TalkTalk Lose Over 100,000 Customers

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Last October, when news of the latest TalkTalk data breach hit the newswire, there was little doubt that it would do tremendous damage to the company, both in the long and short term. The extent of that damage, however, was a matter for speculation. How many customers would abandon the service, how many would take up their offer of a free upgrade, and what does the hack mean for the future of the company? Now, we’ve got some, if not all, of the answers.

More specifically, TalkTalk have announced in their latest report that the company shed 101,000 subscribers (of which 95,000 were directly affected by the attack). That, alongside the overall costs of the hacks meant that the company were out of pocket to the tune of an eye watering £60 million. That costs includes IT, customer service lines, increased security and other associated costs. On the plus side, 489,000 customers took TalkTalk’s offer of a free upgrade, which will likely have stopped many customers from ditching the service. Indeed, even though the attack was catastrophic to the company’s PR and share price, revenues grew by 1.8% over the period.

If you don’t recall the circumstances surrounding the TalkTalk hack, let us fill you in. On the 32rd October of last year, TalkTalk customers wake to the news that the company had been the subject of yet another hack. The company announced that the website had been the target of a ‘significant and sustained’ cyber-attack, and that the attackers might have captured the personal details of customers, including names, addresses, account information and credit card/bank data.

TalkTalk said that’d received a ransom from a group claiming to be responsible, but behind all that, another scandal was brewing. Even before TalkTalk had announced the hack, some customers had been seeing unusual activity in their bank accounts, leading to accusations that TalkTalk actively tried to cover up the hack. That led to the Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee launching an investigation into the hack.

The company would later announce that far from revealing all their customers data, only 156,959 customer accounts were accessed, from which 15,656 sort codes and bank account numbers had been taken. That amounted to 4% of customers whose financial data is compromised. Nevertheless, the company found that the TalkTalk contact telephone number came under significant strain from customers looking to ditch the company, and many analysts predicted that the Leeds’ based company couldn’t continue in the light of this latest scandal.

Now though, it’s quite clear that TalkTalk isn’t in as dire a situation as many had predicted, and that they’ll fight back to earn new customers and rebuild their reputation. TalkTalk stock rose gently with the news that revenue was up, and so the rebuilding continues.

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