/ Technology

Mistaken identity – ever felt misled by a caller?

Man with bag over his head

We’ve heard from readers who’ve been conned into paying hundreds to ‘Microsoft support’ scam callers. Over a fifth of Brits have had one of these calls, but there’s another, albeit less serious, type of call.

There are calls from companies which don’t necessarily make out that they’re from a well-known company, like Microsoft. Instead, we’ve heard from readers who felt they’ve been led to believe that a familiar company has called them, only for them to be completely a different company.

This company might provide the service you need, whether broadband or mobile phone contract. And if you asked the right questions you might have discovered that they weren’t your provider. But they’re letting you part with your cash without explicitly stating who they are.

A familiar conversation with an unfamiliar caller

For example, one Which? member entered into a new mobile phone contract under what he believed to be false pretences. He had been signed up to O2 for about five years and so when he got a call offering him a brand new handset and the same package for less money, he thought his loyalty was being rewarded. He accepted the upgrade, but it was only when he received an email after the call that he discovered that he had not been speaking with O2, but with a company called E2Save.

He was convinced that he had been talked to someone from O2, and had entered into a contract with a new provider without realising. Thankfully, since this agreement was made over the phone, he had time to cancel thanks to the Distance Selling Regulations. The question is, have more people been affected?

Have you been called by a company like E2Save? Were you encouraged to ‘upgrade’ your phone contract while believing you were talking to your existing provider?

Kerry brown says:
12 March 2014

Silly me didn’t see the threads about e2save only found out about this when my new phone arrived and it broke so I took it to 02 and they know nothing about my upgrade so now apparently I have 2 contracts

I also get many calls about renewing my o2 contract and unless you specifically ask the them, they don’t make it obvious who they are. They often say they are calling on behalf of o2.
My number did not originate on o2 but there seem to be an awful lot of people on o2 receiving these calls.
I think these other companies must have got their call list from o2 which should make o2 liable for all the mis-sold contracts etc.

adrian says:
11 June 2014

i had a phone caal off e2save claiming they were calling on behalf of tmobile and ee, my provider offering me an upgrade. i accepted but as i didnt like the mobile i received i returned it within the 7 day period. they have received the phone and keep tell me they are trying to cancel the roaming network which has been switched already on my number, but three weeks on and i am still connected to ee and not a happy bunny. as my network is in transit i am unable to upgrade with tmobile, my provider until ee has been removed from my account. how do i get out of this, i have already contacted ee and tmobile several times but no joy. thank you for any advice..

David says:
18 July 2014

I received what I thought was a call from my mobile provider O2 to renew my existing contract as a loyal customer with the offer I would receive a £50 cheque cash back. As I run my own business I accepted the new sim only deal over the phone (time is precious to me and it was convenient to do the deal then).
I received my new sim from O2 the next day in the post and my mobile continued to function.
However, when I had not received my cheque after 28 days and after calling O2 it was realised that the contract was with E2Save (retail division of Car Phone Warehouse). I tired to call E2 Save, every trick under the sun exists not to take your call (e.g. automated messages, push button loops, no answers, expensive 0871 number, next call will be answered in 45 mins). I visited several Car Phone Warehouse retail shops to chase my claim – they all said they have no obligation as its an E2Save contract
I tried on line and their cash back web page just does do what it says it will do when I tried on several occasions to make a claim for my £50 cheque.
So I wrote a letter to the address given on their web page asking for my cash back – they say they will repsound in 7 working days. Still no response from their office 14 working days later.
I have wasted much time in trying to get my £50 cash back that was promised to me by E2Save. If I had known it was E2Save who called me in the first instance I would have not agreed a new contract
Their operation deceives and their procedures are near fraudulent and I will be complaining to OFCOM.

Jonathan says:
17 September 2014

I just got tricked by this company for the same reasons everyone has posted. I called them back 3 hours afterwards after realizing they had sold me an entirely different contract to the one they promised over the phone. They said it has been cancelled, now I just have to wait and hope it really has been cancelled and I do not run into any hidden costs…

E2Save – what can i say. They are a subsidiary of Carphone Warehouse and have access to the data of people who upgrade is due. They are deliberately misleading and present themselves as CPW. They guy I spoke with – Stephen Chambers (if that is his real name)was very cocky very confident and assured me that I was getting a great deal down from HeadOffice. he was to send confirmation of order through but never came. When I rang CPW back they said that it was not through them but still a genuine call. I have advised them that I wish to cancel the order as I have felt duped and missold. Their business model is not far off being unethical. Have spoken with Grace customer service at E2Save and cancelled order. You are well within your rights to do so under the distance selling act. If something sounds to good to be true then is most probably is. Be Warned!!!

Jim Gourlay says:
27 December 2014

E2save —– shocking customer service – this company have left a 70 year old woman just out of hospital after a life threatening problem with out a phone.

Only 2 hours after being contacted about an “UPGRADE” my mother cancelled the upgrade at my request (I used to work in the cellular industry) as it didn’t suit her requirements and indeed would have cost her more money rather than save her (no actual review of her spending and usage habits was done).

E2Save then did not respond to 2 calls and an email and my express instruction to not process the upgrade – all done within 24 hrs of the original order.

The phone arrived and was not opened but immediately returned…..should have been an end to it but no, 4 days later no phone, bsim switched off and no way of reversing the situation, being 70 she had no idea that while out her phone was not working!

She has to be in contact with the hospital 24/7 thank goodness that she didn’t need to ake an emergency call.

Hats of to Orange for performing a sim swap FOC to reenable the phone however we cannot now upgrade her aging blackberry phone due to the upgrade dates being changed to 2016! and as I speak over 10 days since the equipmet was returned and confirmed as returned are still incorrect.

Word of warning, any call reporting to be reviewing your contract cause you are due an upgrade may not be your network provider but a company that are a sales partner trawling the upgrade database.

As I type this I am still trying to sort it out at least she has service now thanks to Orange.

[This comment has been edited to align with our community guidelines. Thanks, mods]

Julie rudkin says:
17 February 2015

I was aware my mobile phone was due for an upgrade and was contacted by E2 save. I was lead to believe I was speaking to O2 direct. It was only when I changed my mind about the model of phone and contacted O2 was I made aware of the company. I have attempted to contact them to cancel but no one seems to be able to assist with my query!!

Scott says:
2 April 2015

Today I received a call from a phone company pretending to be from my current phone company the Car Phone Warehouse head office and sold me an upgrade package! I asked and got them to confirm that they were the CPW 2 to 3 times, they assured me they were from the CPW! After receiving a text message from them tonight I’ve found out that the real company that called me today are E2save!!!!! How do I now go about cancelling this?

Morning Scott, thanks for your message – I’m sorry to hear about the contract you signed up to, believing it was from Car Phone Warehouse. As Harriet mentioned in the article, since this agreement was made over the phone, you do have time to cancel via the Distance Selling Regulations:


Rob Wheat says:
30 July 2015

The o2 , E2Save scenario as reported by Harriet is one which has actually made my life hell now for around 2 years, with the repurcushions to be felt for a long time to come.
I to received a call back in Feb/Mar of 2013, from E2save, stating that I was due an upgrade on my o2 mobile phone. Though surprised as I was only 12 months into a 24 month contract, the reduced monthly tariff was welcomed. After the call I got worried that I had been scammed. Not by o2, but by E2save. On the call I was told I would get a new handset, which ‘I could do with what I liked including selling’. Due to work commitments and being concerned over the new bill, I waited until my next o2 bill before swapping over my sim and using the new phone. I sold my old phone, as many people do when a contract is over and has been replaced. Only when I had started using the new phone did I get a letter from o2, stating that I must return the other handset, or pay £300 charge. This came as a shock, but I called o2, and agreed to pay off the £300 in £100 monthly instalments. This was accepted and though perturbed about how this had occurred I carried on, paying the 1st £100 instalment as agreed. However in the next 2 months I was repeatedly cut off, and then reconnected by o2 (when I called), with their customer services agreeing the cut off should not have happened. After at least a dozen occasions, including when I was abroad (away from my family), and once when I was waiting for a new job decision, I was cut off again. Only to be told this time that I couldn’t pay off the owed phone in instalments and If I couldn’t pay off the owed immediately I would be disconnected permanently. I did not have the money to do this, so I was disconnected, placing my account in default. I then received a bill for over £1900, without any justification of the amount. When I followed this up with o2, they delayed in providing me with feedback and my debt was passed to a collector, with the bill now climbing to over £2200, again with no justification. I continued to endeavour to find out what the bill entailed and I did of course dispute that any money was owed due to the way this had come about. The long and the short, is that many months later, when the debt had actually been passed to another debt collector (money owed dropping to £1900+ again), o2 finally agreed that the debt was wrong, that it was actually only £1200 approx. Fearing the worse for my credit rating I made an agreement with the debt company and cleared the bill satisfying the debt. Now, almost 12 months later, myself and my wife have been turned down for a mortgage as the whole issue is shown as a Default on my credit record. I believe not only o2, but e2save and Car Phone Warehouse have a case to answer here, and I am seeking legal advice now to get the default removed from my credit record, otherwise it will now sit there for another 5 years. Any advice on this would be appreciated.

Did the call back in Feb/Mar sound like it was o2 calling you and you only realised later that it was E2Save?

An awful lot of o2 customers seem to get these calls including me and unless you specifically ask them, they give you the impression they are actually o2. Even though I was out of contract years ago, they still kept phoning me around the anniversary of the contract trying to get me to sign up with a free phone that when I checked was a really cheap one.

These calls have to be linked to o2 somehow.

I have just signed up to a contract with e2 save today. I found the link of ‘best deals’ from Money Super Market .com. I notice this feed has been up for 2 years. How is this company still trading? I’m worried I am not going to be able to get out of this contract. It all seemed a little too good to be true and from looking at their facebook page comments from customers, it looks like it is. I feel duped.

Becca says:
1 October 2015

E2Save don’t change your provider, they upgrade O2 & EE customers. They’re a part of the Carphone Warehouse and are fully authorised to do said upgrades. Whoever wrote this is a nob.

Janos Muller says:
25 November 2017

Terrible company. if you see this feedback, DO NOT BUY MOBILE PHONES FROM THIS COMPANY. I still didn’t get my new phone after 4 weeks. Completely unusable group including carphone warehouse and thephonespot.com as well.