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Our service outage on Friday.

handy giff-staffer

As you will be aware we had a full service outage on Friday.  This was due to a major water leak at one of our third party suppliers which knocked out both our primary and backup systems. The outage began at 10.10am and lasted until just after 6pm, when calls, texts and data were working again.


During the outage we worked with our supplier to fix the problem as quickly as possible and made it our priority ensure that all our members were kept up to date with the latest developments.  We are extremely upset to have this happen to our members and are committed to doing our utmost to prevent issues like this from happening again.


I’m pleased to report that things ran smoothly over the weekend and we used the time to fully repair everything and tidy up individual problems caused by the outage. For the more technically minded, Nigel, our CTO , has started a thread in the community which will go into the detail of the outage and what we have done, and will be doing to prevent it’s recurrence.


This year, as we grow as a company, we are committed to making substantial investments in our infrastructure. Due to Friday’s outage we will be reviewing these plans with the intent of bringing forward investment in capacity and resiliency. I’d also like to assure you of our commitment to making the giffgaff experience as good as possible.


It has been amazing to see the messages of support and the suggestions that we should make a charitable donation as a way of making up for Friday’s outage.  We therefore intend to make a £10,000 donation to a charity of your choice.  The charities are ones you nominated for Payback in December  -  to vote just use the polling buttons on the main blog page before the end of the week.  

mad scientist
>@pjr that's a bit like the old 'cars left in the customer< Take it up with giffgaff.

@pjr that's a bit like the old 'cars left in the customer< Take it up with giffgaff.


I've no desire to.

mad scientist
@ jimryder It seemed you had an issue with giffgaff's T&C but I must have been mistaken!

This is the message I sent to Giff Gaff. It was not to look for individual treatment but to see a proper reponse. Stating that you'll make it up to customers should mean some sort of addition of minutes or a similar sweetner. Nice and all as it is to donate to Charity it deflects from the core issue of service provision.  


At the end of the answer to my complaint they recommended looking at this thread, which leads me to believe there are enough customers unhappy about the Giff Gaff charity decision.


My message:


This message is to express my dissatisfaction with the level of service
from Giff Gaff. Your experiment with providing support from the user
community is something I support and wish you well with. However, first and
foremost your duty must be to provide the core service, which we all pay
for, in a consistent and reliable fashion. Too often I've have dropped
calls, unsent texts and delays of texts received for hours. The service
outage last friday caused major inconvenience to me and no doubt to all of
your customers. Never before have I had a loss of service like that from a
mobile provider.

Admirably the cause of the outage was explained. Accidents happen and
anyone can make mistakes. It's how we act after a mistake that is the
measure of an individual or organisation.

The message sent out at the time of the service outage was that all
customers would be compensated for this. The message now coming out is a a
charity is to be made a donation to make up for the service disruption.

As far as I'm concerned Giff Gaff can donate as much and as often to all
the causes it likes. But what's that got to do with non-provision service?

The network failure was a big let down.

This charity response to it is another let down.

Where are the grown ups?



This is their response.


Charity donation is not the answer

Discussion Thread
Response (Christopher Donnelly) - 27/03/2012 02.47 PM
Hi Fergal.

Thank you for contacting us at the member relations team as regards the outage.

Reference number: 120325-001036

I would like to firstly apologise to you for the incident on the 16th March 2012 in which our Network failed due to matters beyond our reasonable control, as you are aware.

Unfortunately, while I can empathize that although this issue was not your fault as it was also not the fault of giffgaff and any claims for loss of earnings or compensation are covered under the Terms and Conditions paragraph 12 & 13 (Limitation & Liability, Matters Beyond Our Reasonable Control).

At the time of the outage we stated that we would try to make it up to our customer base but this was not defined as a monetary compensation to individual accounts. The charity donation and a large investment in improving our infrastructure to prevent any future outages are how we've decided to try and react in a positive way. This decision was made due to the suggestions and support of the community.

More details on this issue can be found here:

As I hope you can appreciate this stance is taken with all customers and we cannot make individual exceptions.

Kindest regards,

Member relations team



 Member relations team ?






@pjr wrote @ jimryder It seemed you had an issue with giffgaff's T&C but I must have been mistaken!

You are indeed mistaken @pjr. My 'issue' (or I'd prefer to say the point I was making) was that you were incorrectly stating T&C's as gospel. They are only one parties views on an agreement and are not always binding.

mad scientist
@jimryder So you do have an issue with the T&C! I'm not 'incorrectly' stating anything. I'm posting the current giffgaff T&C. If you think they are wrong, or you have an issue with the then, as I say, take it up with giffgaff!

@pjr... er.. no... I think you need to re-read. 

mad scientist
@jimryder ditto!