Comcast Changes Your Telephone Number, Neglects To Inform You

Welcome, Comcast, to Houston, TX, where you’ve already managed to irritate your brand new customers. Laura Gill is perhaps the most irritated of them all.

Comcast changed her phone number with out her permission and didn’t bother to tell her.

“What got to me more than anything else they changed my phone number and they don’t even let me know. I had no clue my phone number was changed and I had that number for seven years,” Lisa told KHOU.

“I want my phone number back — bottom line.”

Thanks to some calls from reporters, she got her wish. Isn’t bad PR neat?

Some Comcast customers not happy
(Photo:Spidra Webster)


Edit Your Comment

  1. B says:

    To be fair, Comcast tried to call her, but they were using her old phone number.

  2. pinkbunnyslippers says:

    @B: LOL

  3. shiny says:

    I had a similar issue with my old wireless carrier. I was an employee of a global telecommunications company with an employee discount for their small wireless division. I quickly took them up on their offer which was quite competitive at the time.

    Many of us were plagued by billing issues — our discount simply wasn’t coming through as promised. And we all had one point of contact with the company who wouldn’t return our calls and email correspondence. (Fortunately, however, we could look her up and determine who her supervisor was.)

    One day I discovered my phone wasn’t letting me make outbound calls. I tried calling it and received a recording that my number wasn’t in service. After a good time waiting on hold for someone to determine what was going on, I was told that my phone number had been canceled and submitted back into the “pool.” And there was no way of me retrieving it or selecting it from the pool — aside from calling in once a day and randomly drawing three phone numbers from the pool.

    They did, however, offer me another phone number. And a measly fifty bucks.

    I guess the moral of the story is advice that I hope everyone reading this can follow:

    Stay away from Worldcom Wireless. :)

  4. jwarner132 says:

    The article says:

    “Comcast says that for a majority of its 750,000 customers the switchover has been successful.

    About one percent have had problems, according to the company.”

    1% of 750,000 is 7,500. That’s a lot of pissed off customers.

  5. bohemian says:

    I have had quite a few cable/telcom carriers. We moved a bunch over the last few years.

    Of all the ones we have had Comcast sucked heads and shoulders above the rest. The number of things that were screwed up when we started and then on an ongoing basis were many. Their customer service was horrible, horrible compared to the other horrible service from our other cable and phone providers.

    If we move again and Comcast is our only option I think we will actually break down and get a dish.

  6. Buran says:

    A lot of people say Comcast sucks but I’m still waiting for Charter to restore CBS HD to me, which they have not done despite repeated complaints.

  7. Sir Winston Thriller says:

    We just switched from Verizon to Comcast for phone service this past Monday. There were some problems–a 1pm-3pm service window becams “show up at 7 and finish at 8:30”. Then the cable box needed to be requthorized twice from their end.

    All in all, though, it wasn’t as bad as I’d feared. The voice quality is as good at Verizon’s.

    We’ve had the following cable companies in our lives so far: Suburban Cablevision, Viacom, ATT, Adelphia, and Comcast. ATT (in rural California) was the best for service and selection. Adelphia was the absolute worst. Comcast isn’t that bad (so far) but it isn’t that great. You don’t have a lot of confidence in a company when the service tech is on hold with his own company for 45 minutes in the middle of his service call.

  8. create says:

    this is honestly not comcast’s fault, if a number cannot be ported over (99% of the time because the stupid customer called the previous provider and canceled prior to port), its common practice to assign a native number if nothing else but as a temporary until the old number can be brought over

  9. MoogleLally says:

    Houston Comcast customer here.

    “1% of 750,000 is 7,500. That’s a lot of pissed off customers.”

    Yeah! And we’ve been pretty vocal about it once the internet and phones were working again.

    My personal downtime: internet – 3 days
    phone – week and a half

    And they didn’t know they’d even turned off our phone! When the tech guy came over, he was on hold with support for over a half hour. Sheesh. Granted, they did tell me they would refund my bill for the downtime… ;_; but I missed birthday phone calls. can they give that back? (seriously, just kidding there.)

  10. Heyref says:

    @create: She didn’t drop anything, Comcast took over her old carrier.

  11. Murph1908 says:

    I would like to nominate B as poster of the week. He has made me laugh out loud twice in the past couple of days.

  12. 7livesleft says:

    Bill: So, what’s you phone number?
    Mary: I don’t know, let me call Comcast

  13. hustler says:

    Good thing you don’t really have a choice for communications…then they’d have to provide a decent product to keep your business.

  14. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    And Comcast wonders, when I’m on the phone with them trying to straighten out my cable card bill (either the bill is right or the cards work, but not both), why they can’t talk me into getting the Comcast phone!!
    Well, my Verizon phone bill is accurate, and my phone works about 99.9999% of the time. When I can say that about my cable internet and TV, talk to me about my phone.

    Oh, and the obligatory Consumerist Poster comment: “She should have known better than to expect customer service.” :)

  15. Bix says:


    That would be funnier if 511 didn’t exist.

  16. dragonpup says:

    @create: What Create says is true. I work for day of install phone provisioning for Comcast and sometimes the old carrier simply won’t release the number to us. Vonage is a particulary bad offender in this department(they also make us wait 2 weeks before we can even do the install!).

    The standard procedure is to fail the job and reschedule, or if the old carrier already cut service we can sometimes give the customer a native number from our pool.

  17. aikoto says:

    Verizon did this to me. When we moved to a new state, we had our phone service lined up ahead of time, but when we showed up, they wouldn’t give us the phone number. They gave us a temporary number (forgetting to tell us it was temporary) and then we had to fight them again after about a week.

    I have never met a telco that was even half-way competent.

  18. says:

    @create and @dragonpup: Yes, it’s true that there may be cases where a number can’t be ported — but your customer should still be informed of what their phone number is.

  19. create says:

    yes, we typically do not assign a number without notification, but i cannot speak to other companies practices, and in the event the customer could find themselves without a dial tone and the ability to call 911, i could see where at least a temporary number would be better than nothing until the original number can be retrieved

  20. nobodygrrl says:

    Verizon did the same thing to me, too! I ended up switching to MCI about a year later. MCI was worse, though. First, I forgot to put a decimal in my online bill pay amount, so I paid $7000 instead of $70. They wanted to just credit my account and, when I refused, told me that it would take 8-12 weeks for them to cut me a refund check. Luckily, my superior lawyering skills got me a refund in about 10 days, which still sucked because I was stuck with overdraft fees. The mail is notoriously slow where I live (my Congressman even opened an investigation into the problem), so my bills were coming 2-3 weeks late. I ended up paying a couple of MCI bills about a week late. But in the meantime, they shut off my phone — yes, after only a week — and didn’t bother to notify me. So I called from my cell phone to ask what the deal was, and they told me that they left me voice mails and sent a letter right afterwards. Yeah, except YOU CUT OFF MY VOICE MAIL, so how was I supposed to get it? I said “fine, I want to terminate my service. Do NOT send me to the retention department.” After sending me to retention departments in Russia, Pakistan, and somewhere in South America, I finally escaped from MCI’s clutches and am strictly cell phone. Saves me about $75 a month.