Check your phone bill.
Some 3rd-party billing company named IDL Teleservices (update as of 7/16/09 that link no longer works. Seems IDL has hacked my link and changed it to ILDtelecom. I never changed it! It used to go to a half-ass, deadlink-filled website. I shoulda done screen-caps!) has attached a charge to my phone bill with The "New!"Huge Phone Company.
They're acting as a billing agent for a company called, IntegrItel Wireless Communications. For webhosting services. Right. Except their dubious and/or suspiciously fake website with dead links advertises a wireless security camera monitoring service. Every product link just goes to an email to sales.
I have so many problems with this, I don't know where to begin. Last month, I tried calling IDL and the phone was never answered. So I called the "New!" Huge Phone Company and got the very friendly "New! Huge Phone Company" customer specialist who said that they didn't bill us, but that I was being billed through them.
Nuance. She hoped I wouldn't catch it, I guess.
"No," I replied, "we're not going that route. You are going to collect my monthly bill, and YOU are going to expect the extra 40 bucks for a service I never ordered or received, and you are going to put a bad debt reference on my account if I don't pay it, so YOU are going to investigate and fix this."
She assured me that it would be a contested charge and should be resolved in 30 days. Cool.
Fast forward to today. I'm still getting billed. Call again. Another sainted and sweet Southern Belle answers my call and begins the spiel. "Sorry," I interrupt, "We're not going there. Get me a supervisor."
Super Supervisor with the "New!" company has never heard of IDL. "Hmmm... we have so many 3rd-party billings," she offers.
"Not good enough. I'm the only one in jeopardy here and IDL doesn't answer their phones and I don't have any web services with IWC." So she instructs me to fax her the bill and she'd have some department investigate.
In the meantime, I'd had my phone on hold for almost 20 minutes waiting for IDL to pick up. When they finally did, the young man was extremely forceful and unpleasant,denied that they provided any services or products but were merely billing agents (sound familiar now?)and assured me the charge had been reversed by their client, "as a courtesy," although I've never seen any credit. He upbraided me for interrupting, so I upbraided him for lying to me. Nowhere. Going nowhere.
So, I faxed the "New!" Huge Phone Company the following:
- the #1 Google Search for IDL TeleServices. Heh.
- The Consumer Complaint website noting hundreds of complaints.
- the WhoIs lookup for the IDL website.
- the likely phony website for Integritel Wireless Communications, noting all the dead links and unanswered phone numbers. (Not to be confused with IntegrEtel, btw, which is also a 3rd-party billing company. Fun, huh?)
- The WhoIs lookup for the IWC website. Aw... New Jersey! What a surprise!
My phone company rep will be so excited to hear from me every day of the year until this is resolved. The "New!"Huge Phone Company doesn't /or pretends to not understand for whom they are collecting money? *ahem* I'm pretty sure they're earning some fancy interest on the holdovers until consumers wake up and question the charges.
But hey, until then, it's $40 here, $30 there. Pretty soon it adds up to real money. I'm sure it's all just an innocent misunderstanding.