THE Ministry of Defence has spent thousands of pounds calling the speaking clock after failing to implement a ban on the number.
Since 2011, the department has spend more than £40,000 dialling the service.
Last year, it was reported the MoD had brought in a ban on ringing 123 and staff had been told of websites they could use to check the time instead.
But even with the ban, the final bill for 2012 was £18,804 and more than £6,000 has been spent this year already.
An MoD spokesman said: ‘A ban was introduced to our newest telephone network, but because of a technical error there has been some inadvertent spending on the speaking clock which has now been stopped.
‘Overall spend on this has decreased from more than £15,000 in 2011 to just £6,000 this year since the ban was introduced.’