BT has been caught cheating on the Ministry of Defence in a bid to meet call targets and has been ordered to pay £1.3 million after the fraud was put in the limelight by the National Audit Office at the telecom giant's call centre in Kettering.
The culprits have been sacked and the call centre closed after it was found that they called each other in an effort to meet their internal targets. BT has been the MoD main phone service provider since 1997 and the current contract is set to end by 2012.
The Private Finance Initiative deal that binds BT to the MoD is worth more than £3 billion and highlights the need to have a more stringent monitoring system in order to prevent abuse from government contractors like BT.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Defence said that "The Defence Fixed Networks Integrated Project Team, which is responsible for managing the contract, has reviewed and strengthened their service assurance and management process, with the assistance of external independent advisors. These robust management controls should ensure that there is no recurrence of this fraud."
The NAO report said that it took so long for the scam to be uncovered because it did not significantly affect the quality of service in order to cause customers to complaint.