FIRST, I’M ABSOLUTELY AMAZED (and relieved) that someone else has experienced the exact same problem with their MTN 3G card as I have. I have also tenaciously taken this issue up with MTN – which has taken many, many hours of time, effort and frustration, particularly when dealing with MTN’s extremely useless service centre consultants.
My situation also commenced in October 2008 when I received a bill for R6 700 for my data card. (My previous bills were averaging R300 to R600/month). When I visited the service centre at the Pavilion, Westville, even the consultant agreed there was definitely a problem. I received a subsequent bill for November of approx R5 000 (two weeks usage, as by that time I’d completely stopped using my 3G). After two months of constant visits to the Pavilion service centre my query was eventually submitted to MTN’s “engineers”. However, nothing yet has been resolved – now one month later.
Like Myhill, I also inspected my laptop for viruses. However, nothing abnormal was found. I also installed a network process monitor software program that identifies – real-time – the Internet activity when logged on. I found that when I activated my 3G card there was an incredible amount of activity (sending and receiving) and communication with the MTN server (services.mtn. co.za:http). However, I hadn’t even activated the Internet explorer. Furthermore, whenever my 3G was activated a program file called updateUI.exe constantly wanted to activate, which was also very strange. I’ve submitted those activities as “proof” to MTN.
As I don’t require a portable connection I’ve since obtained ADSL from Telkom and for three times the amount of data (capped) I’m paying three times less than MTN 3G. I’ve also received excellent service from Telkom; their communications skills and follow up are excellent, which I can’t say for MTN. MTN’s feedback and internal system for handling queries is nonexistent and their call centre unbelievably useless.
I agree with Myhill’s view that there’s possibly a scam within MTN. It would be a good idea for CEO Phuthuma Nhleko to take an interest.