Fines Considered for ‘Slamming’
WASHINGTON (AP) _ Federal regulators proposed a $640,000 fine against AT&T Thursday for allegedly switching consumers’ long-distance service without their permission.
The Federal Communications Commission said it had received more than 1,000 complaints against the company, the nation’s largest long-distance carrier, in a span of nine months alleging the illegal practice known as ``slamming.″
After investigating, the agency based its proposed fine on a dozen of these complaints, involving customers in California, Texas, New York and other states. The company now has 30 days either to pay the fine or show why it should be reduced or removed.
AT&T said it would promptly review its records on these cases, noting that it handles tens of millions of long-distance change requests from consumers each year.
``AT&T has a zero tolerance policy toward slamming, and we lead the industry on this score,″ the company said in a statement. AT&T added that it has set up a resolution center specifically to handle problems with change requests.
On the Net: AT&T: http://www.att.com/
Federal Communications Commission site: http://www.fcc.gov