Than that of “MegaFon” will result in a major accident in its history

Photo: Vadim Skryabin / TASS

The network of “MegaFon” for which subscribers in Moscow and several cities were left without communications for almost half a day on may 19, became the most massive in the history of the company. The operator is preparing to offer subscribers payment, but it’s unlikely to be money, discounts on services

On Friday, may 19, from 12:00 GMT subscribers of “Megaphone” in Moscow and several major cities of the Volga region (for example, in Ufa, Samara, Nizhny Novgorod) began to complain of problems with voice and other services. The operator could restore normal operation of the network only after 22:00 GMT. The accident was the most ambitious in the history of “MegaFon”.

As explained by the representative of the company, the problem arose from the update software installed in the data processing system of the company. It was about the software and hardware of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise. Before the advent of the official version of the experts thought that the problems could be associated with the HLR (home location register) — house register, which allows to identify the subscriber in the network, what services he paid for and should receive.

MegaFon did not say how many subscribers were affected by the accident. According to AC&M, at 31 December 2016 operator in Russia was 75.6 million mobile subscribers, according to this indicator the company was the second after MTS with a market share of 30%. The size of the subscriber base in Moscow and the Volga region is not disclosed. At 30 June 2015 (the latest data) at “the Megaphone” in Moscow was of 13.05 million subscribers, or 32% of the market, been evaluated by AC&M. in the Autumn of the same year in the capital earned a fourth mobile operator “T2 RTK holding” (Tele2), but did his share of existing players, no data.

Payback for the accident

The General Director of “MegaFon” Sergey Soldatenkov in Friday’s official address announced that the company will provide compensation “to those subscribers who have been affected by the accident”. What will be the compensation, to whom it will be provided and on what basis is still unknown. The operator promised to provide details in the beginning of the work week.

“Daughter” “the Megaphone” the company “Skartel” (provides mobile services under the brand Yota on the network “Megaphone”) on Friday announced that it would pay subscribers up to 20 million rubles of compensation due to a failure on the network. As explained by the representative of Skartel, compensation will be provided in the form of discounts on telecommunication services. “We select individually the compensation for each customer that encountered a problem on may 19. The total amount of compensation is calculated based on the number of users affected by the accident, and provide them with discounts,” he said. In order to receive compensation, clients will need to contact support. Those who did this during the Friday, got the payment default. When the operator ceases to accept applications for compensation, has not been determined, said the representative of Skartel. Will there be a “Megaphone” to take such a model as the basis for developing their own, the interlocutor of RBC does not know.

Himself “MegaFon” can also claim compensation from Hewlett Packard Enterprise, suggested the source of RBC in the company of a partner operator. “There is a special contract SLA (service level agreement), which stipulates that if the network ceased to work or services are not available for a large number of users, the failure must be corrected within four hours if part — for eight. Exceeding these values must be offset a certain way. If between MegaFon and HP was concluded such a contract, the operator can claim compensation”, — said the interlocutor of RBC. The source of RBC in another partner company “Megaphone” I believe that Hewlett Packard in any case to pay compensation. It not a question of money. “Most likely, it will be a voucher to buy a certain amount of HP equipment,” said one of the interlocutors RBC.

Photo: Safron Golikov / Kommersant

He suggested that “the Megaphone” will try to put the situation as an error HP. “The latter wants to show that it is not to blame, but so that not to spoil relations with MegaFon and other operators, — says the representative of the partner company. — However such a major accident is usually the result of a combination of several factors, not just problems with the hardware and software, but also the actions of the operator”.

The representative of “MegaFon” declined to comment on whether its contract with Hewlett Packard compensation in such cases. To receive the comment of the representative of Hewlett Packard at the time of writing failed.

Earlier, the head of the Society for the protection of the rights of consumers Mikhail Anshakov told RBC that under the law the consumer has the right to present a statement of claim was a breakdown in communication or lack thereof and require an appropriate reduction of the price for the service. Subscribers may also qualify for additional payments if they can prove it in court. According to partner legal Bureau “Padva and Epshtein” Pavel Gerasimov, subscribers will need to prove the losses from the lack of communication, that is, among other things, to establish a causal connection between the actions of the perpetrator and the ensuing adverse consequences. “It will not be easy, — said Gerasimov. — Here, probably, we can talk about compensation of moral harm, and in some extraordinary cases or when the desire to “PR”. Gerasimov believes that such claims are likely to be regulated by the operator in the pretrial order.

According to a source RBC in one of the partner companies of “MegaFon”, most of the claims the operator may submit corporate clients. “The question here is how the Pact was made between them and the operator that it was described. Because some part of the service was affordable,” he said.

The reaction of subscribers

As previously said RBC General Director of “TMT Consulting” Konstantin Ankilov, the accident should not lead to a reduction in the subscriber base of MegaFon. He explained that from a single network failures nobody is insured, and the opinion of the subscribers of the operator is not built in one day. The analyst iKS-Consulting Maxim Savvatin believes that the consequences for “MegaFon” will depend on what compensation the company will provide to customers. In his opinion, the image losses are not directly related to the discounts and the amount of compensation. “More importantly, how the operator worked in this difficult situation. In General, MegaFon coped fine, given the magnitude and uncertainty,” said Savvatin, although he stipulated that the operator was required to inform subscribers via social networks and instant messengers, and through traditional communication channels. The analyst iKS-Consulting did not assess what might be the compensation of MegaFon subscribers, but suggested that, as in the case of Skarlet, it will be some discounts or bonuses to monthly subscription fees or payments, additional packages of minutes or Internet traffic. “Perhaps the correct way is to give yourself subscribers a choice of a few options,”- said the analyst.

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