O2 UK hints at user compensation following 24-hour network collapse

Having restored its network back to normal, O2 UK's CEO apologised for the 24-hour outage and said the operator is now focused on restoring customer "confidence and trust in O2."

While not confirming the company will offer compensation to those affected, the operator said in a blog post that "we will be doing everything we can to make it up to them in an O2 way."

However, Richard Lloyd, executive director of the campaigning consumer organisation Which, wants O2 UK to offer compensation to all customers who paid for a service they couldn't use.

"People should also keep a log of any costs they incur to help with any claims for compensation," he told the Daily Telegraph.

The operator, according to the Financial Times, has been bombarded with angry customers on social media sites such as Twitter demanding compensation or refusing to pay their monthly bill.

But Sophia King, a lawyer who specialises in technology and media at Thomas Eggar, told IBTimes: "O2 states in its own Pay Monthly Terms & Conditions that 'the service [it provides] isn't fault free.' Like the majority of contracts, O2 has what is known as a force majeure clause which states that where things go wrong and those events are outside O2's reasonable control, O2 will not be liable for any loss suffered."

While suggesting that customers keep a note of any costs incurred as a result of the network fault, King adds: "It's unlikely that anyone will successfully be able to bring a claim against O2."

The company hasn't said why its voice and text network crashed.

The Register believes that the breakdown happened when subscriber details were being moved to Ericsson's Centralised User Database, which went offline during the process, leaving handsets unable to authenticate their users, according to sources.

Ericsson has been providing outsourcing services to O2 UK since 2009, which now extends into many parts of O2 UK's business operations.

For more:
- see this Daily Telegraph article
- see this Financial Times article
- see this IBTimes article
- see this The Register article

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