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Brandon Matthews (pseudonym) is the founder of, which was borne of his desire to help retail investors after witnessing the continually changing ways that Wall Street can cheat them. Brandon has worked for Monroe Parker Investment Bankers, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, American... More
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  • Verizon Wireless Blames Terminally Ill Customer For False Charges: Refuses To Cancel 0 comments
    Nov 23, 2010 12:21 PM | about stocks: VZ

    I called Verizon on behalf of my terminally ill aunt today, after speaking with their customer service this past weekend and being told to call back during the week, to speak with the company's fraud department. The rep I spoke with explained that it appeared the phone had been cloned, as there were multiple calls received that originated from Toronto, Canada.

    The result of these calls was an astronomical bill that approached $800.00. A google search of the number ties it to some sort of embezzlement scheme originating out of Toronto. The fraud specialist at verizon explained to me that because they show that these calls were received by the phone, it is not their problem.

    He explained that I would have to seek third party assistance, such as retaining the services of a lawyer to dispute the charges, or contacting the Better Business Bureau.

    When I suggested instead that we will just pay the bill and cancel the line, and take our business elsewhere, the fraud specialist said he would gladly transfer the call to the appropriate department, yet then went on to explain how it is the responsibility of customers including this terminally ill patient, to monitor usage to avoid these issues.

    I asked how monitoring these issues would help in light of the fact that Verizon could simply charge a customer for calls that were never sent or received and his only suggested option was to seek remedy elsewhere. He stated that it wasnt really an issue, as only 300 minutes were billed, yet the statement indicates 1200 minutes worth of charges.
    Again, I asked him to cancel the line. He proceeded to deflect responsibility again to the phone user, insisting that usage should be monitored by individual customers. At that point, I got angry and a little tired of this gentlemen telling me that getting upset was not going to help. I again asked to be transferred to the cancellation department. Again, he began talking in a deflective manner.
    I then told him in no uncertain terms to stop talking (explative!) and transfer me. At this point he refused, and stated " that's not going to happen."

    If this is indicative of Verizon's policies, the option for the company stock as far as I'm concerned is to sell it. As more and more customers learn of these issues, cancellations will spike. I will be putting my Droid-X for sale on E-bay this afternoon, and visiting a T-Mobile dealer.

    So all this based on a single experience? Hardly. Google searches reveal a very troublesome trend. In fact, there are 236,000 results for "verizon s^&ks" and 279,000 for "hate verizon," most of which seem centered on customer service experiences.

    No positions, although I'm seriously considering shorting VZ right now.


    Disclosure: No Positions
    Stocks: VZ
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