Phone Services

Published on July 28th, 2014

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FTC Issues New Set of Recommendations to Prevent Cramming

About four weeks after the FTC filed a multimillion-dollar complaint against T-Mobile on cramming issues, the agency on Monday issued a report on how mobile carriers and others should protect consumers from it.

A press release lists five recommendations for companies to follow to prevent cramming, which is the illegal practice of hiding unauthorized charges, including giving customers the express right to block third-party charges and developing a transparent process for resolving disputes. The agency brought three cases of mobile cramming in 2013, which resulted in more than $160 million in judgments.

In response to the July 1 complaint against T-Mobile, USA CEO John Legere said there were protections already in place and blamed the third-party providers for acting irresponsibly. The FTC alleges in its complaint that T-Mobile used third-party billing to collect up to 40 percent of the total amount charged to customers.

On Tuesday, the FTC announced that a California federal court had “temporarily halted” a mobile phone cramming scheme that allegedly bilked more than $100 million from unknowing consumers. Previously, the FTC brought a complaint against the six defendants that accused them of tricking consumers into providing their mobile phone numbers with bogus offers and gift cards posted on fake websites.

For more tips on protecting yourself from cramming and other types of cellphone fraud, click here.

This story was updated on 7/29/2014.

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