WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar today pressed officials from the wireless industry to allow cell phone unlocking and fight cell phone cramming at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing. Klobuchar urged wireless industry experts to let consumers switch carriers while keeping their phones and protect customers from “cramming”, which is when third parties place unauthorized, misleading, or deceptive charges on phone bills. Earlier this year, Klobuchar introduced legislation directing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to require carriers to unlock cell phones for consumers and has fought to prevent cramming on landline and cell phone bills.
“As more and more consumers depend on mobile devices to stay in touch with their families, friends, and businesses, it’s more important than ever that we give families and businesses choices and fight against unfair billing practices,” Klobuchar said.“That’s why I’ve pushed to allow consumers to unlock their phones and fought to end cramming on phone bills, and I will continue to work to give consumers the flexibility and security they need and deserve.”
Klobuchar is a member of the Senate Commerce Committee and has been a leader in standing up for consumers and boosting competition. Earlier this year she introduced bipartisan legislation – the Wireless Consumer Choice Act—directing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take action to ensure that consumers have the right to unlock their phone. Klobuchar has also fought to protect consumers from unauthorized charges on their wireless bills. Klobuchar successfully pushed Verizon, AT&T and CenturyLink to stop cramming charges on landline phone bills, and after Klobuchar urged officials to crack down on cell phone cramming, the FTC took enforcement action against Wise Media, LLC earlier this year. Last year, Klobuchar also cosponsored legislation that would ban most third-party charges on landline phones and direct the FCC to create rules protecting consumers from cell phone cramming.