Telekom Malaysia Needs an Overhaul

Telekom Malaysia must take serious efforts to improve its services, as it is the oldest and biggest telecommunications service provider in the nation. There have been numerous complaints which have not been dealt with properly.

The complaints that CAP has received we have taken up with the Malaysian Communication & Multimedia Commission (MCMC), Consumer Forum Malaysia (CFM) and TM as well but we have not received satisfactory responses.

There have been inordinate delays in TM rectifying service interruptions. We would like to highlight a case that we have received that shows TM’s inefficiency in dealing with service interruptions.

The following is the chronology of events for this case showing the 3 incidents where TM’s phone and internet service broke down and the reports that were lodged with TM:

I) The complainant’s phone and internet broke down for the first time on 22/12/2014 and they subsequently lodged their first report. TM did not fix the problem so they made a second report on 3/1/2015. After that their TM line was working until 29/1/2015 where it stopped working again and they made their third report. Their TM line was fixed a few days after that. There was no proper internet or phone service for nearly a month.

II) The second incidence of TM service breakdown began on 22/3/2015 where they made their first report with TM and a second report on 28/3/2015. Their phone and internet services were fixed soon after the second report. It took nearly one week to restore service.

III) The third time their phone and internet service was interrupted was on 8/5/2015 and they lodged a report with TM on the day itself. Their TM line was restored on 23/5/2015. That is two weeks later.

According to TM, in their verbal correspondence with the complainant, the first breakdown was caused by “an error in TM’s system” but in their official reply to CAP they stated that the issue was caused by “cable theft”. The second breakdown was caused by “faulty card” and “jumper wire disc & modem needs to be reconfigured”. We find that these excuses are unacceptable.

The question that we want answered is why did it take TM so long to fix these problems, be it cable theft or modem reconfiguration? Take a closer look at the “chronology of events” above and you will realise that the complainant has not had proper phone and internet service for the past 5 months.

Another incident that should be noted is the one where the entire KOMTAR area has been experiencing TM service interruption since last month – a news feature stated that nearly 10,000 users have been affected.

According to TM the problem is due to some piling and other construction work happening in the nearby vicinity. However, before development plans are approved by MBPP, they must have been sent to TM for its approval and to impose any conditions if necessary.
Since they should have studied the developers construction plans and would have know that they had cables in the area where construction was being carried out; TM should have imposed conditions where a TM official must be present at the site before any construction work commenced.

Furthermore, if TM did impose such conditions and the developer did not comply with said conditions, has TM taken up the matter with the local authorities and instituted a legal claim against them?

Other complaints CAP has received with regards to TM’s bad service which we have either handled or forwarded to CFM/MCMC are as follows:

> TM service being abruptly disconnected despite regular monthly bill payments.

> Bad service – TM takes too long to fix problems.

> Unfair charges – subscribers told to pay even when they are not getting the TM phone and/or internet service.

> Loud, noisy and crackling sound over the receiver.

> Internet is very slow – users are not getting the bandwidth they pay for.

> Lodging a complaint with TM is time consuming and a hassle.

> TM phone and internet services interrupted for weeks or even months on end in some cases.

> Keeping customers deposits even though the customer does not get phone and/or internet connectivity at all and they request a refund.

> TM does not inform its users about changes to their system – example: credit limit which was implemented starting January 2015.

> Details not printed properly in TM bills – credit limit stated is much more than the actual credit limit for an account.

In light of all the problems subscribers are having with TM, CAP would like to call on the ministry to set up a special committee to look into the quality of service provided by TM and to come up with ways to drastically improve said service.

Press Statement, 4 June 2015