AT&T Unlimited Data Customers Getting Refunds

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by Alvaro Puig
Consumer Education Specialist, FTC

You might have heard that AT&T agreed to return $60 million to customers for allegedly reducing the data speed on their unlimited data plans without telling them.

In its 2014 complaint, the FTC said that AT&T’s practice of data throttling – slowing down the data speed for unlimited customers who used large amounts of data – was unfair and deceptive. It was unfair because AT&T promised unlimited data, but didn’t give customers the data they paid for. And it was deceptive because AT&T didn’t tell customers it was reducing their data speed, says the FTC.

Customers who pay for unlimited mobile data have a right to expect to get unlimited data. If the company will slow down the data speed for users who exceed a data cap, it must tell customers it’s going to do that.

After the court approves the settlement, the money will be distributed to AT&T customers who signed up for an unlimited data plan before 2011 and were affected by the data throttling. Customers do not have to do anything to get their portion of the settlement: current customers will get a credit on a future bill and former customers will get a check in the mail.