It is called Third Party Billing. If you search the forum under that term you'll find many other posts. You best bet is to contact Verizon:
and have a block put on your phone.
How To Cancel or Stop Billing From Enhanced Services Billing, Inc. a/k/a ESBI a/k/a Billing Concepts | BSG Billing Services Group:
ESBI Customer Service Online Inquiry Form:
ESBI Telephone Number: 1-888-288-3724
Also fill out their inquiry form, call them and demand they reverse the charge.
Just got off the phone with verizon. Was told that my initial call about this wasn't followed through (thanks for nothing Steve). Now I am told about this outside company that has charged this.... They are once again telling me that it is going to be removed, but I may be billed directly for this.....what **bleep**......
This is called "cramming".
This is unfortunately the way third-party billing services work ... some nitwit once upon a time thought it would be useful if you could bill everything to your phone bill and pay it all at the phone company in a sort of "one stop" fashion. This ideal is long since dead with the arrival of the Internet, but the requirements that the phone company continued support this capability remain.
Since Verizon is the just the conduit for the billing ... you must address the complaint to the originator of the charge. There is a dispute process which exists for such types of charges which dictates that the originator MUST reverse the charge and cease billing you in this manner upon notification (make sure you keep records in writing of this process). If they fail to comply, you can then get Verizon to forcibly reverse the charge -- but only after you've pursued it with the originator.
So ... first thing, call the originator and demand it be reversed AND demand all future charges cease immediately.
Second, there is the ability to "block" these third party charges from occurring in the future. Call Verizon and ask for a "third party billing block" to be placed on your account. Note that if you have a long distance provider other than Verizon that this may prevent them from billing you thru a consolidated billing process on your phone bill -- and thus you may receive a seperate bill from the long distance company. They are, afterall, a third party agency.
Verizon's comment about you being billed separately for the services which were already charged is simply them telling you that just because they reverse the charge, doesn't mean your liability to pay it goes away. The company which initiated may indeed by a con-artist and nothing will every come of it ... however, they could also be legitimate and think that they have a relationship you authorized with them ... in which case they will bill you directly and attempt to collect. This is why you need to contact the originator of the charge directly -- by phone and in writing -- to fix the initial charge and prevent any future ones.
You might be interested in this recent topic about Cramming on the Verizon at Home blog:
Edit: Also, here is a link to an article on this subject that I just found at the MSNBC website:
FiOS TV, Internet, and phone user
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