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Major car tracking company in hot water in South Africa

Prominent car tracking company Cartrack debited fees from approximately 500 of its South African clients twice over the Easter weekend as a result of an issue with its billing system.

In a Sunday Times report, consumer journalist Wendy Knowler brought to light the double debiting after several of Cartrack’s affected clients resorted to complaining about their problem online when the company was unhelpful in resolving the matter.

One Cartrack client told Knowler that he was debited his R539 tracking fee on March 26, and another R539 two days later for the same reason.

When he called Cartrack himself he was allegedly told that because the debit orders were both for the same amount, the “system” does not allow a refund and the company can only reallocate the second payment as credit for the next month.

Other customers were concerned that they may not have enough funds in their accounts to cover their remaining debit orders as a result of Cartrack’s system malfunction, and that they had to jump through several hoops to be promised a refund.

An isolated incident

Following the public complaints from Cartrack customers, Knowler contacted the company requesting more information regarding the reason behind the double-billing incident.

In response, Cartrack stated that “fewer than 500 customers” were affected and that the deductions were a result of an “unfortunate billing issue due to the disruption caused by the long weekend”.

“We have contacted the affected customers and, in accordance with our procedure for an isolated occurrence such as this, we have offered them the choice between receiving a refund or having the amount credited towards their next month’s subscription,” it said.

The organisation admitted that early complaints about this issue were not handled properly as its employees were unaware of the correct procedures to follow in this specific scenario.

Additionally, Cartrack said it will only be able to provide a comprehensive response surrounding the incident and its affected customers this week.

“Currently we are dealing with all affected customers while making sure our staff is adequately trained to deal with this isolated issue,” it told Knowler.



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