The Federal Communications Commission has fined six companies a combined $30 million for deceptively marketing prepaid calling cards. The FCC found that the companies falsely advertised that their low-cost prepaid calling cards could allow consumers far more calling minutes than were in fact being sold.
The FCC press release explains that "[t]he companies targeted advertising to immigrant consumers promising that the prepaid calling cards, which cost only a few dollars, could be used for hundreds or thousands of minutes in international phone calls. In fact, for that price, the consumers would be able to use only a fraction of the promised minutes due to the companies’ assessment of multiple fees and surcharges that were not clearly and conspicuously disclosed to consumers."
Fined $5 million each, the six companies are Locus Telecommunications, Inc.; Lyca Tel, LLC; NobelTel, LLC; Simple Network, Inc.; STi Telecom Inc.; and Touch-Tel USA, LLC.
The FCC's press release is here.