Outrage after a computer store billed an unknowing grandma $1,599 for paying for things they usually get FREE
- A grandma had to shell out a whopping $1,599 for a regular iPhone repair
- The King IT Store charged her $978 for the malware removal and $98 for the iOS update
- The woman’s son wrote a scathing Google review about the huge bill
- The computer store regretted the mistake and said the woman was refunded in full
A grandmother was hit with a huge $1,599 bill after taking her iPhone to a computer repair shop.
The 80-year-old woman went to the King IT store in Caloundra on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast this week for an iPhone repair.
The shop charged her $978 to scan and remove malware — which should typically cost between $100 and $300, according to an Airtasker price search.
The computer store’s itemized costs (pictured) included $98 for an iOS update that a user can do for free, $59 for a 30-minute technical lesson, and $69 for antivirus software installation
The woman’s son took to King IT’s Google reviews page and wrote a stinging reprimand for charging her the $1,600 (pictured, a stock image).
Other costs included $98 for an iOS update that a user can do for free, $59 for a 30-minute technical lesson, and $69 for antivirus software installation.
The woman’s son wrote a scathing review about King IT’s Google account.
“Local computer store [King IT Caloundra] billed my 80-year-old mother $1,500 to remove a “virus” from her iPhone,” he wrote.
Kapersky, a cybersecurity firm, said getting a virus on an iPhone is “extremely rare” but could happen if the phone is “jailbroken” — where a user unlocks it to gain more control over its operating system.
Jailbreaking a phone can remove all the restrictions that Apple imposes on its software, including deleting those apps that normally cannot be deleted.
However, the IT store updated the woman’s iOS, meaning her phone wasn’t jailbroken and therefore she didn’t need the $69 antivirus software.
King IT issued a statement on Facebook after the son’s furious scrutiny, saying the woman’s charge had been a mistake.
It also confirmed that she had received a full refund of the $1,599.
“Recently, one of our associates at our Caloundra store made a poor judgment, resulting in a substantial bill to one of our valued customers,” their social media post read.
“This is unacceptable and should not have happened. We would like to sincerely apologize, offer a full refund and compensate our customer for the grief we have caused.
“Rest assured, this will never happen again. We are now reviewing our internal processes and training and taking disciplinary action.
“We are sorry and we will try very hard to show that this is not what King IT is about.”
The IT store took to its social media (pictured) and said the mistake was made by one of its employees in “poor judgement” and it would offer a full refund
Daily Mail Australia confirmed to the shop that the woman was refunded the full amount.
Despite the refund, the store is still being inundated with angry comments about the bill.
‘I find [the tech lesson] is free at the [Apple] Genius bar. They have classes where you can learn basic things,” one said.
“They could have probably spent 15 seconds of that time showing someone how to flip the switch to turn on automatic iOS updates instead of charging this as a separate “service” for an additional $98. Total fleece job,’ said another.
“You spend time doing everything for one client, you can bill however you like… That’s the way business works. It’s a transaction, not a giveaway,” said a third.