I called into Qwest this morning to pay my phone payment over the phone & the customer service rep who was helping me mentioned that there was a $150 charge on my account for calls made to a 1-900 #. There were 2 charges, both exactly 19 minutes long and both exactly $75 each made on June 13, 2005, and June 22, 2005. The 1-900 name that was showing was Web Access ZZ and the contact information for billing was Integretel 900. I was outraged as I have never called a 1-900 #, and looking back through my palm, I realized I wasn't home at either time the calls were made!
I got online & googled Integretel 900. The astounding thing is that the first page of hits were all complaint websites talking about this scam! What I found out was that these charges are actually a result from spyware that infested my computer (called INSTANT ACCESS and also calls itself ACCESS CONTROL). The spyware hijacked my modem and called the numbers without my knowledge or consent. All of the complaints I read said the exact same thing!
I called Integretel and was met by a very defensive "service rep" who kept asking for my phone #, my physical address, my full name. I kept telling him that they already ripped me off and there was NO way I was going to give him my information! He kept saying that he felt threatened by my tone of voice and that I needed to remain calm. I asked him if he was authorized to refund charges & block my # from their list. He said that he was there to help me figure out who in my household made the charges! WHAT?! There is no one else in my house...unless you count my kitten! Finally I told him to stop wasting my time and put someone on the phone with the authority to get this taken care of.
I was then transferred to Jill (agent id# 67357) who kept telling me that there is no way for it to be a scam and that they verify everybody who calls because you have to click "accept". Ummmmm...WHAT?! I kept telling her the information that I had found out about the spyware and she kept denying. I told her that if she is the supervisor, she must be aware of the vast # of people calling in and disputing $150 charges! She said she has never had a complaint like this. She kept saying that they are just the billing company.
To make a long story shorter, she says that she reversed my charges, but it will take 1-2 billing cycles for the credit to show up on my Qwest bill, so there's no way to know whether or not it has actually happened. She refused to fax me a letter stating that the charges are fraudulent and are being reversed (which I wanted to give to Qwest in the event that the charges never get reversed). She also said that she blocked my #, so none of the 1-900 #'s that use her billing service will be able to call me, but that it would take at least 24 hours for this block to go into effect.
My advice is to call and speak directly to a supervisor, then call your phone company and have a 1-900 # block put on your phone so that it can't happen again. Then you need to go wipe your computer and start over.
I will be writing to the BBB and the FCC and to anyone else who will listen. I'm in marketing and advertising and because of my media contacts, I'm going to be talking to the newspaper, the local news, the radio stations in the hopes that it will bring this scam into the mainstream!