$1 Million Fine for Telecoms Firm Accused of Cramming and Slamming
In 2017, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) found long-distance carrier Advantage Telecommunications to be in violation of its “truth-in-billing” rules.
“Cramming” is when a telecoms service provider adds, or allows a third-party to add, unauthorized or unsolicited charges onto a customer’s bill. The FCC found that Advantage Telecommunications had adopted cramming practices, failing to clearly explain its charges to its customers, the majority of which were small enterprises.
The company was also found guilty of illegally switching its customers’ long-distance carriers without authorization, a practice known as “slamming”. In these instances, staff reportedly masqueraded as employees of their customers’ genuine long-distance providers, and subsequently switched their services. Through the FCC, Advantage Telecommunications customers filed over 150 complaints against the company.
The FCC fined Advantage Telecommunications $1 million for illegally switching its customers’ long-distance carriers without proper authorization. The company had also added unapproved charges to customer phone bills.
Financial Loss for Customers
Advantage Telecommunications, Cramming and slamming, Financial fraud