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The delights of a not-quite self-healing network

Look at this rubbish:

I’m trying to pay my sodding T-Mobile bill.

I’ve been trying to pay it for the last 5 minutes.

The LAST thing I want to do is phone up and read off numbers on a credit card. That, to me, seems highly, highly ridiculous in this age of connectivity.

Or apparent connectivity.

The first time I tried to pay, the page timed out because the statse.webtrendslive.com server wasn’t responding. So they can’t manage high availability.

And neither, it seems, can the people behind cap.securecode.com. Whoever they are. This is a system that pops up whenever you’re processing a UK-credit/debit card transaction to further verify your identity.

Which is great when it works.

But when it doesn’t, I’m left looking and feeling highly stupid for trying to pay.

And T-Mobile are feeling my private wrath. Because they’re the brand in front of the screen right now.

Have we, in this marketplace filled with high availability clusters, cloud-managed virtual self-healing networking capacity, still not got things working?

On the 8th time, it actually all worked. I verified myself with the securecode system.

Aaaaaaand then the transaction completed, handing me back to T-Mobile who promptly failed the payment on instructions from my card issuer.

Why?

Because I’d tried the transaction 7 times too many, unbeknownst to me.

Total bollocks.

Five-nines. My arse.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

9 replies on “The delights of a not-quite self-healing network”

eh, whining? I don't think so….

I think you'll find that this problem is one of the leading problems in the ecommerce world and its costing firms billions year on year as well as pissing customers off.

What people don't realise is that, yes you will get your money back if your card is used fraudulently but where does that money come from… Nine times out of ten it’s the person selling the goods and not the card company. They do this by saying that they will cover their customer’s loss but they will also remove your card acceptance facilities in order for this not to happen again. The shop then has and option to cover the loss or go out of business. Usually the shop pays for the loss and that’s it.

In the case of airline tickets, someone buys a ticket to NYC for £500. The travel agent makes roughly £10 – £25 on the ticket but takes the risk on the whole ticket. If the transaction proves fraudulent then the travel agent pays £500 to the card company or goes out of business. So if the agent sells £10,000 worth of tickets to NYC (20) and one is a dud then all profit is lost. If you have 5 then you're screwed.

eh, whining? I don't think so….

I think you'll find that this problem is one of the leading problems in the ecommerce world and its costing firms billions year on year as well as pissing customers off.

What people don't realise is that, yes you will get your money back if your card is used fraudulently but where does that money come from… Nine times out of ten it’s the person selling the goods and not the card company. They do this by saying that they will cover their customer’s loss but they will also remove your card acceptance facilities in order for this not to happen again. The shop then has and option to cover the loss or go out of business. Usually the shop pays for the loss and that’s it.

In the case of airline tickets, someone buys a ticket to NYC for £500. The travel agent makes roughly £10 – £25 on the ticket but takes the risk on the whole ticket. If the transaction proves fraudulent then the travel agent pays £500 to the card company or goes out of business. So if the agent sells £10,000 worth of tickets to NYC (20) and one is a dud then all profit is lost. If you have 5 then you're screwed.

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