I wonder if you could get involved on behalf of my wife, aged 74. She took out a contract with O2 on behalf of our granddaughter, then 17, now 19, who is now part-time employed on a minimum wage.
Your wife was concerned about her credit rating and so paid the £817.50 in full. Now O2 has agreed to refund half of this and so is reimbursing £408.75.
O2 said, “Our terms state that customers are responsible for call charges up to the point of contacting us. We do recommend that customers keep a PIN protection on their mobile and their SIM card, to help protect them from unauthorised use.”
As to the last point in your letter, O2 said, “It’s not our approach to leave any customer without access to their mobile without having had a chance to speak to them.
“Secondly, we don’t always receive call data from the foreign network in real time so it’s not as reliable as the customer telling us when the phone is stolen.”
I asked O2 to clarify what someone in your granddaughter’s position should do after a mobile phone goes missing. It said the account holder, who was in this case your wife, as your granddaughter was then under 18 and so could not have a mobile phone contract herself, should call O2 as soon as possible. O2’s 24-hour number is on the Help & Support section visible on the home page of its website.
You said your granddaughter was on a limited budget and it was difficult to call from public telephones abroad. Nor does she speak Spanish.