Some of the most vulnerable people have been left without phone and internet services after a telecommunications company that specialises in the over 55s went into administration.
OneTelecom, the company name for ONEseniors, was one of three companies that went into administration following a court battle on Friday.
Distressed relatives have raised concerns about their elderly family members signed on with ONEseniors who have had their services disconnected without warning and who have not received any information about when they will be back online.
On an update posted on ONEseniors Facebook page on Saturday evening, the company announced it had appointed administrators due to a ''supplier not being able to fulfil their obligations to supply services to ONESeniors”.
“It is deeply regretful that this has occurred to our members and ONEseniors business, who have supplied the best of services and prices for those over 55,” the message said. “We are confident that the appointment will result in the best outcome for all.''
Several comments on the post remarked on the irony that elderly customers who relied on ONEseniors for their internet would not be able to see the message and that they had been unable to speak to operators that day.
The disconnections have been acutely felt by people based interstate or overseas whose elderly relatives have relied on ONEseniors to keep in touch.
Queensland-based Marisa Lewis said her 86-year-old father called her saying his ONEseniors-provided internet was not working, only for her to discover on the company’s Facebook page that other customers were experiencing difficulties.
She tried to call him late Saturday, but by then his landline had also been cut off and his mobile phone was not taking calls. Panicking, she asked another family member based in Victoria to check on him.
“I am mad as hell for him,” Ms Lewis said. She said her father needed to be in constant contact with her sister and that his medical alerts were also connected to his landline phone.
“There must be so many vulnerable seniors out there who are without any communication today and if they have no family to check on them they may not even know,” she said.
OneTelecom was one of three companies confirmed to have gone into administration along with iBoss International and AsiaPac Communications.
Both OneTelecom and iBoss were brands of telecommunications wholesaler ispONE which went into administration in August last year following court cases with Telstra and Kogan Mobile.
ispONE was then acquired by Conec2, of which AsiaPac is a subsidiary.
Fairfax Media has also been contacted by people experiencing problems with Conec2 services.
ONEseniors and Conec2 could not be contacted.