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Background: Today it was reported that an auditor of major ISP broadband meters could not certify the
accuracy of five of seven usage meters. This report follows earlier
reports of discrepancies by independent network engineers and ongoing
complaints of meter errors in consumer forums.
The following statement can be attributed to Michael Weinberg, Vice President, Public Knowledge:
“Public Knowledge calls on all ISPs who use data caps to suspend those caps immediately. Until ISPs can prove to an independent technical expert that they can accurately measure consumer data consumption, they have no business charging consumers overage fees for allegedly going over their cap.
“The debate around data caps has been premised on the assumption that ISPs had the capacity to accurately count consumer data usage. ISPs should no longer be afforded the benefit of that doubt. Instead, ISPs have an obligation to consumers to suspend their data caps until – or unless – they can accurately meter usage.
"The FCC has always made clear that calling something a data cap is not an invitation to rip off subscribers. If consumers must rely on ISPs to police themselves, then they are entitled to have their data caps suspended until the ISPs can guarantee that their meters are accurate."