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Would $500 Cause You To Hang Up The Phone?

After you're done surfing, don't forget to hang up the phone if you're using dial-up to access the internet.  You can incur some pretty hefty fees if the phone number you dial is long-distance from your home or business.  According to the AP article linked to above, "About 700 consumers in the Rochester area alone were billed more than $200,000 (euro163,760) combined in unexpected Internet access charges in an eight-month period, while others elsewhere were charged $5,000 to $10,000 more than expected because the Internet connection was left open through a long-distance number."

Ouch.

New York, however, just passed a law that fines internet service providers $500 if they fail to warn you that you're using a long-distance line.  That'll teach 'em, and certainly do a lot to save consumers money.  Right.

This statute is supposedly the first of its kind, and hopefully the last.  If legislatures want to protect consumers, it may take more than $500 to dissuade ISPs.

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Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Thursday, August 18, 2005 at 09:25 Comments Closed (0) |
 
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