Andy Rubin Apologizes for Customer Service Issues, Offers Affected Customers a Free Phone and More
Essential Products hasn’t had the best product launch when it comes to their very first smartphone. The company had to delay the release multiple times but was finally able to get things squared away and began shipping out devices. However, just yesterday the company made a mistake when they were trying to verify the identity of about 70 people who had pre-ordered the Essential Phone. This resulted in a number of people giving other affected customers their driver’s license information because the email wasn’t properly sent out.
Different companies verify identity in different ways. For some unknown reason (such as shipping a phone to a different address than the billing address), Essential Products felt the need to verify the identity of approximately 70 people. However, when the company’s customer care sent out the email, it wasn’t BCC’d so anyone who replied were giving their information out to the entire email list. Some publications felt this was a scam perpetrated by a hacker, but Andy Rubin admits it was an accident on their end.
Requesting this type of information over email is very strange in the first place, but it’s not like they had many other alternatives. Calling them out of the blue would seem suspicious but they could have set something up on their website and asked their customers to submit the information that way. What’s done is done though and to help those who were impacted by this issue, Essential Products will be giving those people 1 full year of LifeLock service.
Some will feel this isn’t enough, and Andy Rubin agrees. In response to a comment on Twitter, Mr. Rubin has said the company will also offer these customers a free Essential Phone for having to deal with the issue. Again, this isn’t much if they have to deal with identity theft issues, but hopefully the LifeLock service will be able to handle that for them. All in all, it definitely hasn’t been a good month for the company, but we’ll have to see how they handle things from here on out.