Verizon Wireless pays FCC $25M for years of false data charges, Affected Customers Get Pennies
The Federal Communications Commission said Thursday it has reached a record $25 million settlement with Verizon Wireless for wrongly charging subscribers “mystery” Internet fees over the past several years.
The payment will go to the U.S. Treasury and is the largest settlement in FCC history. The settlement also ends the FCC’s ten-month investigation into overcharges at Verizon Wireless, the agency said in a press release.
With the action, Verizon Wireless’s total costs associated with false data fees reached $77.8 million, one of the largest payouts for false business practices in the communications services industry. Verizon said earlier this month it would refund about 15 million subscribers $52.8 million for those unwanted data charges. Verizon partly attributed the problem to a software glitch in phones.
Of course, if they were doing this right, the customers would get refunded for all overcharges–with interest. Instead, 15 million customers are getting somewhere between $2 and $6 each. The only people who win: the government and the lawyers involved with this settlement.