Monday, July 27, 2009

Etisalat, Blackberry, and the whole fiasco...

The news over the past 10 days has been about Etisalat's Blackberry patch fiasco that has drained the batteries of many BB users. And to add insult to injury, it turns out that the patch is not really a "sofware update patch", as originally claimed by was, in fact, a spyware patch that gave Etisalat access to BB users' email and messenger information (which should have technically been secure).

Now, the fact that Etisalat is trying to "spy" on its users is disturbing to begin with, but what's even more disturbing is Etisalat's ridiculous response to the whole fiasco. If ever there was a PR case study made out of this, it would be to showcase how NOT to handle a crisis situation.

Newspapers, the blogosphere, Twitter, word of mouth...EVERYONE was talking about this, but how did Etisalat choose to respond? By avoiding the situation. By not releasing a statement until a few days later, downplaying the story, saying only "300 customers were affected".

In an era where dialog with the consumer, transparency and honesty are key in ensuring a brand's credibility, Etisalat has got it all wrong...really!

I was not affected by this because just a week before the patch was released, I switched my BB service to Du...Yep...Du...And in all honesty, I am very happy with their service so far.

1) The coverage is good (there was only 1 location where I had Etisalat coverage but no Du coverage at all).
2) They are MUCH cheaper than Etisalat...even their international calling rates are better.
3) Turns out that changing my number to a Du number is not so complicated after all...All it took is one email and a few messages to advise my contacts that my number has changed. I still have my Etisalat number for a couple of months, and then I plan on completely discontinuing it.

I do hope Du benefits from the whole Etisalat mess. Not because I love Du (refer to some of my previous posts), but because any company that acts in such a moronic manner NEEDS to suffer some consequences!


Seabee said...

We have so many examples which should be case studies in how not to treat customers, how not to handle PR. The ID card, Atlantis' whale shark, RTA, Etisalat, the list never stops.

rana said...

What's also surprising is the TRA's silence in the matter. Aren't they the "Regulatory" body?

Naseem said...

I also use DU for my Blackberry services and the costs are much better... my only issue in coverage is when I am driving and talking the signal tend to go on and off very often...

I feel sorry for Itisalat and the way they handled this issue...

Anonymous said...

etisalat offer unlimited international but du has fair usage policy for 1 gb only per month .

SatichDash said...

A good suggestion is well for the listeners ,they always like to go in your way and say truth and never say lie to other persons for which they face lake of problems.
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Dubai Properties said...

It's all too bad to know about problems of Blackberry users in UAE and all such news and posts will put a bad name to UAE. I think that UAE authorities must bother about this concern as such problems faced by foreigner BB user will negatively affect UAE tourist industry.

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