BT Internet customers have again been hit by server problems at the ISP, preventing them from accessing e-mail for several days last week.
Many small companies use BT Internet to host their Web sites and e-mail services, and could have been hit financially as a result of the problems. Although customers are not officially entitled to compensation following technical problems, BT has not ruled out a goodwill gesture.
Last month, BT Internet customers were hit by proxy spamming attacks that saw the BT Internet servers illegally turned into junk-mail distributors by hackers. BT says it has now closed a loophole in its systems to prevent this from happening again.
This week, however, 2,000 BT customers were unable to use their e-mail accounts following server upgrades being made by the company. BT confirmed the lack of access should not have happened while the work was being carried out, which led to customers among its 400,000 base being unable to use e-mail from Monday to Thursday last week.
A BT spokesman said, "There was a software upgrade to the database for the application servers being carried out, and there were problems as a result of that. There are now automated checks in place to avoid problems like this occurring in the future."
BT Internet was not the only BT business to suffer from IT problems last week. BT Cellnet pre-pay mobile customers were unable to load units onto their handsets during two days last week, because of both capacity problems on the network and the fact that BT Cellnet was installing new anti-fraud measures.