NYS AG Spitzer Gets Verizon to Wake Up. A Bit

"Verizon to block `cramming' of computer charges on phone bills

By MICHAEL GORMLEY, AP Writer April 3, 2005, 12:16 PM EDT

"Albany NY - Verizon Communications Inc. will fight the 'cramming ' of unauthorized charges by companies such as Internet providers that appear on phone bills.

"New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer said the settlement is the first time a telephone company has been required to monitor and correct the fraudulent billing practices by other companies on phone bills. The action follows complaints about the unauthorized charges by Internet providers, Web hosting and other services on Verizon phone bills.

"Spitzer said small businesses and residential customers in New York claimed Verizon did nothing to help them resolve the charges and instead told Verizon customers to solve the matter with those companies. The agreement applies only to New York customers.

[snipppety snip. There's nothing yet on Spitzer's web site so I don't know quite how extensive this agreement is. As we all know, there's plenty of sleaze in the entire "third party" billing the telcos handle and the phrase in the article about "Internet providers, Web hosting..." is very selective ... ]

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Danny Burstein
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