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Porting Nightmares

Zzz2
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Hello

 

I really need some people who know what they are saying and doing to look into things for me... I have seen what I think are a number of threads on here where @O2Lisa was addressed.  Hoping that someone such as @O2Lisa can help.

 

Spent over two hours yesterday evening (Dec 27) talking with someone from O2 CS (overseas in S.Africa...not sure of the correct spelling of his name...maybe simply Andre...didn't ask him for its spelling).  He was supposed to be calling me back today, but he hasn't.

 

Anyway, so here are the sequences of events.  Obviously, I don't know where or who the problem lies with.  As it is probably well-known, Lyca's CS can be quite literally dreadful.

 

A business number that I have had for 15 or 16 years was, briefly, with O2.  I submitted a port-in request to Lyca on Friday, October 20 before 5PM and selected Monday, 23.

 

The porting didn't seem to complete fully, because a) sending "Number" to 2020 from the O2 SIM and dialling *132# from the Lyca SIM both returned the same number and, b) service didn't drop from the O2 SIM — O2-UK remained (when porting, I always leave the old SIM in a device to wait for the service to drop).  I realized that there was a problem when calls/msgs from non-Lyca numbers were being routed to the O2 SIM, whereas calls/msgs from Lyca numbers were routing to the Lyca SIM.  Split service, it appeared.

 

Contacted the Gaining Provider, Lyca... despite clearly explaining the problem in an email, on November 3, a call from an 020 number arrived, routed to the O2 SIM.  Suspected that it may have been Lyca, but decided not to answer it, just in case... 13 minutes later, a SM was received from Lyca (routed to the Lyca SIM, seeing as the Sender ID was LYCAMOBILE).  It stated: "Lycamobile would like to confirm that your enquiry relating to Unable to receive calls after porting, request number ******** was resolved as follows resolved., you can call 322 for further information".  Clearly, it seemed as though someone from Lyca simply picked up a phone, dialled the number, heard a connection, thought there wasn't a problem, and closed the complaint.  Kind of stupid really.  I guess that if they'd have allowed their call to continue to ring, they'd have heard: "Welcome to the O2 voicemail.....," and hopefully then realized that there in fact was a problem...

 

A week or so earlier (October 26), I wondered what might happen should I attempt to request a PAC from both O2 and Lyca SIMs.  O2 returned a code, whereas Lyca didn't ("Sorry. your PAC request has failed.....").  I provided the O2-issued PAC to Lyca in an email with the thinking that they could have possibly used it to get the number fully ported in or something, because obviously my completing the form was problematic in that the provided/temporary number/MSISDN of the Lyca SIM had been replaced since the partial port/split service.  I tried completing the Lyca port form anyway but, of course, error "P_MSISDN and MSISDN should not be same" was returned from their "Mobile num you want to keep" and "New Number" form fields.

 

I continued to try and get Lyca to seemingly actually do something in terms of an actual resolution i.e. liaise with O2's porting team.  On November 21, an email from someone at Lyca stated: "We tried to refreshed the network of your Lycamobile number.  Kindly restart the phone once your read this e-mail."  Restarted both devices containing O2 and Lyca SIMs, however there was still split service.

 

On December 3, decided again to request a PAC from both SIMs.  This time, it was the other way round, in that O2 returned: "There's been an issue processing your request....", and Lyca returned a PAC.  At this stage, I wondered if their refreshing something on Nov. 21 was as a result of my then being able to get a PAC.

 

Now that I had a LYC****** PAC, it had me wondering if that a potential fix to the split service might be to port back to O2 from Lyca.  I had a spare O2 SIM, and decided to submit a porting request to O2 in the morning of Thursday, December 21...... I must say that I don't like how O2 don't even acknowledge a request with a SM, email, or reference on form submission page, yet Lyca at least do do that, as they actually send their SIMs using Tracked 24 with thick glossy envelopes, and high GSM paper...kind of bizarrely, if you know what I mean...

 

Half expected something to happen on the following working day (Dec. 22), but nothing appeared to change.

 

Having had quite a bit of experience with porting, I find that they *usually* complete around midday.  Growing even more frustrated with things, and having previously read elsewhere that writing a [negative] Trustpilot review can perhaps sometimes sort of spur an organisation into action, I decided to do this in the evening of Dec. 22.  I would provide a direct link to it if that was possible, judging by how Trustpilot's functions... https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/www.lycamobile.co.uk ... entitled "Porting Issue Since October 23!" ... Maybe page four or five...

 

Based on responses to these TP reviews from someone at Lyca, I anticipated their standard reply, and pre-wrote an email to go to trustpilotreview@lycamobile.com.

 

On Dec. 23, two calls from that 020 number [I mentioned minutes ago in this post] arrived, routed to the O2 SIM; mid-afternoon and, strangely, 21:38.  The one in the evening only rang for a second or so, whereas the one in the afternoon rang for long enough so that whoever was on the other end would have probably heard: "Welcome to the O2 voicemail...." where they would have expected a Lyca voicemail system to answer.

 

On December 26, another call from the 020 number arrived at midday.  An hour or two later, I tested calling my number from a non-Lyca number, to see how many seconds/rings before the O2 voicemail answers, to then learn whether or not it was likely that the caller heard a voicemail answer.  Unexpectedly, my test call was routed to the Lyca SIM.  Tested with messages from non-Lyca numbers and they, too, were being routed to the Lyca SIM.  Began to believe that the problem had been resolved, particularly when I noticed service drop from the O2 SIM some time later, as what should have happened all the way back on October 23.

 

However, maybe around 12 hours later, after midnight on December 27, I noticed that the Lyca SIM had a complete loss of service.  "Emergency calls only".  SIM not provisioned.  Disabling "Automatically select network" in 'Mobile network' settings immediately, without any scanning, returns "No networks found".  "You've dialled an incorrect number.  Please check the number and try again," is heard.  The O2 SIM, the one prior to October 23 (the porting-in date), has no service either, as it had finally dropped from O2's network anyway.

 

My number is a business number that I also use for banking 2FA etc...but it is presently out of service/unreachable.  This is an absolute nightmare.  The length of time that this post has taken to type is painstaking.  I am really at a loose end.

 

Emailed Lyca on Dec. 27....their response was: "I’m sorry to know that your number (44**********) was ported out of Lycamobile.  Also, I got confirmation that the issue was resolved yesterday; you might consider staying with us.  Once again, I apologize for any inconvenience caused, and we hope to regain your trust in the future."

 

Okay, so I wondered if my port back to O2 request (Dec 21) had maybe caused a problem.  As I stated at the beginning of this thread, I contacted O2 CS (0344 809 0202) in the evening of Dec 27.  Long two-hour+ conversation with someone named Andre from Durban, S. Africa..... Ran through the various timeline of events, mentioned the port request submitted on Dec 21, that I had expected to have completed on Dec 22 (the request was submitted at 0530 in the morning).  I think Andre and perhaps whoever he put me on hold to speak with (technical people, apparently) may have not known exactly what the best course of action was.  He mentioned cancelling the port request (that he said did not complete because of the holiday period), even though I had expected something to have happened on that following working day/non-Bank Holiday (Dec22).  After he spoke with the people about that port request that I made, it seemed that the best course of action would be to not cancel it, so as to potentially not cause further problems.  He mentioned 24 hours and that he would call me today (Dec 28) but he didn't.

 

As of some time yesterday (Dec 28), I now find that that spare O2 SIM [that I used to see about attempting to port my number back to], when dialling its number, also gives, "You've dialled an incorrect number.  Please check the number and try again."

 

Whilst I am not fully aware of precisely what happens during number porting, I think there are some 'files' that are transferred between operators.  I wonder if some files are missing or something.

 

As stated, I do not know where or who the problem lies with.  I am hoping that the likes of @O2Lisa might be able to look into this for me.

 

I am desperate to get my number of 15 or 16 years back.

 

For a resolution, the way I see it are for the porting teams of O2 and Lyca to liaise with one another.

 

Thanking you in advance.

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Bambino
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@Zzz2 The online advisors have been withdrawn from the community by O2 and are no longer available to contact. You can only persevere with customer service or try to reach O2 via social media:
Facebook (https://o2uk.co/O2CFB), Twitter (now X) (https://o2uk.co/O2CTW), or Instagram (https://o2uk.co/O2CIG)

You can also lodge a formal complaint, but the average wait time for a response is 8 weeks, so we're told:

How to Complain | Help | O2

I DO NOT WORK FOR O2



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Oxonian
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@Zzz2 

 

Lyca Mobile UK were hacked in early October and apparently porting to or from Lyca has been fraught with difficulties since then :-

 

Lyca Mobile UK Users Report Connectivity and Support Woes UPDATE2 - ISPreview UK

https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2023/10/lyca-mobile-uk-customers-report-connectivity-woes-sinc...

 

Lyca Mobile UK Confirm Cyber Attack Responsible for Disruption - ISPreview UK

https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2023/10/lyca-mobile-uk-confirm-cyber-attack-responsible-for-di...

 

Lyca Mobile UK Confirm Personal Data Breached by Hackers - ISPreview UK

https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2023/10/lyca-mobile-uk-confirm-personal-data-breached-by-hacke...

 

As you tried to leave Lyca in mid-October, your issues are almost certainly routed in this cyber-attack. 

 


@Zzz2 wrote:

 

Whilst I am not fully aware of precisely what happens during number porting, I think there are some 'files' that are transferred between operators.  I wonder if some files are missing or something.


Broadly speaking that is the case and my take on it is that O2 have probably experienced issues securing what they need from Lyca.

 

My personal view is that you should persevere with O2's Customer Service team, maybe taking the social media route as suggested by @Bambino. I would not be inclined to complain, as that will merely introduce more delay into the process. 

 

Please keep us updated on developments. 

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Zzz2
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@Bambino @Oxonian

 

Thank you for your responses.

 

I wanted to reply to this topic (rather than hit reply to a user's message) and quote @Oxonian using the BBCode for quoting, but it wasn't working how I expected, so had to tap reply to Oxonian and then remove some text and faff with the phone...it took a while, but I think this'll have to do.  Tapping the quotation marks when "replying to the topic" basically pasted the OP text...

 

Earlier today, I received an email from Naveen at Lyca, in response to an email that I sent to some of their mailboxes on Thursday (complaints@lycamobile.co.uk, cs@lycamobile.com.uk and trustpilotreview@lycatel.com):

 

"As per your request I will initiate the Port-in roll back of your number (***********), once the issue is resolved, I will update you at the earliest. Once again, I apologize for any inconvenience caused, and we appreciate your patience as we work to rectify the situation."

 

Whilst I did not specifically request a "Port-in roll back", I can only be hopeful that this is going to resolve the problem.  I simply desperately need my number back.

 

Several years ago, I used to have both FB & X accounts, until I decided to close them.  I'm not sure whether I'm going to recreate anything to contact O2.  Maybe.  I am aware that SM can have its [positive] uses.

 

Yesterday, I decided to send an email to complaintreviewservice@o2.com, and included the link to this thread.

 

I was aware of the cyber-attack at the end of September/early October, having read about it on ISP Review.

 


@Oxonian wrote:

 

As you tried to leave Lyca in mid-October, your issues are almost certainly routed in this cyber-attack.

I know that the timeline of events are a little complicated, but the porting in October was to go from O2 to Lyca.  Split service from Oct 23 to Dec 26.

 

With my thoughts in mid-December, I wondered if using a spare O2 SIM that I had and submitting the Lyca-issued PAC (at the beginning of December) to O2 may somehow fix the split service issue that occurred on Oct 23.  Lyca, as the Gaining Provider, probably should have resolved the issue anyway (their responsibility), but they do seem to be quite incompetent.

 

I completed and submitted the O2 porting form on Dec 21, wondering what may happen, if anything, on Dec 22.  Nothing appeared to happen, then decided to write the Trustpilot review later that Friday.  Naveen from Lyca responded on Sat, Dec 23.  More calls from that 020 (Lyca number) on 23 and Boxing Day.  At around midday on the Boxing Day, I decided to test call my number from a non-Lyca number, for me to hear how many rings/seconds it takes until "Welcome to the O2 voicemail...," is heard, so that I could adjudge whether whoever was on the other end of the phone from Lyca was likely to have heard the default O2 voicemail greeting.  Lo and behold, the test call routed to the Lyca SIM.  Tested with msgs from non-Lyca numbers and they, too, were routing to the correct SIM.  Subsequently, service dropped from the O2 SIM.  All of this was supposed to have happened on Oct 23.

 

However, things went from seemingly resolved to much worse than the split service issue from Oct 23 to Dec 26, because around 12 hours after (in the early hours of Dec 27) things seemed to be working properly, service dropped completely from the Lyca SIM.  "You've dialled an incorrect number.  Please check the number and try again," is still being heard.

 

Based on one of Naveen's emailed responses on Dec 27 ("I’m sorry to know that your number (44**********) was ported out of Lycamobile.......," I wondered if his stating that was due to the O2 porting form that I submitted on Dec 21, in what was my thinking that the split service issue may then somehow be fixed.  Perhaps I regret doing that now, as maybe that caused a further issue or something.

 

Interestingly, calls to the O2 number assigned to that spare O2 SIM also give, "You've dialled an incorrect number".

 

Hopefully, some "Port-in roll back" as Naveen at Lyca mentioned earlier today is going to work.

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Oxonian
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@Zzz2 

I hope that works for you ; please keep us updated on developments. 

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Zzz2
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Just briefly, I think it may be worthwhile noting the following:-

 

- The Lyca SIM's service (inbound and outbound) is completely down, as of what appeared to be the beginning of Dec 27.

 

- The O2 SIM's service (inbound) is down, and sending "Number" to 2020 no longer returns anything, as of what probably occurred on Dec 27, possibly around the same time as the Lyca SIM suffered a complete loss of service.  Previously, sending "Number" to 2020 returned the number that was assigned to that SIM.

 

However, this SIM does have signal/bars.  The SIM is installed in a 'dumb-phone' - Samsung E2121B.  Attempted calls return a long continuous tone, but calls to two of O2's service numbers (4444 for topping-up & 4445 for CS) connect through.

 

To reiterate, attempted calls to both the number that arrived with the spare O2 SIM and my actual number are still returning, "You've dialled an incorrect number..."

 

I am hopeful for some resolution on Tuesday, and I will continue to provide updates.

 

Happy new year to everyone.

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Oxonian
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And a Happy New Year to you @Zzz2 ; hopefully your issues will be resolved promptly this coming week. 

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Zzz2
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OK... so, I discovered something quite interesting today...

 

On NYE, I think I mentioned that "You've dialled an incorrect number..." is heard when inbound calls are made to both my number and the number that came assigned to the spare O2 SIM [that I had used just before Christmas in an attempt to port my number back to O2 in a bid to see if that somehow resolved the O2/Lyca split service issue].  Dialling two of O2's service numbers (4444 & 4445) established a connection.  On Dec. 27, texting "Number" to 2020 was no longer returning any replied message from O2.

 

A little earlier today, I decided to call 4445 to speak with someone from customer services and ask them to tell me the number that I am calling from.  The agent asked me for the SIM serial number.  O2 seem to use 13-digit SSNs that don't begin with the usual 89448.  Read the SSN to the agent, and they then read my number back.  So, the port (maybe Dec 27) must have partly replaced the original number that was assigned to the spare O2 SIM that I used.  I was then about to attempt to try and explain the story of what has gone on since October 23, but the call disconnected.  Maybe that was a good thing!  Obviously, even if that agent then tried to call me back on the number that was read back to me, they'd likely hear "You've dialled an incorrect number...".

 

The text below was written yesterday.

 

/START

No change (neither yesterday (Jan 2) nor today).

 

I have communicated several or more exchanged messages with Naveen at Lyca via trustpilotreview@lycatel.com, since writing the Trustpilot review on Dec. 22.

 

Wrote an email today (yesterday) asking, amongst other written words, whether the "Port-in roll back" was initiated, as per Naveen's message on Dec. 30.

 

Received this response:

 

"Please accept our apologies for the delay involved and any inconvenience caused.

 

This issue has already been escalated, and I’m requesting that you kindly buy a new empty SIM card from the retailer shop and help us with the SIM card number. So that I can transfer your number to Lycamobile."

 

Wrote back, asking why I have to "buy" a new empty SIM.  Again, queried the "escalation" and "Port-in roll back".

 

Naveen:

"Yes, I already escalated to get details for the rollback. If I resend the SIM from my end, it will take at least 3 business working days to reach you. If it is okay, kindly help me with your complete address details and an alternate number to resend the SIM card."

 

Replied, asking why they can't look at what the problem with <19-digit SSN> is, and restore it back to the Lyca network.  Whilst it obviously isn't beyond all realms of possibility, I doubt that the SIM has developed a physical fault.

 

I will persevere.  I don't know whether I'm going to look at contacting O2's CS again.  That call with someone based overseas on Dec. 27 lasted for 2h38m.

 

I have spent a ridiculous amount of time on this.

 

To go from split service with O2 and Lyca from Oct. 23 - Dec. 26, to seemingly resolved (no more split service and service dropping from the ported-out O2 SIM) for around 12 hours (~midday on Boxing Day to ~00:00-02:00 at the beginning of the 27th), to a loss of service of the Lyca SIM with, "You've dialled an incorrect number...," being heard is a little odd.

 

While I think the problem probably lies with Lyca, I do wonder if my submitting that porting-in form to O2 at the beginning of Dec. 21, in my efforts to try and find a resolution, may have caused a problem.  Either that, or Lyca, perhaps maliciously, simply disabled the SIM.  A little cynical, though my mind isn't closed.  What gets me is the timing of the Lyca loss of service in the early hours of Dec. 27, those ~12 hours after the Lyca/O2 split service seemed to have been resolved.  I find that number ports usually happen at around midday, and the number has not been ported to the spare O2 SIM that I used.

 

I'd obviously prefer to avoid the added hassle, but I may have to look more into the ADR schemes.  Ofcom state that Lycatel belong to the Communications Ombudsman, whereas Lyca their selves state that they are covered by the CISAS (Communications & Internet Services Adjudication Scheme).

/END

 

So, it seems that the port-in request that was submitted to O2 on Dec 21 didn't complete properly either, similarly how the October 23 port from O2 to Lyca didn't complete properly either, with the then split service issue.

 

Replied to Lyca... Asked what the procedure is going to be i.e. whether a rollback is definitely going to work... without any PACs (after the call to the O2 CS earlier today, I also tried to request a PAC from O2 to see if that returned any message - as with Number to 2020, no response to the PAC request either) involved being provided to a gaining provider.....whether the SIM is going to arrive with my number (unlikely)...

 

I think I saw a "Technical" sub-forum.  Maybe I should also create a thread in there....

 

I'm exhausted.

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Oxonian
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@Zzz2 

We don't want a second thread on this saga ; with one we keep all of the posts together on this thread. 

Please let us know whether the rollback is successful ?  

 

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Zzz2
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Update

Good news.  I have my number back!

 

Since writing the Trustpilot review on Dec 22 (the day after I submitted a port request to O2 in a bid to resolve the eight/nine week long split service myself), a lot or all of my communication with Lycamobile has been with Naveen, Trustpilot reviewer.

 

With messages to 2020 ("Number") & 65075 ("PAC") not returning anything whatsoever from the O2 SIM, and with calls to both my number and the number of the spare O2 SIM that I used still returning, "You've dialled an incorrect number...," I discovered that calls to two of O2's service numbers (4444/4445) connected.  On Jan 3, decided to dial 4445 for CS and see if an agent could tell me the number I was calling from.  They said my number, before the call disconnected for whatever reason.  Super interesting...... I suspected that the port request that I submitted to O2 on Dec 21 may have partially completed or got stuck, or something.

 

So, ultimately, I think Lyca were able to obtain a PAC from O2 some days ago.  Meanwhile, Lyca posted a SIM to me (I guess a SIM of any carrier or operator potentially could've been used).  Activated it once it was received, sent a mail to Naveen with its SSN, MSISDN, & PUK.  They, Lyca, on my behalf, submitted a port-in to request to move my number back to Lyca.  Naveen called me yesterday at ~15:30 and mentioned two days.  Queried that, seeing how Naveen was presumably going to be submitting the request before 5PM.

 

Today, all seems how it should be.  No split service, either.  O2's service has dropped.

 

Happy now!

 

Thank you to the people who have provided some input.

 

I think I ought to continue with and escalate my displeasure about Lyca, though.  If they'd have simply resolved the split service issue in the first instances when it occurred on October 23, then probably none of what followed would've happened.  Essentially, the Trustpilot review is seemingly what spurred them into action...tut.

 

Despite all issues seemingly now being resolved, I may still proceed with an ADR, although there is conflicting information as to whether Lycatel belong to the Communications Ombudsman or the CISAS.  Ofcom state the former, whereas Lyca themselves state the CISAS.

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