In this age of powerful smartphones and apps with required data plans, sometimes we forget that there are still plenty of customers that don't have any need for Internet access on their phone. Verizon has announced that it will pay $90 million to 15 million of its data-less customers after the users were charged for Internet access even if they didn't actually use any data. Since 2007, multiple subscribers have been charged $1.99/MB for data because their handsets were silently using small amounts of data in the background or after an Internet browser was accidentally accessed and then closed immediately. Verizon had been refusing to give refunds for this usage, but after receiving a substantial amount of complaints, the FCC has pressured VZW to refund anywhere between $2 and $6 to the wronged users. The reimbursements will appear as a credit on either the October or November billing statement. Customers that were affected but have since left Verizon will receive a check in the mail. You can check out the full press release down below.
It's great to see Verizon refunding the money to their customers, even if it's only a few bucks. After all, it's the right thing to do, plus that's like a free coffee or fast food value meal! Were any of you affected by a Verizon device's silent data access?
Verizon Wireless Issuing Credits To Customers
BASKING RIDGE, NJ - OFFICIAL STATEMENT.
May be attributed to Mary Coyne, Deputy General Counsel, Verizon Wireless:
Verizon Wireless values our customer relationships and we always want to do the right thing for our customers.
In October and November, we are notifying about 15 million customers, through their regular bill messages, that we are applying credits to their accounts due to mistaken past data charges. We will mail former customers refund checks. In most cases, these credits are in the $2 to $6 range; some will receive larger credits or refunds.
As we reviewed customer accounts, we discovered that over the past several years approximately 15 million customers who did not have data plans were billed for data sessions on their phones that they did not initiate. These customers would normally have been billed at the standard rate of $1.99 per megabyte for any data they chose to access from their phones. The majority of the data sessions involved minor data exchanges caused by software built into their phones; others involved accessing the web, which should not have incurred charges. We have addressed these issues to avoid unintended data charges in the future.
Verizon Wireless issues credits to customers from time to time based on regular review and monitoring. When we identify errors, we remedy them as quickly as possible. Our goal is to maintain our customers' trust and ensure they receive the best experience possible.