Technology

FCC plans to fine Sprint $105 million for billing phone customers for unwanted services

Sprint is the latest company facing penalties for billing phone customers for unauthorized services.
Sprint is the latest company facing penalties for billing phone customers for unauthorized services. The Kansas City Star

Regulators plan to fine Sprint $105 million for billing phone customers for unwanted services, including horoscopes, in the latest U.S. action against a large carrier for cramming.

The penalty against the third-largest U.S. mobile provider was proposed by Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler, said two agency officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the action hadn’t been announced. The five agency commissioners must vote on the proposed fine.

Kim Hart, an FCC spokeswoman, declined to comment. Jeffrey Silva, a spokesman for Overland Park-based Sprint, said Tuesday that the company doesn’t comment on “rumor and speculation.”

AT&T agreed to pay $105 million in October to resolve charges it bills customers millions of dollars for unauthorized third-party subscriptions and horoscopes, ring tones and love tips.

The Federal Trade Commission in July sued the fourth-largest U.S. wireless carrier, T-Mobile US, over similar claims. The company is in talks to settle the case.

At an Oct. 8 news conference discussing AT&T’s penalty, Wheeler said there are “a lot of other carriers involved.”

  Comments