There were more red faces in Scotland Yard as Blighty’s top telcos denied a top cop’s claim that they had contacted all potential victims of the News of the Screws voicemail hacking.
Assistant Commissioner John Yates told Parliament that “all reasonable steps” had been taken to pass on a warning to the 126 likely victims of hacking.
However, Britain’s biggest mobile phone networks said that this was news to them and they had not even been asked by the Met police to tell customers anything.
Vodafone, O2 and Orange/T-Mobile told MPs there had been no such contact with the Yard. Vodafone and Orange/T-Mobile actually wrote to the Met last year asking for a list of punters who had been hacked. The coppers seem never to have written back.
According to the Independent, the Metropolitan Police now says that Yates had acknowledged in previous evidence to MPs that more should have been done to tell victims of phone hacking and it was reviewing its correspondence with phone companies.
This does not appear to be what was the understanding of MPs, who asked the telcos about the notification the next day of the hearing.
Yates was in charge of a 2009 re-examination of the phone-hacking scandal which found there were no grounds for a new investigation.