118 800 mobile directory 'temporarily suspended'

Directory services goes ex-directory overnight
Directory services goes ex-directory overnight

A new service that claimed to offer a directory of 'millions' of UK mobile phone numbers has chosen to 'temporarily suspend' its service.

An announcement today cited technical issues that forced 118 800 to take down both its web site and its mobile call centre. However, its landline service remains available.

118 800 launched less than a month ago, allowing users to request a name and mobile number of any given person for £1.

118 800 service not 'faultless'

A spokesman for the company said, "The high number of queries 118 800 has received since launching have highlighted some technical glitches in the system. To ensure 118 800 provides faultless customer service the decision has been made to temporarily suspend the service allowing for technical work to be completed."

If a requested person's phone number is in the directory, they receive a text with the number of the person trying to contact them, asking them to complete the call.

The service proved controversial after it was revealed that Connectivity, the company behind the 118 800 numbers, had sourced most of its directory from marketing lists held by other companies.

Users can request to be removed from the 118 800 directory, and the company said today, "All requests to be made 'ex directory' that have been sent to the service, via the website or text message, are being dealt with. 118 800 will begin taking further ex-directory requests as soon as the service is resumed."

The company said that its website at www.118800.co.uk would be available again tomorrow.

Mark Harris is Senior Research Director at Gartner.