2018-02-25 Telus misleading people, taking landlines

[Benefits – Big Six – Bills – Report Problems to: Consumer Affairs, Consumer Protection BC, Consumer Information Canada – Costs – Customer Loyalty Rebate – Data – Dieter Helm – Disconnections (Internet & Telephone) – Dumb Mode – EDF – GCHQ – Hacking – Hayden Wood, Bulb – IoT Devices – Joe Malinowski, Energy Shop – Modem Switching – NanoCrystals – Safety – SaskPower – Security – Shaw – Smart Grid – Smart Meters – SMETS 1 & 2 – SSE – Telus Elimination of Copper Wire Landlines – Vincent de Rivaz – Which? – Wireless Electricity / Power Transmission | Mission, BC – UK]

1)    Below is an article copied in full by a member in the UK because the article at the link is available only to subscribers. The electrical system in the UK is different from ours in that there is competition and the smeters must be flexible enough to allow changing providers.  But like other programs, the technology is evolving to address identified problems, similar to SaskPower working to find safer smeters. One of the major problems of all programs, in addition to safety, is security. So far, this problem continues. As with any computer-internet connected device, as one solution is found, new hackers discover ways to get around it.

UK Security Concerns – GCHQ

(click on photos to enlarge)

A host of security experts, including the Oxford academic professor Dieter Helm, have concerns that smart meters can be hacked and energy supplies disrupted as part of a terrorist or criminal attack.

CHQ was involved in the design process amid concerns that loopholes in the encryption technology could leave the energy grid at the mercy of terrorists or foreign powers. Technology companies told parliament, however, that they were worried about the risk of “rogue programmers” in metering companies. Last year The Times reported that almost six million homes were set to reject the devices, with more than half citing hacking and data protection fears.”

2)    Re. the article in last night’s update [http://www.stopsmartmetersbc.com/2018-02-24-new-magic-wireless-electricity/] about “wireless electricity grid” with NanoCrystals, many people thought this sounded unrealistic and more like a con job.  One technical member said this:

Years ago one could have a crystal radio, worked well if you listened on ear buds.  The power they refer to is there, whether it is possible to gather enough electricity to power all they are talking about is another question.

The promotion of the technology has the feel of a con – while there is a possibility that in time we may reach this point, at this time I am not comfortable that technology has reached even close to what this hype says.  Interesting they talk more about the money than the science.  Even if I had the money, I would be slow about investing.

3)    Another example of reprehensible business by Telus. I recommended to the member who sent this in that Telus should be reported to Consumer Affairs for misleading people, and disregarding their wishes. Please spread the word so others know what Telus is doing so they can protect themselves.

– https://www.telus.com/en/bc/internet/fibre/new/faq
https://savelandlines.org/

“Re: Point 1 [http://www.stopsmartmetersbc.com/2018-02-24-new-magic-wireless-electricity/]

This just happened to my elderly dad in Mission.  A Telus rep came to his door and said she would like to offer him a customer loyalty rebate of $250 if he pledged to stay with Telus for the next 2 years. He agreed as he has always used Telus. She made no mention of switching his equipment. A few days later a sale rep called saying they would like to come by on Friday to switch his modem.  My Dad said his modem was working fine and that he did not need a new one and the rep then said they were going to install his fiber optics and remove his copper landline. As I had warned my Dad of this, he refused (most elders would not understand what they were agreeing to) and no appointment was made. On Friday morning my Dad’s landline was disconnected.  After 2 hours on the phone, he got it back. At midnight on Friday his internet was disconnected – after another hour with Telus on the phone they got that up and running again.

My guess is that Telus is doing this to corner the home video and TV market, to beat out Shaw and other competitors.” 

[Consumer Protection BC – https://www.consumerprotectionbc.ca/contact-us/

Consumer Information Canada – http://www.consumerinformation.ca/eic/site/032.nsf/eng/h_01165.html

Consumer Protection Legislation in Canada – https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/icgc.nsf/eng/07554.html]

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CONSUMER AFFAIRS

Say no to energy smart meters

The device meant to cut your energy bills won’t work if you switch supplier by David Byers – February 24 2018, 12:01am, The Times

 

The technical problems being encountered with smart meters are so great that you should refuse to have one in your home until they are fixed, experts say.

Smart meters are internet-connected devices designed to help you to save money by displaying the amount and cost of your fuel usage. They send automatic readings direct to suppliers, with the aim of ending estimated billing, and will supposedly save the average household £47 a year.

However, the model being installed into households by energy companies may stop working if you switch supplier, which is the most effective way to cut your bills. As a result, 866,000 of these devices — one in ten of the total number introduced in an £11 billion government initiative — are operating on “dumb” mode, exactly like traditional, non-smart, gas and electricity meters.

Hayden Wood, the co-founder of Bulb, a renewable energy company, says: “I advise households to hold off accepting first-generation meters because they make it harder for people to switch supplier and keep the smart functionality.”.

You can reject installation, unless your old meter is broken, in which case your supplier is allowed to install a smart meter in dumb mode.

Joe Malinowski of the Energy Shop, a price comparison site, says that a smart meter should not need to be replaced within 18 months, unlike other gadgets.

“If you get one installed you should rightly expect to have it done once, have it installed properly and for it to work reliably and consistently with whichever energy supplier you choose to buy your energy from,” he says.

The problems stem from the fact that Smets 2, the most advanced smart meters, have been delayed by technical issues. Yet instead of pausing the nationwide programme of installation, energy companies were told to plough on with installing older Smets 1 devices, many of which cannot adapt to a change of energy company.

Which?, the consumer body, says that this is why 40 per cent of people with a smart meter are dissatisfied.

About 8.6 million meters have been installed, with energy companies complaining about the spiralling costs of the project, and some identifying it is a reason to raise prices. The government’s target is to put 50 million meters in households by 2020, but this would require 24 to be put in every minute for the next two years.

In March Vincent de Rivaz, the former chief executive of EDF, said that the problems “now mean millions more customers will get less digitally sophisticated meters than intended”.

SSE, another one of the Big Six energy companies, suggests that the technological delay is adding to its costs.

A spokeswoman for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy says: “Smart meters are putting consumers in control of their energy use and helping them to save money, taking £300 million off domestic energy bills in 2020 alone. They are a vital step towards a more flexible, cost-effective energy system that works better for consumers.”

The government has promised that the Smets1 meters will be upgraded to work properly, regardless of your energy provider, by the end of this year, and Smets 2 meters will soon also be ready to install.

A host of security experts, including the Oxford academic professor Dieter Helm, have concerns that smart meters can be hacked and energy supplies disrupted as part of a terrorist or criminal attack.

GCHQ was involved in the design process amid concerns that loopholes in the encryption technology could leave the energy grid at the mercy of terrorists or foreign powers. Technology companies told parliament, however, that they were worried about the risk of “rogue programmers” in metering companies. Last year The Times reported that almost six million homes were set to reject the devices, with more than half citing hacking and data protection fears.

 

 

Sharon Noble
Director, Coalition to Stop Smart Meters

The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice — it is conformity.
~ Rollo May

Smart Meters, Cell Towers, Smart Phones, 5G and all things that radiate RF Radiation