TalkTalk and Tiscali UK have been slapped with a £3 million fine by the communications regulator for incorrectly billing customers.
Ofcom originally launched an investigation into TalkTalk and Tiscali UK in July 2010 following more than 1,000 complaints.
It found that both companies had wrongly issued bills to consumers for services they had not received, in particular to consumers who had closed their accounts.
They did so in just over 62,000 cases between 1 January and 1 November 2010. Ofcom issued both with a legally-binding notification in November 2010 and set them a deadline of 2 December 2010 to take steps to sort out their billing problems.
TalkTalk and Tiscali UK were also required to take steps to remedy the harm they caused to consumers by 2 December 2010, for example, by paying refunds to affected customers.
TalkTalk and Tiscali UK have paid over £2.5 million in refunds and goodwill payments to over 65,000 affected consumers.
But despite these steps, the companies still incorrectly billed almost 3,000 consumers between 2 December 2010 and 4 March 2011.
"Ofcom has therefore issued TalkTalk and Tiscali UK with a financial penalty to reflect the seriousness of their breach of the rules and to act as a deterrent to them and other telecoms companies who must comply with the rules," said the regulator in a statement.
The companies got away with paying an even larger sum as they have taken steps to improve their systems and paid refunds to customers
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