"Cramming" - Unauthorized Charges on Your Phone Bill
The practice of placing charges on your telephone billfor unauthorized products or services
CAses by Type Of phONe seRvICe:
2% Other (e.g., VOIP)
Cramming is one of the most common landline billing complaintshandled by the FCC, after the general category of billing adjustments
Only one out of 20 victims of cramming may be aware of cramming charges.2
WhAT DO CONsUMeRs
15 TO 20 MILLION
Number of American households estimatedto receive crammed charges on their wireline
bills each year.3
Range of cramming charges from a single0.1%
vendor per month.4 These charges can go
One FCC investigation found only 20 of 17,384
Charges sometimes appear as "serviceconsumers used the third-party service they
fee," "service charge," "other fees,"
were billed for. Another found that just 22 of
"voicemail," "mail server," "calling plan"
18,571 consumers charged for dial-around
or "membership," and may be cramming if
long distance actually used the service. Usage
they were unauthorized or if the cost was
in both cases: roughly 0.1 percent.
1. FCC complaint data 2008-2010
2. Expert Marylander survey conducted for Federal Trade Commission case
3. FCC projection based on Expert Marylander survey and California data
4. FCC Enforcement Bureau
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