If you were wondering how much the TalkTalk cyber-breach will cost the company – wonder no more. This morning, the company reported its first half results to the City, and the ISP confirmed it will have to withstand a £35-million-hit, following the attack that happened last month.
Total revenue for the six-month period ended 30 September climbed 4.7 per cent to £912m, and its broadband service lost 80,000 subscribers. It attributed the loss of 72,000 disconnections to non-paying customers after it changed its credit terms.
TalkTalk said it will offer free upgrades to all customers, but those who want to terminate their contract following the cyber-breach will not be able to do so for free.
The company, however, still expects to lose more subscribers because of the breach, but said "retention activity”, or how many people stayed after the breach, was “encouraging”.
“This adjustment reduces our opening on-net position from 4.18 million customers on 1 April 2015 to 4.11 million, comprising 3.37 million retail customers (residential consumers and small businesses) and 0.73 million wholesale customers,” TalkTalk said.
“However, TalkTalk takes the security of customers’ data extremely seriously and we are taking significant further steps to ensure our systems are protected, as well as writing to all our customers outlining what we are doing to keep their data safe,” said Dido Harding, TalkTalk CEO.
The firm added that it needed “to build simplified, resilient processes” and said that it “may need to reprioritise some of our technology work streams over the coming months”
Commenting on the news, Editor in Chief at www.money.co.uk, Hannah Maundrell, says this will a bitter pill for TalkTalk to swallow.
"However, offering an upgrade may not be the best way to win back favour; TalkTalk needs to give solid reassurance that a data breach like this absolutely cannot and will not happen again. It will be interesting to see whether its cut-price offers are enough to keep existing customers loyal, " she says.
"Anyone with TalkTalk still needs to be on their guard: keep an eye on your credit report (TalkTalk gave all customers free access) and bank statement, be suspicious of calls and emails supposedly from TalkTalk and if you used your account password anywhere else make sure you change it."