Telecom has tracked the origin of abusive txt messages sent from one of its call centres to five different customers.
The company's fraud and technical teams tracked the txts to the Manila call centre operated on Telecom's behalf by contractor Sitel.
Telecom and Sitel have identified four individuals involved and suspended them pending further investigation.
Because of the seriousness of the complaints and content of the messages, the appropriate local authorities will also be notified of the activity, Telecom said in a statement.
Telecom’s general manager customer services Trish Keith says all of Telecom’s customer service teams set themselves the highest standards and will be feeling let-down by the irresponsible actions of these few individuals.
“We have over 1500 team members in New Zealand and 800 in Manila and they will all be massively disappointed by this event."
The name of the individuals involved in the abusive messages will not be released by Sitel or Telecom.
Telecom has contacted the customers who our records show received the texts to apologise, assist them and keep them updated on the investigation and its outcomes.
Laws: complaint ignored
The first "F*** you" txt message came to public attention after a caller to Michael Laws RadioLive show - "Vanessa" - called to complain about one of the obscene messages, sent on February 6.
Telecom launched its investigation on Wednesday.
Speaking Wednesday on Campbell Live, Mr Laws said he "could almost accept" that the txts may have come from a rogue employee or hacker, but that the bigger picture was that Telecom had ignored Vanessa's complaint until he took up her cause this week.
Today Mr Laws weighed in with: “We said that the Manila call centre appeared to be the source, and so it has proven.
“But the wider issue here is that Telecom’s internal complaints mechanism took no action. My constituent only went public after getting no action on her complaint after the offensive text. That’s when she approached me for my assistance.”
Mr Laws said the incident “rather proves that ordinary people need to go to the mayor or the media to get action. That should not happen.”
The mayor has yet to comment on rumours the four fired Filipinos have been hired by Whanganui council to answer letters from school children.
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