Technology

Woman claims she was stalked after EE-employed ex-partner accessed her data

Francesca Bonafede said she received ‘endless' texts and the man appeared outside her new address.

An EE customer has claimed she was stalked by an ex-partner who worked for the firm after he accessed her personal data without permission.

Francesca Bonafede said her phone number was switched to a new handset and her address and bank account details were accessed.

She told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme that she had to involve the police in order to spot the harassment she received and accused EE of not taking the issue seriously.

“It was really distressing and I had to go to the police and tell them what was happening,” she said.

“They asked me repeatedly what EE was doing about all this and I just had to say, ‘Actually, I don’t have a clue because they don’t keep me updated’.”

EE said its internal policies had not been followed, the employee no longer worked for the company and it apologised to Ms Bonafede.

Ms Bonafede said she first contacted the firm in February 2018 after her phone suddenly stopped working.

After several days without phone signal, she said she was told someone had visited an EE shop, requested a new Sim card and switched her account to a new handset.

After calling EE, Ms Bonafede said she recognised the new address registered on the system as that of her ex-partner.

She claims her former partner texted her “endless times” in an attempt to persuade her to withdraw her complaint, and turned up at her new address on multiple occasions, an address she said he had learned of through accessing her data.

The man was eventually arrested and given a harassment warning by police before the contact stopped.

Ms Bonafede said she did not know for sure why her ex-partner wanted to access her account data.

In a statement, an EE spokesman said: “Protecting our customers’ data and privacy is our top priority, and we have strict policies and procedures in place to keep personal details safe.

“This was the action of one employee whose specific intent was to obtain Ms Bonafede’s details illegally.

“As soon as she contacted us with concerns we immediately carried out an investigation into what happened and our policies were not followed in this instance.

“This matter has been dealt with internally and the employee involved no longer works for us.

“While we worked quickly to protect Ms Bonafede, we have apologised to her for the distress caused, sharing with her the steps we took to investigate to reassure her that we acted immediately and took it extremely seriously.”

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