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AT&T To Refund $88 Million To Customers In Mobile Cramming Settlement With FTC

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The Federal Trade Commission revealed that it will now be giving out $88 million in refunds to over 2.7 million customers of AT&T who were charged for third-party fees without their consent.

The money, according to the FTC, represents that largest amount that will be returned to customers so far in relation to mobile cramming.

AT&T's Mobile Cramming Case

The refunds that the FTC will give out to AT&T customers relate to a settlement that the carrier made back in October 2014, when it paid a $105 million fine for mobile cramming.

Mobile cramming is described as the practice of charging customers on a recurring basis, with customers not agreeing to be billed for such charges most of the time.

AT&T was involved in the practice with two companies, namely Acquinity and Tatto, as the carrier charged customers $9.99 per month for things such as ringtones, horoscopes, love tips, and fun facts. AT&T then kept 35 percent of the amounts that customers paid.

FTC Refund Program For AT&T Customers

For current and former AT&T customers who believe that they should be among the subscribers who should be getting a refund, it is great to know that you actually do not have to do anything to get back money from AT&T.

Through the refund program of the FTC, 2.5 million customers who are still signed up for AT&T's services will be receiving a credit on their bill over the next 75 days. In addition, for more than 300,000 former customers of AT&T who were affected by the mobile cramming case, they will be receiving a check in their mail containing their portion of the refund.

According to the FTC, the average refund amount is $31. The credits to AT&T bills and the refund checks will begin to be sent out by Epiq Systems, the administrator for the refund program.

Mobile Cramming Comes To An End

AT&T is not the only company to have received mobile cramming charges, as in December 2014, T-Mobile also agreed to pay at least $90 million in refunds as a settlement over the practice, while Sprint was slapped with a $105 million fine for doing the same thing.

Companies that have been charged with mobile cramming practices have also been required to change how they process third-party billing, which has put an end to the scam and has saved subscribers from the unwanted charges.

As for AT&T, it is once again under scrutiny by the FCC, as the company's Zero Rating DirecTV plans could be in violation of net neutrality regulations.

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