My Broken Mobile – Getting a PAC code


Alright, so here’s the latest installment in my mobile saga.  As I last  wrote, I recently bought myself an iPhone to replace my broken Pay-As-160px-orange_logoYou-Go phone on the Orange network.

Well, for the last week I’ve been trying to cancel that phone and move my number to the iPhone on the O2 network.  I’ve called several times now, and each time I’ve been given the run-around.  And it’s really starting to piss me off!!!

You see, in or100px-o2_logosvgder to move your number to another provider, you’re required to get a PAC code from your current one.  ‘A PAC (Porting Authorisation Code) is a unique identifier which mobile and fixed-line telephone network providers (in the UK and various other countries) issue to a customer so they can port their number to another network.’ (Yes, that is copied from Wikipedia … figured if I was going to put info on here, it might as well be the correct info…)ofcom-logo

Now, again as per our friend Wikipedia, here are the rules with issuing PAC codes, as per Ofcom (independent regulator and competition authority for the communication industries in the United Kingdom) :

  1. Your current Service Provider must give you a Porting Authorisation Code (PAC) or a reason why it cannot be issued within 2 working days of your request. You can obtain your PAC by calling the customer service group of your current network. Usually your network operator will be able to provide your PAC over the phone and will then follow this up in writing.
  2. Your PAC is valid for a period of 30 calendar days and your request must be submitted to your new Service Provider within that time.
  3. Your number can then be transferred anytime between 2 and 32 calendar days from the date your PAC is issued.

Now, apparently Orange has changed the rules about issuing PAC codes to their customers who want to move their number to another provider:

As of 2006 Orange have changed their policy on Porting Authorisation Codes such that they will no longer issue them over the phone. If you request a PAC from Orange they will send it out via a letter, through Post which can take 5 to 7 working days excluding the bank holidays. If customer doesn’t receive the PAC within that period then Orange Sends PAC through a Text Message. Orange claims that this is an OFCOM requirement and Subject to Orange Policies. Caution – if you decide not to use your PAC within 30 days, then your contract will not terminate.

According to that same Wikipedia page, most of the other UK providers don’t make their customer’s jump through hoops in order to move their telephone number over.  Orange seems to be the only ones trying to make it difficult.

Now, technically it has been 5 business days since I initially requested the PAC from Orange, which would mean they are in violation of the Ofcom rule of having the PAC issued within 2 working days.

The first time I called for it, I was told I’d have to wait for a minimum of 24 hours until my ‘account was registered’, which didn’t make any sense to me since I’d been using my phone for over 4 months.  How could it not be registered?

And then, most recently, when I called this afternoon, I was transferred twice, and then placed on hold for well over 40 minutes, only to be told the department I needed to speak to was ‘too busy’, and that someone would call me back within 24 hours … solely to verify my name and address.  (Note: After reading the Wikipedia site, this now makes more sense to me … doesn’t mean I like it though)

To be honest, I’m wondering if it’s even worth the hassle.  I’ve been given a temporary number with O2 (no clue what it is…), so maybe I’ll just have to say screw Orange and forget about moving my number.

And this after I FINALLY memorized my current number … only took me 4 1/2 months.

I’ll keep ya posted.  😉

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