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    Posted Jan 21, 2012
    11:01:51 AM
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    At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

    I got a spam SMS from 31850 asking me to sign up for some quiz, I just ignored it, I've always heard not to reply 'STOP' to spamers because then they know your number is real and being spammers they don't care what you reply. I've seen messages on this board where people reply 'STOP' and it does no good.

     

    Anyway, I just got my bill and AT&T let this "third party" (it's in quotes because they have to be in cahoots with at&t for this to happen) charge me $9.99 for their subscription. I don't have time to deal with it now but I'll probably have to take time out of my day monday call At&t.

     

    I usually don't get upset over stuff but I can't believe that AT&T lets someone sign me up for a  $9.99 a month charge without consent, without a password or pin or an email or anything.

     

    By the way, you are all now signed up for my subscription service.  Please read this sentence to confirm.

     

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    Oct 29, 2012 12:19:22 PM
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    Edited by jamileh on Oct 29, 2012 at 12:20:28 PM

    Hey folks, 

     

    There's a lot of heated discussion around this and I want to step in with a couple key points. 

     

    First and foremost - these forums are here to help. I know topics like this can get people frustrated and heated but this is a community of peers and courtesy is imperative. Please keep in mind that everyone here is here to help or to get help. This is not a place for name calling and nastiness. 

     

    Secondly - Scammers like those talked about in this thread typically use confusing jargon and sneaky tactics to get you signed up for their service. 

     

    The best defense you have against these companies is to make sure that purchase blocker is applied to each phone line. This is a free service and will not allow 3rd party purchases to be made against your account; regardless of if you (or a family member) accidentally agree to terms and conditions from these companies. 

     

    Here is a post from earlier this year that provides more information about purchase blocker and how to prevent 3rd party charges: http://forums.att.com/t5/Wireless-Billing/3rd-Party-Subscriptions-amp-Purchase-Blocker/td-p/3095123

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    As of May 1st, I am no longer serving as the Community Manager for AT&T. This account will no longer be able to accept private messages. If you have an account related issue, please send a private message to ATTCustomerCare.

    Did a post have a solution that worked for you? Help other people find solutions faster by marking posts that helped you as an "Accepted Solution". Learn about accepted solutions here.

    I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent AT&T’s position, strategies or opinions.
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    Oct 26, 2012 11:28:20 AM
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    Edited by Phil-101 on Oct 26, 2012 at 12:07:13 PM
    1. Ok, clearly wingrider does not understand what is right and what is wrong.  I do not understand his/her continuing to blather on about, if you do not even open or read a text, you agree to buy something.  WR seems to think that doing nothing is agreeing to something.  Just because some hoodlum knows my phone number, does NOT give them permission to charge me.  YOU are wrong, no matter how many times you repeat yourself.  Just because AT&T allows it, does not make it right.  It makes AT&T appear to be in collusion with the perpetrators of the crimes. Now, we all understand that we can make a time consuming phone call to customer service to ASK AT&T to do something it should have done in the beginning.  We, who are paying AT&T rather large monthly payments already, do not appreciate your company's requirements to ask for a special service for them to do what they should be doing already.


      [Please keep it courteous]

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 11:59:10 AM
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    BCE777 wrote:
    1. Ok, clearly wingrider does not understand what is right and what is wrong.  I do not understand his/her continuing to blather on about, if you do not even open or read a text, you agree to buy something.  WR seems to think that doing nothing is agreeing to something.  Just because some hoodlum knows my phone number, does NOT give them permission to charge me.  YOU are wrong, no matter how many times you repeat yourself.  Just because AT&T allows it, does not make it right.  It makes AT&T appear to be in collusion with the perpetrators of the crimes. Now, we all understand that we can make a time consuming phone call to customer service to ASK AT&T to do something it should have done in the beginning.  We, who are paying AT&T rather large monthly payments already, do not appreciate your company's requirements to ask for a special service for them to do what they should be doing already.

    full understand here, the issue is contractual, just because decide it is beneath yout stature to actually read teh terms and conditions of any binding agreement does not mean you are not responsible for them, no one fault but your own, no one else to blame. I understand contracts, terms and conditions, binding agreements and fair use policy. Never sign or agree to anything without full reading and understanding it

    .

    ATT is not my company, nor do I work for them,  I own and run a very successful business,  To the best of my knowledge you have never ben nor probably never be one of my customers. As far as "we who are paying att a rather large monthly payments"  - want to bet?

     

    Words to live by in a situation like that TANSTAAFL, There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch - if it has the word "free" in it, then you can bet it has conditions and charges associated with taking advantage of the "FREE" offer

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 12:43:43 PM
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    Edited by Phil-101 on Oct 26, 2012 at 12:53:32 PM

    Wingrider, I'm not goimg to continue to argue this point.  The practice is wrong and you know it.  Your logic flawed and you are being argumentative for the sake of being arguementative. 

    You show me where it is written in any at&t terms or disclosures that they can bill you without your knowledge.  Show me where it says they can send customers a text message saying that unless you reply back stop, that they can start billing customers $9.99 or any amount.

     

    So let's see it.  Oh, you can't produce it?  Ya, I though so, because it doesn't exist.

     

    [Please keep it courteous]

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 4:37:54 PM
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    Edited by Phil-101 on Oct 26, 2012 at 4:39:22 PM

    Wingrider  still does not understand the issue.  He STILL thinks we ASKED  for something for free.   We.  Never.  Even.  Opened. A. Text.     AT&T.    Is .   Claiming.   That.  Just. Because. Someone. Sends. You. A. Text. You. Have. To.  Buy. What. They. Are. Selling.   AT&T will even do their billing for them!!!

     

    [Edited to comply with Guidelines]

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 6:13:24 PM
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    you can go to the following link to Manage any and all Mobile Purchases charged to your line of service, all carriers do the billing for those 3rd party companies not just AT&T. https://cingular-oac.qpass.com/oac/html/signin.do

    Knight Rider Rules.gif


    AT&T's return policy has changed effective 10/07/12.  You have 14 days to return the device & cxl without a ETF.  Policy info HERE.



    Where is Justin Timberlake when you need him?. I need him to billed me a bridge to get a cross all these tears from complainers.This post is protected under the laws of the United States & other Countries. Unauthorized duplication, Distribution may result in civil liability & criminal prosecution.The OP gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of: The mods, Fellow forumites, Canada, The United States Of America, Mexico, USVI & Europe. As well as James Bond.

    When the going gets rough, hide in a pillow fort and pretend you don't exist.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 6:40:45 PM
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    PorterRanch wrote:

    Wingrider, I'm not goimg to continue to argue this point.  The practice is wrong and you know it.  Your logic flawed and you are being argumentative for the sake of being arguementative. 

    You show me where it is written in any at&t terms or disclosures that they can bill you without your knowledge.  Show me where it says they can send customers a text message saying that unless you reply back stop, that they can start billing customers $9.99 or any amount.

     

    So let's see it.  Oh, you can't produce it?  Ya, I though so, because it doesn't exist.

     

    [Please keep it courteous]


    you mean these

     

    http://www.wireless.att.com/learn/articles-resources/wireless-terms.jsp

     

    read through the entire set of clicks, it is there

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    Oct 26, 2012 6:45:57 PM
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    Wingrider, no you find it and post it.   Don't dance around this.  

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 8:48:36 PM
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    PorterRanch wrote:

    Wingrider, no you find it and post it.   Don't dance around this.  


    He is not, you are, the info is there, you dont want to search for it, thats is your problem not his. I feel unlazy at this time, here is your research for you.

     

    6.5 Text, Instant Messaging And Picture/Video Messaging

         Premium text and picture/video messages are charged at their stated rates

     

    6.2 What Are The Intended Purposes Of The Wireless Data Service?

         Permitted Activities. AT&T's wireless data services are intended to be used for the following permitted activities: (i) web browsing; (ii) email; and (iii) intranet access if permitted by your rate plan (for example, access to corporate intranets, email, and individual productivity applications like customer relationship management, sales force, and field service automation); (d) uploading and downloading applications and content to and from the Internet or third-party application stores, and (e) using applications and content without excessively contributing to network congestion.

    You agree to use AT&T's wireless data services only for these permitted activities.

     

    3.3 What Information, Content, And Applications Are Provided By Third Parties?

         3.3     What Information, Content, And Applications Are Provided By Third Parties?

    Certain information, applications, or other content is provided by independently owned and operated content providers or service providers who are subject to change at any time without notice.

    AT&T IS NOT A PUBLISHER OF THIRD-PARTY INFORMATION, APPLICATIONS, OR OTHER CONTENT AND IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY OPINIONS, ADVICE, STATEMENTS, OR OTHER INFORMATION, SERVICES OR GOODS PROVIDED BY THIRD PARTIES.

    Third-party content or service providers may impose additional charges. Policies regarding intellectual property, privacy and other policies or terms of use may differ among AT&T's content or service providers and you are bound by such policies or terms when you visit their respective sites or use their services. It is your responsibility to read the rules or service agreements of each content provider or service provider.

    Any information you involuntarily or voluntarily provide to third parties is governed by their policies or terms. The accuracy, appropriateness, content, completeness, timeliness, usefulness, security, safety, merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, transmission or correct sequencing of any application, information or downloaded data is not guaranteed or warranted by AT&T or any content providers or other third party. Delays or omissions may occur. Neither AT&T nor its content providers, service providers or other third parties shall be liable to you for any loss or injury arising out of or caused, in whole or in part, by your use of any information, application or content, or any information, application, or other content acquired through the Service.

    You acknowledge that every business or personal decision, to some degree or another, represents an assumption of risk, and that neither AT&T nor its content and service providers or suppliers, in providing information, applications or other content or services, or access to information, applications, or other content underwrites, can underwrite, or assumes your risk in any manner whatsoever.

     

    Originating Information Source

     


    Knight Rider Rules.gif


    AT&T's return policy has changed effective 10/07/12.  You have 14 days to return the device & cxl without a ETF.  Policy info HERE.



    Where is Justin Timberlake when you need him?. I need him to billed me a bridge to get a cross all these tears from complainers.This post is protected under the laws of the United States & other Countries. Unauthorized duplication, Distribution may result in civil liability & criminal prosecution.The OP gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of: The mods, Fellow forumites, Canada, The United States Of America, Mexico, USVI & Europe. As well as James Bond.

    When the going gets rough, hide in a pillow fort and pretend you don't exist.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 9:05:35 PM
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    Edited by Phil-101 on Oct 26, 2012 at 9:12:04 PM

     

     

    So where is the part about charging customers for unsolicited fees without their consent.

     

     

    [Please keep it courteous]

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 9:19:49 PM
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    Actually all the information posted above is in regards to that with the link to the source information to back up that the information is true and not falsified. but then again I felt unlazy to read and post the information that Wingrider was unlazy to post the link to originally.

    Knight Rider Rules.gif


    AT&T's return policy has changed effective 10/07/12.  You have 14 days to return the device & cxl without a ETF.  Policy info HERE.



    Where is Justin Timberlake when you need him?. I need him to billed me a bridge to get a cross all these tears from complainers.This post is protected under the laws of the United States & other Countries. Unauthorized duplication, Distribution may result in civil liability & criminal prosecution.The OP gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of: The mods, Fellow forumites, Canada, The United States Of America, Mexico, USVI & Europe. As well as James Bond.

    When the going gets rough, hide in a pillow fort and pretend you don't exist.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 9:20:02 PM
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    It's not there.  I still cannot believe anyone would defend this practice.  It is absurd.

     

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 9:23:52 PM
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    maybe after a good nights sleep you may be able to see it better then.

    Knight Rider Rules.gif


    AT&T's return policy has changed effective 10/07/12.  You have 14 days to return the device & cxl without a ETF.  Policy info HERE.



    Where is Justin Timberlake when you need him?. I need him to billed me a bridge to get a cross all these tears from complainers.This post is protected under the laws of the United States & other Countries. Unauthorized duplication, Distribution may result in civil liability & criminal prosecution.The OP gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of: The mods, Fellow forumites, Canada, The United States Of America, Mexico, USVI & Europe. As well as James Bond.

    When the going gets rough, hide in a pillow fort and pretend you don't exist.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 26, 2012 9:38:31 PM
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    Actually, section 6.5 seems to specifically prohibit the very messages that are creating this problem!!!

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 27, 2012 1:29:33 AM
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    Unfortunately it actually does not, he sites do not obtain the numbers on their own, the numbers are provided to them on use for use (turn by turn) basis and the messages are sent out as confirmation of that use with their site, unfortunately it does not require the actual owner/user of the phone to be the one to input the number.

    Knight Rider Rules.gif


    AT&T's return policy has changed effective 10/07/12.  You have 14 days to return the device & cxl without a ETF.  Policy info HERE.



    Where is Justin Timberlake when you need him?. I need him to billed me a bridge to get a cross all these tears from complainers.This post is protected under the laws of the United States & other Countries. Unauthorized duplication, Distribution may result in civil liability & criminal prosecution.The OP gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of: The mods, Fellow forumites, Canada, The United States Of America, Mexico, USVI & Europe. As well as James Bond.

    When the going gets rough, hide in a pillow fort and pretend you don't exist.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 29, 2012 12:04:44 PM
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    I actually signed up here just for this.  I've also had some charges that I didn't sign up for.  at&t took them off but I didn't get the warm and fuzzy that it won't happen again.

     

    If I'm reading this thread right, are some of you defending this practice from at&t?  What am I missing?

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Oct 29, 2012 12:19:22 PM
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    Edited by jamileh on Oct 29, 2012 at 12:20:28 PM

    Hey folks, 

     

    There's a lot of heated discussion around this and I want to step in with a couple key points. 

     

    First and foremost - these forums are here to help. I know topics like this can get people frustrated and heated but this is a community of peers and courtesy is imperative. Please keep in mind that everyone here is here to help or to get help. This is not a place for name calling and nastiness. 

     

    Secondly - Scammers like those talked about in this thread typically use confusing jargon and sneaky tactics to get you signed up for their service. 

     

    The best defense you have against these companies is to make sure that purchase blocker is applied to each phone line. This is a free service and will not allow 3rd party purchases to be made against your account; regardless of if you (or a family member) accidentally agree to terms and conditions from these companies. 

     

    Here is a post from earlier this year that provides more information about purchase blocker and how to prevent 3rd party charges: http://forums.att.com/t5/Wireless-Billing/3rd-Party-Subscriptions-amp-Purchase-Blocker/td-p/3095123

    --------------

    As of May 1st, I am no longer serving as the Community Manager for AT&T. This account will no longer be able to accept private messages. If you have an account related issue, please send a private message to ATTCustomerCare.

    Did a post have a solution that worked for you? Help other people find solutions faster by marking posts that helped you as an "Accepted Solution". Learn about accepted solutions here.

    I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent AT&T’s position, strategies or opinions.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Nov 3, 2012 6:25:35 AM
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    My best advice is to drop the archaic form of communication known as SMS/MMS.  Use your wallet to speak to AT&T and others of its ilk.  If you have a smartphone it is almost entirely redundant to have that form of communication.  I personally have SMS/MMS features on my line blocked, I do not have any desire to pay for an unneeded service.  

     

    Google Voice is a great alternative.  I use it as a secondary number and provide it to persons that I may not want contacting me directly on my wireless phone number.  I also use it to send/receive text messages.  Visual voice mail (transcribed) and easily accessible through the application is also an amazing benefit.  There are some limitations, but it has met my needs.

     

    It is a sad state throughout the service provider industry, their business models are designed to make profits from its customers. They rarely put out more than minimal effort in providing those services to the satisfaction of the customer.  

     

    In direct response to this discussion the key part of the agreement terms is the following:

     

    "Any information you involuntarily or voluntarily provide to third parties is governed by their policies or terms."

     

    The above and prior related responses, from the ACE - Grand Master and ACE - Professor, to me are prime examples of the great divide seen between customer and business.  That single sentence, comes across as uncaring and lazy, shrugging off all responsibilty to the customer, despite the wireless provider being the medium with which part of this "billing process" takes place.

     

    A real world example of this would be somewhat similar to a local business having a customer "tab", but not requiring any ID to use it.  Some anonymous person could come into the place of business request a service or product and just say put it on my "tab" by only providing a name (phone number).  As a customer I would out right refuse to have any association with a business with such an obvious security flaw.  

     

    Services and features that potentially could have a cost risk, be it financial or personal information, should be automatically opt-out.  Social media is a perfect example of how bad it can get, with nearly all options to share personal information having an automatic opt-in.  A person should not have to research or wait until the worst case happens to discover that there was an undesirable service/feature that has cost them privacy or financial loss.  

     

    It should be, I am buying what I see in front of me and not a presentation of pretty fluff on the outside and deadly spores hidden in the small print.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Nov 3, 2012 8:01:06 AM
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    Edited by wingrider01 on Nov 3, 2012 at 8:03:32 AM

    clonalvex wrote:

    My best advice is to drop the archaic form of communication known as SMS/MMS.  Use your wallet to speak to AT&T and others of its ilk.  If you have a smartphone it is almost entirely redundant to have that form of communication.  I personally have SMS/MMS features on my line blocked, I do not have any desire to pay for an unneeded service.  

     

    Google Voice is a great alternative.  I use it as a secondary number and provide it to persons that I may not want contacting me directly on my wireless phone number.  I also use it to send/receive text messages.  Visual voice mail (transcribed) and easily accessible through the application is also an amazing benefit.  There are some limitations, but it has met my needs.

     

    It is a sad state throughout the service provider industry, their business models are designed to make profits from its customers. They rarely put out more than minimal effort in providing those services to the satisfaction of the customer.  

     

    In direct response to this discussion the key part of the agreement terms is the following:

     

    "Any information you involuntarily or voluntarily provide to third parties is governed by their policies or terms."

     

    The above and prior related responses, from the ACE - Grand Master and ACE - Professor, to me are prime examples of the great divide seen between customer and business.  That single sentence, comes across as uncaring and lazy, shrugging off all responsibilty to the customer, despite the wireless provider being the medium with which part of this "billing process" takes place.

     

    A real world example of this would be somewhat similar to a local business having a customer "tab", but not requiring any ID to use it.  Some anonymous person could come into the place of business request a service or product and just say put it on my "tab" by only providing a name (phone number).  As a customer I would out right refuse to have any association with a business with such an obvious security flaw.  

     

    Services and features that potentially could have a cost risk, be it financial or personal information, should be automatically opt-out.  Social media is a perfect example of how bad it can get, with nearly all options to share personal information having an automatic opt-in.  A person should not have to research or wait until the worst case happens to discover that there was an undesirable service/feature that has cost them privacy or financial loss.  

     

    It should be, I am buying what I see in front of me and not a presentation of pretty fluff on the outside and deadly spores hidden in the small print.


    Really - you might wnt to check your "facts" SMS messaging is at a all time high with all the social sites around, currently estimated at a 142 BILLION sms/mms message sent a year  and that is only numbers for the US - does not seem to be as "archaic" as you assume.

    Bottom line - read each and every line of the terms of service that the "free" sites send you when you download that "free" wallpaper, ringtone or picture, or take that "free" quiz on the social media sites, those swarmy companies use a multitude of tricks and word games to get you to agree to the charges, some even word it so that if don't respond to the terms you agree to teh charges.

     

    It is no one's fault but the end user if they don;t read what they are agreeing to before they try to get something for nothing - TANSTAAFL - There ain;t no such thing as a free lunch. If the offer or "freebie" looks to good to be true - it probably is and there are hidden catches in the terms.

     

    Call att or what ever carrier you use and request the free purchase block on the line, be pro-active instead of reactive. Sorry but it is not a "It is a sad state throughout the service provider industry, their business models are designed to make profits from its customers." - that is the business model of any for profit company, I don;t run my business as a charity, I run it to make money for myself and to be able to pay my employees, this is not jjust in the carrier provider business model, but it is universal in every business model in the universe - we are not in it for the warm fuzzy feeling and the "fun" of running a business. We are in it to make money.

     

    the test that is int he agreement - aka  involuntarily is in there to cover a companies options when the end user decides NOT to read and understand what they are seeing, aka the majority of people that try to grab the "free" item or anser the innocent quiz

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Nov 3, 2012 7:11:02 PM
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    wingrider01 wrote:

    Really - you might wnt to check your "facts" SMS messaging is at a all time high with all the social sites around, currently estimated at a 142 BILLION sms/mms message sent a year  and that is only numbers for the US - does not seem to be as "archaic" as you assume.

    Bottom line - read each and every line of the terms of service that the "free" sites send you when you download that "free" wallpaper, ringtone or picture, or take that "free" quiz on the social media sites, those swarmy companies use a multitude of tricks and word games to get you to agree to the charges, some even word it so that if don't respond to the terms you agree to teh charges.

    It is no one's fault but the end user if they don;t read what they are agreeing to before they try to get something for nothing - TANSTAAFL - There ain;t no such thing as a free lunch. If the offer or "freebie" looks to good to be true - it probably is and there are hidden catches in the terms.

    Call att or what ever carrier you use and request the free purchase block on the line, be pro-active instead of reactive. Sorry but it is not a "It is a sad state throughout the service provider industry, their business models are designed to make profits from its customers." - that is the business model of any for profit company, I don;t run my business as a charity, I run it to make money for myself and to be able to pay my employees, this is not jjust in the carrier provider business model, but it is universal in every business model in the universe - we are not in it for the warm fuzzy feeling and the "fun" of running a business. We are in it to make money.

    the test that is int he agreement - aka  involuntarily is in there to cover a companies options when the end user decides NOT to read and understand what they are seeing, aka the majority of people that try to grab the "free" item or anser the innocent quiz


    In the context of my post, I do not see where I claimed to be presenting any "facts".  As in your signature, my post is purely my opinion that I am sharing from my perspective and experience.

     

    SMS messaging is not "archaic" in its purpose, of which is communication.  Rather it is an antiquated mess when it comes to functionality at the user end.  When I first experienced issues with receiving unsolicited text messages, it was on a pay per message fee system.  As a consumer that is highly concious of unnecessary financial costs, this greatly disturbed me.  At the time (and I am not aware that if it has changed or not, because I don't use it) text messages were auto-retrieved with no option to look at what is available (inbox - web based email).  All messages are retrieved regardless of who sent them.  So I was unable to visually filter out unsolicited messages, before incurring the cost of any message of being marked as received by the wireless provider.  This quickly led me on a course to disregard text messaging as a useful form of communication, if there was going to be a continuous potential for financial cost or need to micromanage everything I did on that medium.  Of course decent service providers no longer charge for incoming messages (even better ones don't count incoming calls).

     

    With smartphones, there are so many alternative forms of communication.  I barely have a need to even make calls, maybe averaging 30-40 minutes a month of my family plan.  Which is the second part of why SMS is "archaic", the pricing model.  Why is it such simple form of communication costs so much?  Is there truly such a great burden on the service provider to support this function?  If so, then this would lead me to believe that how SMS operates is highly inefficient, as it is only transporting very small packages of "data".  Yes I did mention "data", why has there been no advancement in this form of communication that would allow it to be calculated into the data usage of the customer?

     

    Lastly my key purpose in highlighting "involuntarily", was to point at the obvious issue that there exists entities who have malicious intent to use such a billing process to steal.  I am not sure if anywhere in your responses did you acknowledge a true understanding of some of posters concerns, "They did not voluntarily nor with any intent access or provide any information to a third party, with which a binding agreement is formed to charge a fee for a service or product via this form billing."

     

    This scenario should not even occur. As, I have stated a premium function of billing third party services/products via this method, should be a delibarate request from the customer to the service provider.  The customer should not have to request an additional feature, regardless of it being at no cost, to block this purchase functionality.  When subscribing to a service, only what is the basic functionality of that service should be provided, any special functionality should have a choice to opt-in.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Dec 4, 2012 3:32:19 PM
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    Why do we have to ASK For the purchase blocker? Why can't AT&T proactively address a situation that they are facilitating that impacts THOUSANDS of their customers.  I have been surfing the net all day and have found literally thousands of complaints about this phenomenon. Yet, when I called Customer Service AND got escalated to a manager she claimed she had never heard of anyone havingf this issue.  REDICULOUS. 

     

     Kudso to AT&T for creating a free purchase blocker service to help customers avoid this. SHAME ON THEM for not properly educating their customers about this peril, providing the service proactively to their customers which would avoid the situation entirely and/or helping to identify and cut ties with companies that perpetuate this shameless revenue stream of which I am certain AT&T gets a cut.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 2, 2013 6:56:22 PM
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    Exactly!

     

    I just discovered possibly 15 months of charges by these crammers. I usually pay my bill with the convenient iPhone app, so didn't notice anything awry until I looked at the paper bill today. My wife had been complaining about annoying spam text messages, but I had no idea we were being charged for them. 

     

    Well, after several calls, and a wide variety of differing information, I was finally told I would be credited for a month. Then two months. Nothing more, according to AT&T reps, could be done—I'm out hundreds of dollars. 

     

    Neither my wife or I EVER opted into any of the garbage she was charged for. When she would see a spam message, she would delete it. That should be ALL that is required for anyone. 

     

    I asked if AT&T ever investigated the 3rd party companies it deals with. Nope. Repeatedly, I was told there is nothing—nada—AT&T can do to dump or otherwise ban the many notorious crammer companies (and all it takes is 5 minutes on the web to document their sleazy, and illegal, tactics). Really? Somehow a huge corporation like AT&T can't take the time to vet sleazy companies with documented unethical and illegal tactics from using AT&T's NETWORK to prey upon its customers? You'll have to pardon me if I refuse to believe that. And I find it interesting that the crammer charges are listed as "AT&T Monthy Subscriptions" on my bill. Not "Third Party Subscriptions" but "AT&T Monthly Subscriptions." Which is probably one of the reasons I skimmed over them in the past. Hmmm.

     

    Now think about this—I'm probably typical of many customers who pay online or who fail to scrutinize every item in their bill (a mistake I will *never* make again, obviously). So I have many months of charges, at $30/month, that I have paid to AT&T—charges I did not agree to, sign up for, or authorize. But AT&T now refuses to reimburse me for the money stolen (let's not mince words) by predatory, lying, sleazy companies using AT&T's network AND billing system. So, what does that mean? It means AT&T is keeping my money. There's no simpler way to put it. 

     

    I'd like to refer everyone to this article:

    http://columbiachronicle.com/cellphone-bills-new-frontier-for-fraud/

     

    Here's the conclusion of John Breyault, vice president of public policy, telecommunications and fraud for the National Consumers League:

     

    Although many customers are charged for services they have not purchased, wireless service providers do not seek to end the practice because they also profit from it, according to Breyault.

     

    “Unfortunately, all three of the players have a financial interest in making sure that the system continues as it is because they all get a cut of what consumers pay,” Breyault said.

     

    Isn't that interesting? 

     

    So, sorry for anyone defending the behavior of AT&T in regards to these predatory crammers using AT&T's network and billing system—this absolutely stinks, and I have contacted the FCC, FTC, my state's attorney general's office, and a legal firm. This is not how a world-class telecommunications company should treat its customers (and I've been with AT&T for years, with multiple iPhones and iPads). No, this is a textbook example of how a company alienates and loses its customers. If I don't get a decent resolution—and more importantly, if I don't see some action taken against 3rd party sleazebag crammers—I will close my account and encourage everyone I know to do the same. 

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 2, 2013 8:55:33 PM
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    I also must add I was insulted when an AT&T rep told me I or my wife must have opted in to the crammer's service. That ABSOLUTELY is not the case. If I or my wife receive a spam email and charges start appearing on my bill—despite the fact that neither of us did anything other than delete the spam—that is NOT in any way agreeing to the spammer/crammer's invitation. Period. AT&T should actively and aggressively target any 3rd party that says otherwise. I can't understand how anyone can think I'm "opting in" to paying someone just because they send me an unwanted message and demand I reply "stop" or do anything other than delete their unwanted intrusion.

    It's time for AT&T to do the right thing and eliminate 3rd party billing unless a customer OPTS-IN, not the other way around... and to aggressively purge any company caught cramming. Otherwise AT&T cannot complain if people (like myself) assume that the money made from association with crammers is more important than protecting customers from predatory thieves.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 3, 2013 8:04:00 AM
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    Former Community Manager

    I am sorry that you had this experience and I appreciate your very thorough feedback. 

     

    I'm going to pass your thoughts on to some other folks because I think you'd captured the concerns other people have expressed in a very concise way. 

    --------------

    As of May 1st, I am no longer serving as the Community Manager for AT&T. This account will no longer be able to accept private messages. If you have an account related issue, please send a private message to ATTCustomerCare.

    Did a post have a solution that worked for you? Help other people find solutions faster by marking posts that helped you as an "Accepted Solution". Learn about accepted solutions here.

    I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent AT&T’s position, strategies or opinions.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 3, 2013 9:03:57 AM
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    Interesting reading on this - the carriers do give the opt out for 3rd party billing

     

    http://newsroom-magazine.com/2012/government-agencies/federal-trade-commission/ftc-formally-recommends-fcc-award-option-to-block-all-third-party-charges-to-wireless-customers/

     

    http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2012/07/ftc-wireless-phone-bill-cramming-is-significant-consumer-problem.html

     

    Anotehr point, if you block 3rd party billing it should also block purcahses from googleplay or what ever android is using for it's app delivery method

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 3, 2013 10:34:40 AM
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    Agreed, Michael. Many people here have been making the same point. It is indeed pleasing to see that @jamileh read and appeared to appreciate your post.

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 3, 2013 11:37:32 AM
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    Edited by michaelmhughes on Jan 3, 2013 at 11:39:24 AM

    Thank you, Jamileh. I appreciate your assistance. I've been very happy with AT&T for the many years I've been with them (since I bought my first iPhone). This is the first time I've ever had an issue. I hope it can be resolved quickly. But even more importantly, I hope this might get the company to address the cramming issue and aggressively disassociate itself from these disreputable thieves. 

     

    Thanks again. 

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Jan 4, 2013 11:37:40 AM
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    michaelmhughes wrote:

    Thank you, Jamileh. I appreciate your assistance. I've been very happy with AT&T for the many years I've been with them (since I bought my first iPhone). This is the first time I've ever had an issue. I hope it can be resolved quickly. But even more importantly, I hope this might get the company to address the cramming issue and aggressively disassociate itself from these disreputable thieves. 

     

    Thanks again. 


    The company may work at it, but to effectively fight it would have to done at the FCC level, federal goverment nad other controlling entities - something like a do not call list and even then it would not be 100 percent effective.

     

    Sad fact that it if it is tried to be stopped by preventing at the company name level, sending phone number / short code, DNS resolver it takes about an hour to setup a new LLC without the assistance of professional services, 10 miniutes or so to change the phone number, less if the company buys a DID block of a couple hundred phone numbers, dns can be changed in about 24 hous, register a new domain name at someplace like godaddy.com, submit to the new name to thedns provider and it is a new location, ip addresses can easily be spoofed or made anonomous with inexpensive software to connecting though one of the online services that provide this

     

    the easiest way would be if the fcc changes the requirement of providing a method to stop pruchases by putting a purchase block on the number to automaticly setting up the purchase block and requiring a email to the carrier to have it removed. ATT, Sprint, Verizon and every other carrier in the US complies to the FCC ruling about providing a method to prevent purchases, right now you as the customer have to call them and request it being turned on - and this is no charge to you, just the time for the phone call

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    May 4, 2013 10:04:50 PM
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    Edited by Taylarie on May 5, 2013 at 7:21:39 AM

     

     

    I was doing yardwork this afternoon, and in my pocket was my (very) old W580i, on which I have never made a purchase. I had also disabled the MediaNET button LONG ago, my phone is to be used as a phone...not a web device. And after having not used my phone all day, I suddenly received a text message stating that my subscription purchase for Snap for Mobile was successful.

     

    I didn't authorize {word filter evasion}. I didn't even use the *** phone for anything other than six voice calls and four TXTs over the previous five days.

     

    Sensing a scam, I almost immediately signed into my account on my desktop machine and went to Manage My Mobile Purchases. Sure enough, a $10.94 charge had been added to my account. Using AT&T's website, I tried to get the charges off my account...and it was immediately denied, literally one second after I clicked the Submit button (20MB broadband brings you bad news...FASTER). Yes, I called and got it reversed, and yes I put a block on purchases. Not that I should have had to do that, mind you...

     

    Stop telling people that THEY made some sort of mistake. {keep it courteous}

     

    mobile.png

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    May 5, 2013 1:45:23 AM
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    Edited by Taylarie on May 5, 2013 at 7:25:58 AM

    rogerch wrote:

     

     

    I was doing yardwork this afternoon, and in my pocket was my (very) old W580i, on which I have never made a purchase. I had also disabled the MediaNET button LONG ago, my phone is to be used as a phone...not a web device. And after having not used my phone all day, I suddenly received a text message stating that my subscription purchase for Snap for Mobile was successful.

     

    I didn't authorize {word filter evasion}. I didn't even use the *** phone for anything other than six voice calls and four TXTs over the previous five days.

     

    Sensing a scam, I almost immediately signed into my account on my desktop machine and went to Manage My Mobile Purchases. Sure enough, a $10.94 charge had been added to my account. Using AT&T's website, I tried to get the charges off my account...and it was immediately denied, literally one second after I clicked the Submit button (20MB broadband brings you bad news...FASTER). Yes, I called and got it reversed, and yes I put a block on purchases. Not that I should have had to do that, mind you...

     

    Stop telling people that THEY made some sort of mistame. {keep it courteous}

     

    mobile.png


    Thinly hidden vulgarity gets you nowhere, it just trivializes your end of the discussion.

    You need to understand how theses places work - they can use a simple fact of "you did not respond with stop or end so you authorize it"

     

    You took the personal responsibility to handle the issue by placing a purchase block, that was the correct step. Now it won't happen again.

     

    Not sure where you are coming from with your attacks and claims of "long lengthy employement" (not that I could care) since this is your first post I have never responded to anything from you - unless you have another id on the forum. Nor am I concerned of your opinion on me. Bottom line, this happens the majority of the time through a "free" download, or taking a "free" intelligenece quiz on one of the social sites.

     

    Thinly hidden vulgarity, name calling and bypassing a forum filter does nothing to prove or show the validity of a post, while I am really happy that you have 20mb internet pipe, that is kind of slow given the 1GB pipe available via Google fiber or the 100 MB pipe available via a cable carrier - although I do confess I am confused as to why this had to be part of the reponse, same as with your employment length.

     

    Happy for you that you got it taken care of, with the purchase block in place you can be certain that any future charges placed on your mobile phone bill where specificly authorized by you.

     

    Have a good day today and a better day tomorrow. Y'all be safe out there now.

     

    Re: At&t let a third party charge me $9.99 without my consent

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    Sep 28, 2013 9:58:55 AM
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    Voyager

    The same thing happened to me. I canceled it and received credit but the charge is right back on my phone. That is the smallest reason that i am canceling my service as soon as possible.

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