back to article Fasthosts customers still frozen out of websites

Fasthosts has promised it will bring in more support staff to deal with the volume of calls it is still receiving following its poorly-handled password reset on Friday. Many customers haven't received the replacement passwords that the Gloucester webhost said it had sent in the post. We asked for an update on the debacle, and …


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  1. Francis Fish


    Is what we're calling them at the moment

  2. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  3. Haku


    Yesterday I received the password to one of two Farcehosts accounts I have, luckily it's the one I want to cancel before it's re-billed at the end of the month, but logging into thier (particularly pants) control panel

    - after typing out the password several times because I thought capitol "i" was a lower case "L" and their 'scrambled letter' anti-bot password is not much better either because how can you tell the difference between x and X? or o and O?

    anyway after I eventually successfully logged in I spent a further 15 minutes trying to navigate the damn interface trying to find the cancel account option, which doesn't seem to be there, they don't want me to leave? which means I'm probably going to have to waste even more fricken time (and also money) on the phone to these prats

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Forcing passwords changes for people to stupid, shortsighted and/or selfish to do it themselves after a widely publicised major break-in seems perfectly reasonable to me. Your laziness is potentially affecting my business.

    Why the hell Fasthosts was storing plain text passwords in the first place is another question.

  5. EvilFairy


    "can be provided with their new passwords over the phone"

    doesn't that sound like they're storing unencrypted passwords still?

    please please tell me that they're generating new ones over the phone and not storing them unencrypted again

  6. Geoff Johnson


    They say they're re-setting the e-mail passwords soon if you don't manually change it first.

    They'll probably e-mail out the new ones :)

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Get Ready!

    On the 13th December they are resetting the passwords on all the email accounts which have not been changed since 10th October.

    So these people will lose their email too!

  8. mark carlisle
    Thumb Down

    lost customer 'losthosts'

    As soon as I receive my passwords(if ever) I will be taking my business eslewhere.

    This is an absolute joke. I've been locked out of my control panel for well over a week now. They had the cheek to sent another email yesterday 'announcing' the forced change of passwords for webmail too.

    I don't have the time to sit on hold, trying to get through to have my details 'verified'

    How will they even know it really is me in the event the hacker has all the necessary details?

    exasparated...don't come close

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My Fasthosts saga

    I have two hosting accounts with Fasthosts, using a total of 3 MySQL databases. When I got the password change advisory letter in October, I changed my control panel and FTP passwords. The SQL passwords are not quite as simple a matter - if you change those, you have to go inside the applications that are utilising the databases, and change the details which connect the application to the database - not always a simple matter. So I decided I'd take the chance and leave those, and the e-mail passwords, until a later date when I had some time to spare. OK I went against the advice there, but that was my choice.

    Last Thursday evening I had reports from my users that they could not get in. When they tried to log into forums etc, they were faced with SQL 'cannot connect' errors. I got the e-mail from Fasthosts saying that all my passwords had been changed blah blah and they'd be sent in the mail to me. I e-mailed Fasthosts support on Friday morning asking for my new password details to be e-mailed to me by return. Obviously, all I needed was the control panel password then I could go in and change all the other passwords and get my sites back up and running again. That e-mail was auto-acknowledged by Fasthosts, but has never been responded to.

    I happened to notice in one of the comments on this forum that, if you had changed your passwords when the original advisory was issued, that password would still be valid. That enabled me to log in and change the SQL passwords so that I could access the databases again. Then all I had to do was find out how to change the password details in each affected application and all would be well. This unfortunately is not as easy as it sounds, and I wasn't able to get my second site up and running until Friday evening.

    If I had waited for help from Fasthosts, my sites would still be down now, almost a full week later, and still no letter has arrived in the post. They left me high and dry. Needless to say I'm moving my accounts, and am already getting on famously with my new hosts, Heart Internet, and setting up my new sites. The Register has been invaluable through all of this, without it none of us would have had a clue what was going on.

  10. Carl Garner
    Thumb Down

    Good riddens

    I used to have an account with their "StreamLine" face, but recently ditched it after the growing amounts of spam and diabolical "Control Panel" - you couldn't control anything with that piece of crap

  11. Johnn Fitzgerald
    Thumb Down

    Other Options

    Having suffered as many other Fasthost customers have recently. Does anyone have any better suggestions of where to take my business?

  12. Anonymous Coward


    Quote from main article:

    "Customers who haven't changed all their email passwords will face similar problems when they're also reset on Sunday."

    The 13th is a Thursday in my diary???

  13. Webcrawler2050

    Re: Other Options

    Johnn, yes we moved to and they are top notch, they are a small - medium firm and their support is fantastic.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Fasthosts Passwords

    @AC "Customers who haven't changed all their email passwords will face similar problems when they're also reset on Sunday."

    The 13th is a Thursday in my diary???"

    Yep - it's a Thursday. As stated in the Fasthosts emails. It is El'Reg who made the typo this time. :)

    With my client who is on fasthosts.... when the story initially broke here on El'Reg, I went and changed my FTP and Control Panel passwords. A short time later, I changed half of the email passwords (mine, the boss and financial boss). I left all the staff members email passwords unchanged.

    I got an email last week mentioning the Thursday 13th deadline.... and just five mins ago I got an email telling me exactly which accounts need to be changed, and therefore which accounts would be scrambled next week.

    So things seem logical here.... but only because I followed the story via El'Reg. If it had not of been for El'Reg, I would not of known to go and change my control panel passwords after the initial hack. Didn't even put anything about it on the RSS feed (well, not anything I saw).

    All a bit patchy really... but who else gives decent Hosted Exchange Server support? I don't have time to learn M$ Exchange, but my client needs all the features for his small team.

  15. Nick Franklin
    Thumb Down

    Wednesday and still no letter in the post.

    Yep its Wednesday at 6:30pm and still no letter from Fasthosts, what a joke.

    According to the Fasthost statement above they will be increasing support staff numbers, I rand tonight at 6:15pm and was in queue position 52. Great and on an 0870 number, there is no way I'm hanging on for that long.

    Bye Bye Fasthosts, I'm off.

  16. Morely Dotes

    @ Johnn Fitzgerald

    I offer competitive pricing and personal service; if you're satisfied with hosting in the USA, I'll be glad to talk to you. However, I am *very* picky about who gets to be a customer, and I won't accept more than 100 hosting customers total (I currently have about 10). I will not host FrontPage nor Exchange, either; the system is Linux and will remain Linux.

    If that interests you, you can reach me via under username morelydotes.

    And if El Reg (understandably) prefers not to post this, I imagine Johnn Fitzgerald would appreciate having it forwarded.

  17. Stuart Harrison

    Re: Selfishness

    The point is that it wasn't just people who didn't change their passwords who got hit, people with the good sense to do what Fasthosts told them in the first place suffered too.

  18. BoldMan

    Farcehosts have effectivly killed their own business!

    I used to host some sites with them but thank GOD I moved them last year. I've been using DreamHost in California for 2 years now and they are pretty good. Not perfect, they had some power outages end of last year and that caused some issues, but the people who run it seem to actually GIVE a damn and their communications are pretty rapid and effective, even though there is no telephone number to call.

  19. Daniel McDicken
    Dead Vulture

    Fasthost's hell

    In going to the expence of using Royal Mail to notify their customers of new passwords Fasthosts are publicly declaring a Vote of no confidence in the security of their own eMail Servers.

    Further more by not notifying there customers of the security breach and sending out eMail's requesting a password change it has left hundreds of customers potentially at risk if their data has been stolen as the attacker will now be in possession of potentially hundereds of peoples details and their passwords to their computer systems.

  20. andy
    Thumb Up

    Link too follow Changing passwords before Fasthosts do!

    Here is a link too Help People change Email Passwords if they have forgotten their current passwords.

    FREE Password Recovery + FREE Remote Access

  21. Vijay Thakorlal

    "Fast"hosts "support"

    I received an email three days ago stating that I needed to update my billing records since the card I used to pay for the service was about to expire. The email stated:

    "*** You must have a valid credit/debit card on your account at all times in accordance with our Terms of Service. ***

    Please note, any failure to pay for your service on time will result in an administration charge as per your Terms of Service."

    So I went to the "Fast"hosts control panel to login, entered my username and password, hmm....incorrect username/password...that's funny. Fired up password safe and double checked the username + password - it was correct (I updated once I had reset my passwords in October).

    I tried the password reminder feature...sorry this feature is currently unavailable (according to others on this site because the password reminder services used to read the passwords from a cleartext file?).

    I have been calling "Fast"hosts "support" on their 0870 number for the past three days (until I spotted this article and the alternative numbers - thanks!) and always end up at number 50+ in the queue and after an hour I can't seem to get past queue position 44 - my phone bills going to hurt.

    If I end up having to pay a Admin fee for not paying the bill on time I think I'll ask for a refund with interest. In fact I think I'll demand they pay the cost of the calls to their support line.

    I think they should retract the following statement from their website:

    "If you need to contact us, you'll get a quick and accurate answer, any time, day or night.

    * We aim to resolve all queries within 2 hours.

    * Always someone here to answer your call."

    I have been trying day and night. Yeah right, I'd have more of a chance of getting through to the Elvis.

    "The UK's number 1 web host" indeed.

    "Home to more website than any other provider" - not for long judging by the number of people who have been effected.

    I don't know about you guys but I will be changing providers ASAP.

  22. kevin russell

    Move, move, move

    I have been giving FastHosts "one more chance" for the whole of 2007. But this is the Straw that broke the Camels back. Since the whole thing kicked off, I have been hunting for another Host and settled with

    The support guy I conversed with - Carl - told me that it has been a busy weekend for them with a whole raft of new sign ups from [soon-to-be] ex-fasthost resellers.

    I have moved my Linux accounts over to CSNM and the process has gone very smoothly and it is actually cheaper for me. I have 75 Windows accounts too and they have offered to help port them all - for free!

    I wish there was some way of seeing how many reseller customers FastHosts had before the Security breach, and how many they will have in the new year :o)

  23. Mark


    Dont know if they can do what you want, but I have been impressed by heart internet, ticketed support rather than phone, but every support problem I have raised has been responded to in about 10 minutes, by someone who actually seems to know what they are doing.

    Currently moving my e-commerce site to them after a 1&1 support debacle.

  24. Anonymous Coward


    We moved all our business away from Fasthosts after the last big problem, when their facility in Gloucester was flooded and this caused power issues. Thankfully this means we don't have to worry about passwords being forcefully reset and sent via Royal Mail, you'd think after the farce with HMRC sending sensitive information unencrypted in the post, it might make private enterprise less likely to do so ...... evidently not!

    About sixty percent of our business went to Rackspace, we rolled the dice somewhat with the other forty percent and went to a smaller outfit called Bytemark - the dice didn't come up snake eyes, we've been happy with the outcome and would highly recommend them both.

  25. Simon

    More trouble to come

    At first it was a few customers, now over 1 million. Just wait until the email passwords are changed.

  26. David McCarthy

    Thursday & still locked out

    It's Thursday maorning and were still locked out of all our web sites.Nothing has come in the post, and their customer service number is constantly engaged (it sounds very mush as if there's somethinf wrong with the line as there's a loud 'click' before the two-tone sound is heard.

    Sent an email support request in to them on Tuesday at mid-day - we still haven't had a response.

    Up to now, we've been very happy with Fasthosts - but not responding to its customers is the quickest way they will lose our business.

    David McCarthy ... WORD-right & IDEAS-right

  27. Anonymous Coward

    Still waiting...

    Tis Thursday. Still no emailed password. I'm still locked out of updating my websites. And the support number that I have is engaged permanently, and the customer support website at fasthosts - well, you have to login to access it!


    (posted anon for obv reasons)

  28. Webcrawler2050

    Niche Gut

    10:43AM Still no password in the post. Tried to call got to que position 50, sent a support ticket in - nada.

    Pain in the backside

  29. Rikki
    Thumb Up

    When asked about their new security...

    ...they pointed to old Jim who mans the front desk

  30. David Riley

    Zero Customer Service

    No email messages. Not one before or since 'the event' last week.

    I was completely in the dark and would still be in that situation if it wasn't for The Register.

    I have sent in a support request last Friday and received the automated enquiry number.

    Despite two further attempts to chase this via e-mail still no response.

    I will not pay to speak to them.

    Since I have not been included in any email updates or requests I wonder if they actually know for sure which accounts have been crippled.

    My only consolation is that my credit card expires before the next bill is due.

    What a farce.

  31. Anonymous Coward

    Dedicated servers - resellers, just do it.

    I can't believe some people here are expensive, you use shared servers which are slow and unreliable, you are subjected to reset passwords and other sudden changes made by the hosting company - and you can't back-up your data properly (i.e. daily, automatically).

    If you host more than 10 domains, you might as well get a dedicated server. No mySQL or scripting costs. No downtime, no slow loading pages, autonomy (i.e. no interference with FH updating mySQL and breaking your scripts or resetting your passwords).

    Dedicated servers are cheaper, faster, more secure (i.e. you can backup easily) and more flexible (you can install any components you like).

    Dare I say it, but we've not had any troubles with FH dedicated servers. Reseller account? All we had was trouble with FH. Ditch your reseller account and get a dedicated server (be it with FH or another company).

  32. Ged

    oh no

    Just managed to get my password through on the phone.

    However, the FH customer login pages are now down

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can you prevent a password scramble?

    What can you do to prevent Fasthosts re-setting your email passwords if you have already changed them? You might spend the next week changing passwords, only to find that another Fasthosts blunder forces you to do the whole thing again, this time with irate users/customers. Is there anything we can do to inform Fasthosts that passwords have been changed and insist that your account is exempt from the great password scramble - well there might be

  34. farcehosts victim

    Incompetence to the power of Incompetance

    This now even beyond farcical.

    I have spent hours and hours trying to get through on the support line - at great expense as these 0870 calls are not cheap. On two occaisions I have gone from queue position 20 or 18 back to 58!

    Today I recieved mail! This you will not believe. Instead of recieving my domain account and scrambled password I have recieved SOMEONE ELSES. They can't even stuff envelopes.

    Meanwhile I am still unable to change my passwords.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Don't use 0870

    Some kind soul on the "original" reg thread started last week put down a load of alternative numbers which WEREN'T 0870 .

    The one that I can remember and gets you through to the main menu where you press 2 for "support" is 01452 541499.

    For overseas people this will translate as 0044 1452 541499.

    Still not free, but gets them less revenue whilst we have to sit in their "support" queues.

    Definitely try them for compensation, if not, as mentioned on other forums if you used a credit (not debit) card you are protected and may be able to issue a chargeback through them.

    Me, I'm moving my remaining stuff from farcehosts to dedicated server with Already had one with them for over a year, and really happy with their service.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Support number: 01452 541499

    No need to use their costly support number, here's the standard number: 01452 541499.

    What I find amazing is how officious they are on the telephone, make sure you know your blood group, they'll probably ask for that, too.

    Oh, and it made it into The Times today:

  37. Paul
    Thumb Down

    It doesnt end there

    This week after being told to change all my passwords i did so on Tuesday to get my site working again. Then on Wednesday it had been reset again so i changed them back since once again the site was down. Of course once again today they have scrambled my passwords for the third time in three days.. after i have done exactly as requested by them. This is denial of service. What a farce.

    I will be demanding all my money back.

  38. Anonymous Coward

    It's now one week later, and still no access,

    I eventually got through to them on Saturday (after 2 hours), was given new passwords which did not work!

    It's now Thursday 6th December, one week after Fasthosts' monumental screw-up.

    I've still no post from Fasthosts and their "support" numbers have been engaged again all day. I can't even get into a queue. I've also given up with email "support", no answers after a week of emailing.

    There is not a single mention of this farce on the Fasthosts website. I consider this as dishonest. All we get is Fasthosts claiming their customers are full of "understanding and cooperation". B******ks am I! How dare they speak for me in such a patronising way!

    Fasthosts deserve to have their business go down, though I feel sorry for the people who would have to find new jobs through no fault of their own.

    PS. don't anyone reward Fasthosts for their arrogant incompetence by ringing their expensive 0870 number, try the numbers below that don't give them a cut of the call fees:

    01452 541499

    01452 541250

    01452 541251

    01452 541252

    Fax: (0870 8883555) 01452 538485

  39. David Ryans

    Charge back on your credit cards for any fasthosts payments - it costs them

    "Forcing passwords changes for people to stupid, shortsighted and/or selfish to do it themselves after a widely publicised major break-in seems perfectly reasonable to me. Your laziness is potentially affecting my business."

    Thanks for that, Mr Fasthosts employee, but many of us did all of the resetting demanded of us.

    Anyway, needless to say, still locked out, will never get back in in forseeable future.

    I will be charging back my credit card - can someone tell me what name they appear as on credit card statements? I have so many hosting/domain related charges I can't tell one from the other.


  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Farcehosts telephone support

    Previous to all this debacle, if you had to telephone their support lines, you were placed in the queue straight away and knew which "queue position" you were in immediately.

    So, they only get "their share" from the 0870 number on every whole minute spent on the line.

    Some time over the last week the b*stards have changed this - when you select 2 for "support" you have to wait just over 1 minute before finding out "you are at queue position 60-something".

    If that isn't a deliberate attempt at revenue generating then I don't know what is.

    Sorry, but I simply don't believe for a second that they have laid on more support people. Me, I'm still waiting a response for a fault logged BEFORE all this happened.

    Again, b*stards.

    In the interests of public awareness, anybody reading this who's a member of other forums might like to distribute the non-0870 numbers. The more people that know, the better.

  41. Robert Lee

    BBC Now reporting

  42. andy

    Got a phone call

    I was called by fasthots today too give me my password, I could not remember my pin (who can) so the guy just buggered off and im no further forward. He asked for my by name and used the number on the accont so who ele is it gonna be?

  43. lomokev


    going by a lot of peoples stories i was quite lucky, i got up saturday morning rang them "Que. position 36" i put phone down (not hung up) and would check every 20min for changes it was 2 and half hours till i got to speak to a human. after all that time i made sure i had all the details of the account holder right down to his shoe size i was not leaving anything to chance. i got the new password and made the guy on the phone repeat it about 4 times just to make sure. dose anyone know how much that call has cost me from a BT line?

    don't what is about those stupid fasthost text capitol things but i have to reload the the page about 10 times before i get one that i can see the difference i L l 1 !!!! unreal

    this hole thing has given me a kick up the ass i now store all my passwords for everything in a encrypted file and i have changed them all so they are all different

    i have a other sites hosted with a another company and they changed the mysql DB server address structure but they had the common decency to do a find and replace on your database connection scripts to make sure they worked! why could fasthosts not do this so that the web sites continued to function?

  44. Ivor griffiths

    How many letters have they posted?

    Friday and no letter. This means it has not been posted.

    I agree with a previous poster: I think they are being dishonest. They are also probably guilty of fraudulent trading. The negligent way in which they have dealt with it provides the basis of a claim. If they had worded things differently and done things differently they would not be liable for the criminal acts of a third party. However the negligence with which they have dealt with it leaves them wide open to litigation. A week's loss of revenue for all affected parties will be more money than they are worth so technically if everyone made a claim they would be forced into receivership. Anyone who pays by credit card can recover up to about £75000.00, it may have gone up in the latest Consumer Credit Act, even if they do go bust.

    I think the best way to deal with it is to send them an email claim for loss of revenue based on their negligence, get back in to your account, then transfer out any domains, paying any fees to do so. Host with someone else of course.

    If we all do this and they go bust everyone who has made a claim, even if not followed through (lets face it who can be arsed?) should make a complaint of fraudulent trading to the Police. I think the are guilty of fraudulent misrepresentation now as well because they have not made mention of the problem on their website. Someone should complain to the Gloucesterhire Trading Standards Office as they may be committing consumer offences as well as the Companies Act and Misrepresentation Act stuff.

    I'm just glad I don't host with them anymore.

  45. Anonymous Coward

    Another one bites the dust.

    Just as soon as I can get a response from the farcehosts support team I'm shifting my account to another hosting service.

    Unfortunately this could take some time since I've yet to get a response from them in under two weeks by email and every time I phone I'm somewhere around queue position 58!

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can't use old passwords

    I have a few customers who are quitting on me because they can't use their old passwords. They claim that technically the only thing that is at risk is their own mailboxes, it's not as if a hacker could compromise Fasthosts through an email password.

    They have also said that although it's a good plicy to change your passwords from time to time, people have the right not to, even if their own email is at risk.

    I guess the only other risk is that someone could use their account to generate spam, but Fasthosts already have filters in place that stop you sending out a certain number of emails in a short period, and this is a problem Fasthosts has to deal with, not the customer.

  47. Paul

    Re: Password Security - Sign of the Times

    Lets face it nothing is secure as the HMRC have demonstrated, and as a good customer of them and fasthosts, what really bugs me is the sudden unavailability and distinct lack of information available from Fasthosts.

    I sympathise with them in some respects as they obviously are not dealing with this at all well and some heads will roll and customers will retreat. But what grieves me is that they cannot even put anything on their websites about the current situation (unless they locked themselves out of course).

    If I was in that situation and was the CEO of Fasthosts, I wouldnt continue to take on new business until all my existing customers were happy, but you can bet your bottom dollar if you call the sales line, you will not be placed at queue position 64.

    But please can we stick by them until at least we are all back up and running again - I am really upset it has happened on the busiest time of the year, but I think that it will get sorted out - and just stop and think how many millions of online retailers who take all our information online whilst working from their bedrooms, but you make your choices and I think that at least Fasthosts will hopefully be more careful in future!

  48. Ivor griffiths

    Letter Arrives Password Does Not Work

    Some may say that a week long delay in sending the letters out will encourage people losing thousands to ring the premium rate phone number. Some would go further and say that if a percentage of the passwords that get sent out are not working this will encourage more. Some would say the whole thing is a scam.

    Not me. No. I am going to issue a summons on Tuesday morning in Lancaster County Court and seek an order making them tell me the password. I would rather give the County Court a hundred quid than Fasthosts ten pence. I can seek other disclosure as well, this will be interesting, like what was the alleged security breach then? As long as the question is relevant to my case they must answer or be in contempt and lose.

    I think if enough complained to ICSTIS (I think this is the acronym), who are the regulators in the UK of premium rate numbers, they may well intervene.

    It is looking as if those who say it is a premium rate phone scam, not me though, may be right.

  49. Webcrawler2050


    Currently been onthephone for two and a half hours - started at position 60 now at 13- moving 1 place every 15 minutes roughly

  50. keith clarke

    Further privacy leak

    Well fasthosts sent me someone elses Contoll panel passwords today, i have tried to call them to find out how/why they sent me the letter when its not my account but am unable to even get the phone to ring never mind speak to someone.

    The company is an utter joke and i have 4 boxs with them :( paid for a year in advance and only just renewed 3 months ago grrrr

    PROOF Submitted to TheRegister by email.

  51. Alan Quirk
    Thumb Up

    My password wasn't working but...

    This is the first time I've posted on El Reg, it's a shame it's under these circumstances.

    I'm a UK Reg customer and I finally got my letter through on Friday, but the password didn't work (I wasn't sure if it was just the rubbish captcha thing they've got going on or not) but I did manage to log in on the actual Fasthosts website with it. So that might be worth a try if you're not getting through.

    A couple of pence from me to you.

  52. Haku


    or Farcehosts is what I shall be calling them from now on depending on what context they're being referred to.

    I got my password for my main domain but after logging in to their Crap Panel and changing the FTP password so I can get round to updating it (locked out of it for almost 2 weeks now) I find that changing the password and entering the new password into my FTP program doesn't work, even tried with MSDOS' FTP program which I use quite a bit.

    Nada, nowt, zilch, diddly squat, sod all.

    The newly entered FTP password doesn't work, even when I tried changing it several times. Emailed them on two different subjects 3 days ago and got two identical boilerplate "we're ever so sorry" replies with no acknowledgement or resolution to my problems with them. Way to go Fuckedhosts!

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Farcehosts will NOT allow me to move hosts..

    Several emails to support asking THEM to change the DNS since they locked me out and I still don't have my new password in the post and I aint spending money sat on there non existant support lines.

    What a f**kin shambles.......

  54. Anonymous Coward

    We moved.. join the boat

    We have moved to and it would seem so have a few others.

    Join the boat, they are fantastic!

    Rescued from Fasthosts Hell:

    Saved from FarceHosts:

  55. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fasthosts can't accept so many logins

    Possibly because so many people are trying to log in prior to the password change, possibly for other reasons, the Fasthosts control panel is regularly broken.

    More on this with an example image at the link below, along with an interesting insight into the Fasthosts Hack.

  56. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Invoiced for old domain

    I have just been charged for a domain renewal which I have been unable to cancel because I could not get to the control panel and they say that they cannot cancel it after renewal - although renewal date is 6 Jan - they renew it 30 days earlier!!! Useless trying to contact them. What a farce - will be taking rest of business away from them

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    try this

    thanks to a poster over at for this - i for one will be following this advice - would like to know if it is accurate, but as i have to spend money somehwere, this seems to be as good a channel as any to pursue


    Anonymous said...

    Everyone who deals with Fasthosts uses a card to pay with. If a credit card s 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 applies up to £75,000.00.

    First step:

    Write letter of claim to card issuer citing legislation and explaining service has been suspended and unable to make contact with Merchant.

    Give them 14 days to make an offer of compensation (break it down).

    Second Step:

    Issue summons, if you wish to avoid risking costs limit the claim to £5000.00 if you only want £1000 limit it to that.

    Third Step:

    Fourteen days after the summons is issued make application for Judgement in default.

    Fourth Step:

    If they don't apply to oset aside judgement instruct the bailiffs.

    Even if you have no claim but are pissed off write the letter of claim. If enough people do this the Merchant Account Provider will shut the facility and they will be finished.

    I am going to do this. I am retired but was a Legal Aid Dobermann for many years. I know the Consumer Credit Act has been updated. I will check out the law and post the wording for the summons here in a week or so.


    December 3, 2007 4:30 PM

  58. lee

    its a joke - service provider with no service.

    just to let you know, i work in australia, been contracted over here by my company for a period, however i am a UK resident.

    to start with ukreg registraion page would not allow me to update my domain registration with my overseas address.

    this means that they have created a new security risk by posting my details to whomever lives in my house in the UK.

    well done fasthosts.

    so i called - many times, right now i am on hold for 4 hours and only at position 8 (i started at 29) - i will be reporting the irresponsible use of premium numbers to the regulators - i am holding until answered (i suspect by a machine) at whioch point my phone records will detail time and cost.

    i have managed to send a fax - all the published numbers are not working, the only one that went throguh was 01452 538485 - fax them there.

    i detailed that unless i had received my details via fax or email then i would reverse all charges from my credit card. failing this would write a letter of claim to the card, and then proceeding with legal action (probably along the lines above - i am seeking advice).

    this is a complete and utter joke. paying for a service i cannot use? not being able to contact the service provider (in accordance with their documented guidelines).

    i am also resurecting every email i can to support and responding (with the case ids in the subject). i am opening new cases every hour, then 10 minutes tomorrow, until i at least recieve a response from a person.

    all i want to do is settle my accounts, move them all and be done with it. i will be posting comments on all articles (BBC, Telegraph, guardian, etc, etc) by decent authors to this effect - i say consumer power has to win through. I believe that fasthosts are going feel the pressure of this episode, as people cannot afford to stand for a service provider with no service.

  59. John

    It's gone too far

    I've never heard anything like it - I've never seen anything like it.

    There's a distinct absence of consideration, thought, or responsibility. Of course, the comments are true. They say, "It's OK," While all of their customers are screaming out that there are problems.

    I got on board with them a few years back after reading positive reviews in magazines. Oh, how it's all gone wrong.

    Here's my open letter to them - although, judging by quantity of resposes to my emails (I'll give you a hint - it's a very round number), I wouldn't think they'd take the time to read it:

    It's how I feel - and where I'm going.

    Fasthosts - you've let me down.

  60. Paul Hillman
    Thumb Down

    Still waiting....

    Its now 4am and still on hold. Have been since 2am, started at position 36 got to 6 and the phone battery went flat... handy though I got back in at 16 50mins ago... now at 9



    I'm just recovering from a 6 hour! call that ended at midnight last night (14th December) I went from 58 odd all the way down - (I had handsets on charge being swapped as they ran out of charge, plus a wired landline off the hook - just in case!)

    I was nervous when I reached number 4 in the wait! having missed being number 13 for some lucky reason! (just then I read about the chap that was cut-off about now!!!!)

    Anyway when I got through I was so calm (&tired) I just went for the specific tasks in hand - the guy at the other end sounded like he'd had enough grief anyway!

    I was one of the lucky ones who rec'd a snail mail letter - would you believe when it said "Your new Control Panel Password is: ????????????l?" that the second to last letter - although identical to the last one in the word "Control" ie an "l" is in fact supposed to be an "i"

    I see someone else has also found this out too.

    As soon as this was typed in (with telephone help also) I got through to my Control Panel - what joy! I was closer to being in control myself!

    It seems clear to me that FARCEHOSTS (claiming to be number 1 provider) must NEVER have had the resources to deal with the customer base they had in the first place - this is at the very least MIS-MANAGEMENT at least - even if it also smells of Fraudulent practice if not?! A good revenue earner through premium rate lines indeed!

    Many Thanks to you guys who gave me a local number to ring - even though I live & work in GLOUCESTERSHIRE they seemed no easier to contact! - I was even going to go the the office in person when they were open - as the supposed "help-line" defences were doing their best keeping me out!

    I only rec'd automated emails telling me to look in my now locked up email account - even though I pleaded with them to ring me or email me (via yahoo - it WAS WORKING!)

    I WILL be looking into a claim for at least my 6 hour call - when I get the costs worked out - and wiill be looking into further action also.

  62. Jan
    Thumb Down

    Not the only one claiming David

    David, you will not be the only one taking action.

    I received no email, no letter, nothing to inform me of what is going on and if it was not for The Register and Google I would have known nothing about this. I have already wasted a great deal of money on their 0870 premium number plus, of course, my time.

    I am locked out of my email which I rely on for my business. I will be moving my domain name and exchange box - hope that is possible - to another provider on Monday and writing to fasthosts asking for a refund of the 12 months I paid up front back in the Autumn. If I do not get a refund and confirmation that my credit details are not longer with them I will pursue a claim through the small claims court.

    I currently have no access to my email and no means of getting in touch with them as I cannot even send an email as their automated email system bounces all emails back if you cannot access a PIN - I did not even know I had a PIN - through my Account but I cannot get into my account because they have changed the password without telling me.

  63. Andy White
    Thumb Down


    This is just complete ARSE!!!! Umm lets see I try to get into control panel....I can't they've scrambled my password...shite.....I phone customer support....1st Dec 07 - queue position 444 hold for 15 minutes queue position 443; 2nd Dec 07 queue position 454 hold for 30 minutes position 450; 3rd December queue position 54, hold for 1 hour queue position 49....still no bloody answer.....ahem, lets try emailing customer support.....ok I've got an auto-response....and nothing else......7th December....fasthosts take another £65 out my account for a bloody site that I cannot access....Farcehosts......ARSEHOLES!!!! I foresee a little call to Mr. Trading Standards coming up.....

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