Warning on PABX conmen

2010-10-20 00:00

LOCAL businesses have been warned about the prevalence of unscrupulous telecommunication operators plying their trade in Pietermaritzburg and the midlands.

Lesley Gounden of Midlands Communications told The Witness that several so-called authorised suppliers of private automatic branch exchange (PABX) business telephone systems have duped local businesses in recent months.

“They’re supplying and installing PABX equipment without the necessary Icasa [Independent Communications Authority of South Africa] licence,” Gounden warned

The implication for business owners is that service providers such as Telkom and Neotel will not entertain any faults logged on their lines because the company supplying and installing the system does not have the necessary licence to do the work, he explained

Gounden added that these operators usually use voice-over-Internet-protocol (VOIP) products as their marketing tool, stating that they can help businesses save 30% to 50% on their telephone calls.

VOIP is both a legitimate and working solution for businesses to save money on telecommunications, provided that it is acquired from an Icasa-certified dealer, Gounden explained.

“The supplier must be able to produce a valid Icasa certificate when producing quotations.

“There are various requirements in order to obtain a certificate.

“For example, the technician must have an N3 level electrical certificate, as well as a matric certificate.

“He or she must be successfully trained on the products in question.”

Gounden said that another consequence of using the services of an uncertified dealer is that the business will then have to search for and use the services of a legitimate supplier, thereby incurring additional costs.

Businesses should also ensure that the Icasa certificate produced by the supplier is valid.

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