to  what I think they described as a “garden walled” page – please feel free to comment if my terminology is a wrong! It simply said that E7even Broadband were no longer able to provide Internet services for their customers, to put it simply – the money had run out.

So customers were presented with a couple of options:

1. Sign up with a company called EzeeDSL LTD (part of the 186k group) and be instantly reconnected.

2. Wait for 30 days until the line could be disconnected and then you could move to another provider.

Being left without an Broadband connection for 30 days would have been a nightmare for most customers, so as you can imagine, a huge percentage of E7even broadband customers went for option number 1 and signed up with EzeeDSL.

The price for the package was £5 more than the E7even package and came in at £19.99 per month for a connection with unlimited downloads and uploads. The only downside at the time was a forced 12 month contract, but with no other real options many people, myself included had no choice but to sign up.

During the next couple of years, the connection was fine. Support didn’t exist and many people had trouble getting MAC codes, but I never really needed any support so it didn’t matter.

During the time I was with EzeeDSL, or 186k Limited. They also “rescued” – there words not mine! A number of customers from other broadband service providers in the same way they did with E7even customers. 186k were starting to get a reputation for buying out smaller companies with financial problems, they were providing the broadband service for all of the following:

  • EzeeDSL
  • Elite Internet
  • Mailbox Internet

So….jump forward to January 16th 2009. Some (including me) 186k/EzeeDSL/Elite Internet/Mailbox Internet customers were awoken to the following notice from 186k’s main provider – Tiscali. All former E7even customers should notice the screen 😉

You will no longer be able to access the Internet from this connection. It is essential that we move your existing Internet broadband connection to a new Internet Service Provider.

Tiscali Business Services is the underlying provider for this broadband line. Your Internet Service Provider (being 186k Limited, Elite Internet Services Limited or Mailbox Internet Services Limited), has been delivering your service pursuant to arrangements with Tiscali Business Services. Unfortunately these arrangements can no longer be maintained and Tiscali Business Services needs to move your service to a new Internet Service Provider, to ensure continuity of your Internet connection.

Whilst we appreciate that this is very disruptive it is essential that we resolve this as soon as possible. To minimise the disruption to you we will re-connect you with a temporary user name and password whilst you arrange a permanent move to an alternative Internet Service Provider. Tiscali Business Services has made the necessary arrangements to assist you in transferring your service to an alternative Internet Service Provider as quickly as possible. The temporary user name and password will remain valid for a maximum of 30 days from the date of issue.

We do understand the inconvenience that this will cause. If you are happy with your underlying network provider we have been able to set up a straight-forward process with three internet service providers who use Tiscali Business Services’ network. Each of these Internet Service Providers offers a full range of services including up to 16Mb packages (where available), a minimum 3 month contract and a variety of complementary services.

If you are a business with a single line where your email and hosting are not provided as part of your existing package of this line we recommend:

PIPEX BUSINESS – High performance Business broadband products from £14.50 per month exc. VAT, with the first 3 months free, if you commit to a 12 month contract. Please contact 0800 954 2857*.

If you are a business with multiple lines and where your email or hosting is provided as part of your existing package of this line we recommend:

NILDRAM – High performance Business Class broadband products from £14.50 exc. VAT, with the first 3 months free, if you commit to a 12 month contract. Please call 0800 072 0417*.

If you are not a business user and or do not need business style products we recommend:

freedom2surf – High performance broadband products from £13.70 inc. VAT, with the first 3 months free, if you commit to a 12 month contract. Please call 0800 072 0400*.

You are, of course, free to choose any alternative Internet Service Provider that you desire. If you do not want to use any of the three Internet Service Providers above, and instead would like to migrate to another Internet Service Provider, then please call 0871 265 7261** (calls charged at National Rates), or send an email with the following details:

Phone number that your broadband service is on
Your address
Your postcode

Send your details to mac@uk.tiscali.com – and a MAC code will be provided within 5 days. Unfortunately we are not able to fast track such transfers, and this transfer may take the standard 10 to 30 days.

If you are unsure of which option to choose or need more information please email us on 186kinfo@uk.tiscali.com and we will respond within 24 hours, or access our Frequently Asked Questions here.

*Phone lines open from Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm
**Phone lines open from Monday to Friday 9am – 9pm

It seems like Tiscali decided to pull the plug on 186k Internet.

So 186k/EzeeDSL/Elite Internet/Mailbox Internet customers are now in the following boat:

1. Sign up with 1 of the 3 providers listed on the holding page.

2. Call Tiscali Business Services and request a MAC code and a temp username and password

I have already selected option 2.

I called Tiscali Business Services at around 10.15am this morning and got stright through to an operator, I didn’t have to go through a queue which was surprising. I got through to a very helpful chap that provided me with a temp broadband username and password that I can use for the next 30 days whilst I find another provider.

He also generated a MAC code for me that should arrive via post, in around 5 working days.

So all in all, despite feeling resentment towards 186k. I think a lot of credit has to go to Tiscali for the way they have handled the siuation. Back when the same thing happened with E7even, we were forced to sign up with 186k or go without broadband for a minimum of 30 days.

This time, at least Tiscali have given us 30 days of temp broadband access so we are able to choose our own provider if we wish to do so!

And just on a side point, if any of you are unsure about connecting to the Internet with your new Tiscali temp username and password. Feel free to leave a comment with your router name and model and I’ll be happy to help you out!

So the only question that’s left now is….Who should I choose for my new Broadband provider 🙂

I don’t live in an LLU enabled area, but as far as I know it should be coming to us sometime in the first half of this year, so I don’t really want to be tied into a long contract. So far on my list of potential choices are:

  • Zen
  • Sky
  • BT

Any other suggestions?

I’m sure there will be a lot of traffic to this page, so please do feel free to leave any comments you may have. Loads of people reading this will be in the same boat as you so we should be able to help each other out!

Thanks for reading,

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300 Responses to “186k, Elite Internet, Mailbox Internet Services Go Bust?”
  1. AyeWright says:

    Irate after my experience with tiscali’s Indian support, last night I gathered my notes from all the online research I’ve done on this fiasco, including a clutch of high level executive names, and their email addresses (easy to figure out, even if it’s not been stated: ‘firstname.lastname@uk.tiscali.com’), and fired off a strong letter of complaint to the CEO, cc to all the rest. Result? A slew of emails this morning, three phone calls, and not one but two new MAC codes – one was cancelled and cleared for whatever reason, and the newest is promised to be valid from 30 days from today – because I had asked about the allegation that regardless the shut off date for everyone is supposedly 12th February if you’ve not sorted it by then. Good luck everyone.

  2. Dave says:

    To doc, what 0871 number did you use exactlty? The one I got was the 08712657261 number. To AyeWright, did you use the the CEO names in your previous topic to email your complaints, i.e. mary.turner@uk.tiscali.com and Quinn.Mackenzie@uk.tiscali.com etc. and can you give me/us a little bit more info/help so that myself and others might try and follow your route to get out of this hell!

  3. wyn says:

    Would you consider posting your letter/e-mail on this site with addresses, so that the rest of us can now make their life a misery?

    12 days on and I have received no communication at all from either 186K nor Tiscali despite promises of phone-calls being returned.

    No response to e-mails and certainly no MAC code.

    • Gertie says:

      Look at me earlier post and contact nicholas. He sorted it out for me and I’ve now signed up with Newnet (voted best internet provider 2008). Good luck to all.

  4. Dan says:

    Good news everyone, I’ve excaped Tiscali/186k and am now flying on my IDNET connection!


    Good luck to all of you that are still having problems, fingers crossed you can escape before the temp broadband access runs out.

  5. Gertie says:

    Have been trying without success since 16th jan to get a valid MAC code (was given one but that was a duplication). Call centre in India useless. Email nicholas.piere@uk.tiscali.com for his help or call him on 0207 087 2197. He tells me he will sort out this mess and give me my MAC code so that I can migrate to Newnets. Good luck to all.

  6. AyeWright says:

    Hi Dave, Doc, Wyn, Gertie et al – just a quick post while at work. Brief answer: yes, my previous posts on here will be most helpful. Check the forums about tiscali like The-Scream’s – lots of information. I can’t write your letter for you, though; emphasise the urgency, your frustation, the lack of help from support, the breach of OFCOM rulings, name names and give dates. State clearly what you have done, and what you want, and when – give a firm deadline. Have you contacted OFCOM, ISPA? Do so, say so in your communication, and promise further action. Primary recipient is the CEO, and cc to as many names and emails as you can find online. Use google, that’s what I did – keywords like contact + ceo + tiscali for a start. Be firm. Persevere. Good luck again.

  7. wyn says:

    I have now received my MAC code which I have validated thro’ BT. However no near getting back on line having again re-visited 186K & Tiscali bacause of CHAP Authentication failure. I am told this is due to Tiscali not being prepared to asign my temp. username & password to my tel. broadband service line. Tiscali won’t budge & claim 186K are lying to me. And so it goes on.

  8. LostOne says:

    I’ve signed up to Plusnet, and I am waiting for the gears to turn.
    So far no reports that my MAC is invalid. My email says connection should go through next Monday. Fingers crossed until then.

  9. Graham says:

    Well done to those who have got a MAC and good luck to the rest who are still trying.

    Another point I think needs mentioning for those who are moving away is:
    Have you cancelled your contract with 186K, and confirmed it is cancelled?
    After emailing them on the 19th , I today noticed that my Medusa account details show the account is still active with the next payment date in March! I have finally managed to get through to 186k on the phone requesting they confirm my cancellation in writing. I got the impression that my earlier emails were ignored.

    • David J says:

      Good point, Graham.

      Last week I sent a “signed for” letter to 186k cancelling my contract on the basis that my connection no longer functioned. On checking the tracking number, I find that the postie was unable to deliver it, left a card, and it’s waiting for some 186k functionary to pick it up from the sorting office.

      I’m due to go live with O2 on Monday, and once that’s up and running, I’ll send a copy of the text of my letter by e-mail to 186k. By the way, so far I really can’t speak too highly of O2 – very impressive service, especially if you’re used to dealing with e7even, ezeedsl and tiscali!

      • Dan (el_passo) says:

        I phoned 186k to cancel and the guy on the phone said it had gone through.

        Just looked at the Medusa control panel and it says:

        “Order:***** – 2MB Home EzeeDSL (Pay Monthly) (T-Suspended)”

        So hopefully that’s me free of 186k 🙂

  10. wyn says:

    I spoke too soon. Placed order with BT Broadband only for MAC code received this morning from Tiscali to be rejected! Went back to 0871 and hopefully should get another within 48hrs.

    Stopped payments to Ezeedsl earlier in the week, but because I was paying by VISA card and could not get thro’ to Ezeedsl had to report card as ‘lost or stolen’. Luckily new card arrived this morning.

    And so this sorry saga goes on.

  11. Mark says:

    I got a MAC! I gave the Tiscali 0871 number another ring tonight (last rung last Wednesday) and was given it over the phone. Still yet to see if it is valid (does anyone who is moving to O2 know if their on-line sign up checks for validity or is it left to a human being?) Two emails to the mac@uk.tiscali.com email address had gone unacknowledged. And, strangely, about 40 minutes later I received a standard email from 186K in response to the 2 tickets I had raised nearly 2 weeks ago when this sorry business started. If only they had been quicker off the mark they might have retained me but hopefully it’s good riddance to them. I find it rather amusing that they’re losing customers in the same way that they gained so many!

    • David J says:

      Mark – yes, the O2 on-line sign up checks the MAC for validity. I know that for sure as it rejected the first one that Tiscali gave me.

  12. AyeWright says:

    I’m still receiving emails and phone calls from tiscali as a result of that email/letter of complaint. If only their entire operation was as functional.

    This may help some folks:

    our procedure for higher level complaints requires sending a written complaint to the following address:

    Tiscali Customer Services
    PO Box 14505
    B46 1BF

    Our Customer Care Department is available on 0871 222 3311
    end quote

    hadn’t come across this address or phone before!

    good luck

  13. Dave says:

    Right here is, hopefully, the last time I feel the need to contribute to this debate, or should that be debacle? After my previously mentioned plea to Tiscali’s Indian call center to give me another MAC over the phoneline, as the first two had failed, the guy wouldn’t budge and insisted that, after re-checking from his end, the mac was indeed a valid one. I thought I was snookered since my new ISP, o2 had already told me it was invalid. So after a few more hours of comtemplating doing something worse than commiting suicide, i.e. calling Tiscali’s “helpline” again, I decided to ring o2’s helpline instead late in the day and asked the guy if he could, just for the hell of it, check once more to see if the MAC given to me would work, and lo and behold it did! So was told to ring back again about eight hours later to confirm and once again was told that the MAC is good and I have been penned in for activation on 4/2/09. So to all of you that were given a “corrected” MAC from Tiscali it might be worth a punt and go back to your new ISP and ask them to try and validate it again. Thanks to all of the contributers on here and good luck to you all.

  14. Linda Wardil says:

    Some one called dan keeps sending me emails. Jim dose not live here no more, but this is my email address not his, so please dont call me jim thank you

    • Dan says:

      Hi Linda,
      Can you use the contact me link at the top of the page and send me your email address so I can remove you from the notifications list.

  15. Ian Shields says:

    As someone who was affected by the e7even fiasco (I set up a rival e7broadband web site in protest) I find this action against 186K quite funny. This is very similar to what happened when e7even customers were garden walled.

    I totally appreciate the experience for broadband users will not be great and I wish you all the very best sorting out a new provider.

  16. Chris says:

    I’ve been through a similar experience to Dan, from e7even onwards. This is a great opportunity to free myself from a mediocre service which I was effectively forced into after a truly awful service went bust. I rang the number Tiscali gave for obtaining a MAC and had to ring them again a week or so later when I didn’t receive an email (the operator had got the email address wrong). This time I got straight through to an operator who gave me the MAC over the ‘phone. The operator told me it was a valid code. We’ll have to wait and see about that, but it does seem a lot more reasonable than that time e7even went bust. I’ve now chosen to throw my lot in with Sky.

  17. wyn says:

    Have received second MAC code from Tiscali having had to wait another 48 hrs plus weekend, AND phoninbg them again. However, even with temp. username & password still cannot get broadband connection. Still CHAP authentication failure coming up on my Router Status (Netgear Router). Tried to reset router – no joy. Tiscali support will not entertain ANY idea of support; 186k no better. However I am in the process of migrating to BT Broadband. They say that the MAC code has been accepted. Hope therefore to be back in the “land of the living” within the next 5 “working” days.

  18. Adrian says:

    Don’t know if its related, but my site (and POP3 email) have all suddenly disappeared this evening. Hosted by freedomnames, which was taken over by 186k about 18 months ago.

    Can’t find anything anywhere!

    • daggerdanny says:

      Mmmm, same happened to me, been a couple of hours since I could retrieve my email, coincidence? temporary failure? who knows!

      • daggerdanny says:

        an update to me and anyone else, i also cannot connect to ezeedsl admin pages or even http://www.ezeedsl.co.uk

      • metrosexualteleman says:

        Looks like they have taken a hit at one of thier London telehouse cabinets. It may be their own kit that has gone offline or something to do with telehouse themselves.
        Normally they can recover the kit within an hour or so – if it has been a few hours then would seem to be something more major.


        • metrosexualman says:

          Noticed that everything came back just before 10am so either they worked all night on this or they had to wait for the 24 hour support staff to turn up at 9am to fix it. Just checked and no mention on the 186k status page of any outage in the last 24 hours. I expect they have more important things to work on than updating their customers… no change there then.

      • David J says:

        Migrated to O2 yesterday. Phew!

        Still it’s probably just the usual ezeedsl blip – the main 186k site still seems to be working.

        I’m a bit miffed that 186k refused to accept delivery of my “signed for” letter terminating our agreement. According to the PO it’s on its way back to me. I’ve sent the text in an email now. And I’ll send the letter back to them once it’s back in my hands.

    • Adrian says:

      Well, its back up this morning. No response to the email I sent to 186k asking about the downtime and nothing on the freedomnames status page.

      To be fair, I’ve never had issues since I joined in 2001.

  19. LostOne says:

    My migration happened yesterday, and I am now with Plusnet.
    Just one hiccup in that I couldn’t connect to the internet and had to ring their helpline, but after speaking to an op, I was finally online 10 minutes later.

    Good riddance to 186k. They have been nothing but hassle for me ever since they took over efh.

    For those of you still struggling to get your MAC, good luck. Those of you still with 186k, good luck too!

    Thanks to Dan for hosting this mini-forum. It made all the angst much easier to bear.

  20. wyn says:

    I have received confirmation that my 186k account has been cancelled. And boy, does it feel good!

    • David J says:

      Wyn – How did you manage to cancel it? I can’t get any reply from e-mails, and my letter is being returned as undeliverable. I’ve stopped my payments (Worldpay) anyway, but I’d like to draw a line under the whole fiasco. DaviD J

  21. wyn says:

    I rang 186k/Ezeedsl on 0870 122 2186 and spoke to a Simon. Like yourself I had stopped my Worldpay payment and had told 186k last week that I was moving to BT Broadband. Simon was able to confirm that I had gone over to BT and that my account was cancelled. Within 5 minutes I had received an e-mail from Worldpay also confirming account cancelled. This may have been purely cincidental. I’m probably still one month in credit – but hey if that’s the price I have to pay!

    • steve fuller says:

      I have been trying to cancel my worldpay with eezedsl (Internet Billing)but no luck so far. I have just had another payment taken out! I tried to cancel the payments via my banks website but there does not seem to be any way of cancelling Maestro direct debits.

      I have managed to get back online by using the temporary login details provided on 186k’s website and i have filled in the online form for them to migrate me to BT. But will this really happen? Emails to Tiscali re MAC code have not been replied to.

  22. JMVM says:

    Hi guys. Just to let you know that my move to O2 went smoothly
    Now connected and latest sync 14120 kbps (1.77MB/s) 1131 kbps (141kB/s)
    I have had an answer from EFH/186K, sating that they want to keep me as customer, etc,etc
    I did not had any World Pay agreement, and my old C Card is long been canceled
    On any case I have advised my bank not to allow any transactions to them
    I hope the rest of you guys get your situation sorted out asap

  23. metrosexualman says:

    Has anyone actually been transferred to Firenet successfully ???

  24. Dan says:

    Just another quick update for anyone still following the comments. I just received 2 emails from 186k saying my invoice was overdue for February (a month after I cancelled) and none payment may result in “damage to your credit rating and additional legal action”.

    Have sent a reply to them so I’ll keep you updated on what they say 🙂

    • DaviD J says:

      Me too! I’m not amused, and have replied accordingly, copying in the e-mail to me from their ISP support confirming my account had been cancelled. Idiots!

      • Gavin says:

        I have also received a double message this evening – though it does not say which month it is for. After being cut-off on the 15 January (and was also had poor service just before that) I emailed support saying I wanted to cancel. I had no response, but have not used the service since then and told them so. My last payment was 22 Dec, so I assume that would have taken me up to 22 January, and so covered the time they gave service.

        Please send any results from responses here so we can group together to stop this thieving company, threatening to affect our credit ratings to get money out of us …


        • Gavin says:

          I have not heard any further from 186k yet – has anyone else had a response to any reply they made?

          • Dan says:

            Nope, not heard a thing yet.

            • AyeWright says:

              I got two emails on the 18th too – to the same email, oddly. Replied and no answer or acknowledgement. Posted the email text too. Likewise, nada. 186k the same as it ever was in other words. Totally uncommunicative. If their billing system had been at all functional… but that’s their problem.

              • DaviD J says:

                Have just received the following: “Appologies for the delay in replying to your query.

                With all broadband accounts there is a cancellation period of 30 days which is stated in your Terms and Conditions whereby any payments during this time will be considered due.

                We would appreciate it if you could arrange a payment soon to enable your account to be closed.”

                They can whistle for it!

                • Gavin says:

                  David, when did you cancel – was this before or after getting cut off on January 15th?


                  • DaviD J says:

                    I cancelled my Worldpay payments on 16th Jan. I cancelled with Ezeedsl by recorded letter on 18th Jan, stating that following the cessation of their service without notice any agreement between us was null and void.

                    They didn’t appear to accept the letter, so I followed up by e-mail on 3rd Feb and subsequently by another letter on 15th feb (not recorded). I have an automated response to my e-mail on file, with a reference number.

                    I received this on 25Feb “In regards to your account, I have pass this to my accounts department to be closed down and finalised. Your payment agreement with ourselves has been cancelled so no further payments can be taken.”

                    I am waiting for my blood pressure to go down before composing a reply to their latest payment demand. 🙂

  25. DaviD J says:

    I am in the process of compiling a report and claim to go to Cisas which is the adjudication scheme that Ezeedsl and 186k belong to. I would suggest any other folk being pestered for money do the same.


    • Dan (el_passo) says:

      Let us know how you get on David. I received the same reply as you a few days ago, needless to say it isn’t getting paid.

  26. wyn says:

    I have heard no more since sending an e-mail response to their original demand to the effect that it is I who should be suing them!

  27. wyn says:

    See also my posting of Feb 4th.

  28. Gavin says:

    I have now heard back from 186k, asking for payment again – as follows:

    “Apologies with the delay in replying to your email and any inconvenience this may have caused.

    We have looked over your account and can gauge that your service was locked by a 3rd party Company called Tiscali.

    Our Support Team are very helpful and would have been willing to solve the problem if they had have received your call.

    Invoice number 391909 for Internet Services dated 19th January 2009 to 18th February 2009 remains outstanding as this invoice covers the 30 day cancellation fee as stated in your Terms & Conditions

    We would appreciate it if you would arrange a payment soon and clear the account.”

    • Mark says:

      That is outrageous!!!

      “Our Support Team are very helpful and would have been willing to solve the problem if they had have received your call.”

      What a joke – only the other day I received an automated reply to a ticket I raised through their medusa interface on 15th January!

  29. Gavin says:

    AS mentioned above, they want be to pay for the cancellation period, even though my service stopped on the 15th January. Also, they say Tiscali is a 3rd party, but it is someone they used to provide Internet access – so it is up to them to ensure I still get service, rather than making it sound that the service going is nothing to do with them.

    I did contact them (via Medusa) on 15th also saying I wished to cancel, and also only got an automated response recently. I did not want to continue with them anyway (e.g via Firenet), as just before Tiscali intervened I was getting less than 56kbps (sometimes < 20kbps) during the day due to them throttling me, as I had downloaded more than a “hidden” limit of 40GB in a month.

  30. Wortle says:

    I too am in this mess. I was away from home when the service ceased. I was unaware that I had to cancel as I had nothing to indicate that this wasnt yet another “transfer or else” situation. I have replied to there invoice demands that they should take the lost revenue dispute up with Tiscali.

    I would be interested to see if they could make this stand up in court. Are ofcom in a position to make a ruling…the way I see it they should be paying me for a) the loss of service b) a refund on the fortnight paid in advance and where no service was provided.

  31. I strongly recommend that you turn the No Follow off in your comment section.

    I’ll watch Google Webmaster Tools, and if the links don’t show up after a couple of weeks — I won’t go back to that blog again.

    Another suggestion: you should have a Top Commentator widget installed.

    Do Follow and Top Commentator will ensure that you have a successful blog with lots of readers!

  32. Fiona Anderson says:

    I’m also posting this on http://www.mattwardman.com/blog/2009/01/16/tiscali-186k-and-the-great-collapsing-efh-broadband-disaster-bye-bye-186k/ and have put that link at the bottom of my posting – please feel free to remove if it breaches blog ettiquette. Best wishes Fiona PS DO FEEL FREE TO DELETE THIS BIT FROM MY POSTING AS IT’S COURTESY TO YOU RATHER THAN FOR PUBLIC INTEREST.

    I was lucky enough to have a fairly pain-free escape from EFH, via Tiscali and ended up with O2.
    However, I’ve only just got round to writing to EFH again after my ‘signed for’ letter in January had been returned by the Royal Mail – unopened, and in response to their two threatening emails back in mid March.
    I found Matt Wardman’s letter so useful and encouraging that I based my reply on it but adapted it slightly as my internet use is not for business, and I was up and running on O2 v quickly, so didn’t incur many costs or much inconvenience, but DID incur some anxiety (and anger and frustration)!

    Please feel free to re-use or edit to your own circumstances – or indeed make suggestions for improvements in case I need to re-send it:

    Dear Sir / Madam


    I am writing following disconnection of internet service to my number XXXXXXXXXXX on Thursday 15th January 2009 at approx 0800, as a result of termination of your wholesale service on my account by Tiscali due to your “business dispute” with them.

    This termination of service has rendered our contract null and void. Therefore I repudiate my agreement with EFH with effect from 0800hrs on Thursday 15/1/2009, and terminate my account with effect from the same time and date.

    I am requesting a refund of £25.65 consisting of:

    £10 (15.65 / 31 days for daily rate = .50 per day. Times 20 days when we received no service from you = 20x.50 + £10) – part refund for the period from 15/01/09-03/02/09 – as although we paid for that in December, the service was stopped and our contract had therefore been breached.

    £15.65 – for the period from 4/2/09-3/3/09 – which left my bank account on 4/1/09, for invoice dated 7/1/09.

    Subject to EFH:
    1) refunding my line rental fees from you,
    2) confirming in writing that EFH have terminated my contract
    3) do not continue to ask for payments
    4) do not contact me after the resolution of this incident
    5) do not attempt to cause damage to my credit rating,

    I am prepared to overlook expenses incurred by me in clearing up the inconvenience caused by EFH to me at this time.

    If it is necessary for me to write to you again, I will add any costs incurred in to my claim.

    If you settle this claim in full by 14th May 2009 with a cheque for £25.65 sent to this address, I will accept that settlement as full and final settlement.

    Otherwise, I reserve the right to submit a further claim for expenses I occur in restoring my internet service, and in accessing Internet service in the meantime.

    In any case, I request that you send a response to this letter to arrive at the above address by 14th May 2009.

    Under your “standard terms and conditions”, your contract with me commits you (Clause 1) to “make reasonable endeavours to provide the service” to me and to “use reasonable endeavours to meet the service levels which may have been specified to me”.

    My service has been summarily disconnected without notice a due to a business dispute in which I have no part. You have not managed resolution of that business dispute reasonably so as to maintain my service, nor have you taken action to either inform me of the existence of this dispute, or that my service was liable to be disconnected without warning. I discovered I had been disconnected by a message on my screen sent by Tiscali.

    There have been no apparent attempts to contact me before or after the event, to reassure me, and to try to keep my custom.

    Someone I spoke to on 18/3/09 claimed that I’d been sent 6 emails, and if I’d not received them, my email address must be incorrect. It isn’t as it’s the one that’s always been used by EFH / 186K over the years I’ve been with them, and is also listed on the previous invoices from 186K, as well as receiving this email successfully.

    This is despite your claim to the media that “only a small proportion” of your users have been affected, which should make it even easier to contact them all with “reasonable” endeavours.

    Further, I instruct you not to attempt to take any more payments in respect of this account, and request that you return payment for the part of the charged period falling after January 15th.

    If a satisfactory resolution is not possible immediately, or if you contact me requesting further payment, a threat of legal action, or threaten to damage my credit rating, then I will consider taking further action – including a resort to the Small Claims Court if that becomes necessary.

    Yours faithfully

    I’ve sent it as a reply to their March emails, second class, and first class signed – but not put that in as I don’t want to warn them, and hope one copy might slip under their radar and get a response!

    I’ve also posted this on http://www.mattwardman.com/blog/2009/01/16/tiscali-186k-and-the-great-collapsing-efh-broadband-disaster-bye-bye-186k/ as they have a similar thread running.

    • Dan (el_passo) says:

      Thanks for the post Fiona, apologies it took so long to appear on the blog. It got held up in the “pending” comments queue and I only just noticed it today!

  33. craigh says:

    I’m still having the same problem with EFH/186K- I switch to Freedom to surf but they are still demanding a cancellation fee-I pointed out I hadn’t cancelled and to take it up with Tiscali -am awaiting their response!!

  34. Gavin says:

    I also had a further email from 186K asking for a months payment – I also moved to Freedom2Surf. They said I should not have believed the message from Tiscali saying they had stopped providing (despite them using the same trick with E7even). Also 186K said that they were also responsible for the interim connection (though I am not convinced as the address was on the Tiscali network).

    Note sure if I should pay the £15 they say I owe just to get them off my back – when could they start adding fees for late payment, debt collectors fees, etc.

    • craigh says:

      Got another reminder- I’ve answered as follows:

      “Please note I did not cancel this service nor did I have any intention of cancelling it.

      If it has been cancelled then someone else has done it without my authorisation.”

      They have responded as follows:

      “The service that you received was supplied by our wholesale provider at
      that time. The wholesale provider ceased to provide the service to us,
      meaning your connection was interrupted, further being suspended.

      Your account has been auto suspended as we have not received any
      instruction from yourself to migrate you to our BT Wholesale platform.

      If you would like to migrate to our BT wholesale platform this can be arranged as a new migration to us.

      As it stands at the minute we are no longer are maintaining your service and the account is closes with your final payment remaining.

      Please call our finance team to arrange payment.
      Tel: 0844 9912 186”

      I’m just going to ignore it for the time being.

  35. DaviD J says:

    I have just received notice from CISAS of the decision of the adjudicator, following my application to them on 16th April.

    They agreed with me on all points, and have said that EZEEDSL must apologize to me, close my account, confirm that no action will be taken that affects my credit record, and pay me the very reasonable amount of money that I requested for time/stationery/phone calls and inconvenience.

    In fact EZEEDSL did not even defend the action!

    I strongly recommend using CISAS to solve this problem, but note that it is an official legal adjudication programme, and you MUST conform to its procedures. Take time, print out all relevant information, e-mails, copies of proof of payments from Worldpay or whatever, copies of any correspondence sent to EZEEDSL.

    I’m delighted with the outcome, and am now waiting for EZEEDSL to settle up with me!

    • Mark says:

      That is brilliant! Congratulations! On CISAS’s web page it says you have to let the company know you have a problem with them – did you do this and if so how?

      • Gavin says:

        David, is it allowable to see what you sent to CISAS, so it could be used as a starting point for other people’s complaints?

  36. DaviD J says:

    I complained to EZEEDSL by e-mail and letter within a week or so of being cut off. I enclosed copies of these e-mails in my submission to CISAS. Also copies of their threatening e-mails, and copies of my last Worldpay payment.
    I also enclosed a copy of the first automatic acknowledgement from their customer service system, which at least proved that they had received my e-mail.

    It’s all quite straightforward, but of course everyone’s case is different, so it’s really a case of gathering all your communications together and then writing a brief linking statement in date order.

    I wrote it all out as a seperate document, and enclosed that with the CISAS application form. I did it by mail, as I thought it would be too cumbersome to do it online.

    • DaviD J says:

      Final Result.

      Just a update to say that I received my compensation payment from eZeeDSL, together with an apology, albeit a rather perfunctory unspecific one. Both the payment and the apology were received outside of the period after the adjudecator’s decision that CISAS set for them to be made, so needed chasing by CISAS to get some action.

      I can’t speak highly enough of the way CISAS handled this, and am still mystified by the actions/inactions of ezeeDSL/186k/EFH. A very strange way to run a company, IMHO.

      I am have now happily been with O2 since the ezeedsl/Tiscali fiasco, and they are in a completely different league.

      Thanks to all for advice, sharing stories and grief.

  37. Fiona Anderson says:

    Is anyone else having irregular contact with EFH, etc?

    I received this 28/5/09:

    Subject: [186k Group of Companies #662706] RE: 186k Account Notification
    > From: financeteam@186k.co.uk
    > Date: Thu, 28 May 2009 14:19:21 +0100
    > Hello,
    > From looking into your account, I can see the following is showing as
    > outstanding:
    > Invoice 394630 – 4th February 2009 to 3rd March 2009 – £15.65
    > This invoice is due as a final payment as per the 30 day cancellation
    > period stated in your terms and conditions along with the temporary
    > internet access issued by both parties in the dispute.
    > Please call us on 08451204010 to arrange payment. Once payment is made,
    > this order will be finalised and closed.
    > If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.
    > Kindest Regards,
    > Sean,
    > ISP Support

    I emailed a version of my previous corresp which failed to arrive:

    Date: Thu, 28 May 2009 14:22:46 +0000
    > From: MAILER-DAEMON@parallel.186k.co.uk
    > > Subject: failure notice
    > Hi. This is the qmail-send program at parallel.186k.co.uk.
    > I’m afraid I wasn’t able to deliver your message to the following addresses.
    > This is a permanent error; I’ve given up. Sorry it didn’t work out.
    > :
    > failed after I sent the message.
    > Remote host said: 550-This message scored 4.7 points and has failed to traverse this systems spam
    > 550-filter. Please contact 0871 224 2336 if you need direct support or to
    > 550-advise us if you believe this message was received in error for a
    > 550-legitimate support request mail. Alternatively, try sending the mail as
    > 550-plain text or including information as a link from the mail or attaching
    > 550-the extra information contained in the mail that may have led to the mail
    > 550 being judged as spam by this servers automated spam filter.

    I also sent it by regular post, and ’signed for’ again – no response to anything. Anyone had any other corresp?

    If they were sold, or taken over, anyone know where I would stand regarding them claiming I owe them a month’s rental, and my claiming they owe me a refund for non-provision of service?

    I was hoping not to go down the CISAS route as I didn’t keep records of everything, but maybe need to do it in order to gain proper ‘closure’ esp regarding credit rating.

    Best wishes