Securus Starts to Highlight Global Tel Link (GTL) Wrongdoings/Integrity Breaches
Press Release Jun 07, 2016
First Report in a Series – The Louisiana Public Service Commission Investigation of GTL Wrongdoing – January 21, 1998 Order. Securus to Release Additional Reports over the Next Six Months on GTL to Shame Carrier into Acting with Higher Integrity
DALLAS, TX June 7, 2016 -- Securus Technologies, a leading provider of civil and criminal justice technology solutions for public safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring, announced that a release of multiple reports, facts, findings and articles that will highlight wrongdoings and integrity breaches by inmate communications provider Global Tel Link (a.k.a. “GTL”).
This press release represents the first in a series of articles that Securus will publish highlighting wrongdoings and integrity breaches by GTL.
“I love our industry – serving law enforcement, corrections, inmates, friends/family members, and all of society,” said Richard A. (“Rick”) Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Securus Technologies. “It offends me and our entire industry when a carrier stoops well below the integrity bar that most other carriers have – but GTL does not. Our business’ mission is a lot more than making money. It is to serve all of our customers with their best interests at heart – in the right way.”
To that end, Securus will review multiple issues of systematic wrongdoings/potential wrongdoings by GTL in a series of press releases over the next six months in order to shame GTL into acting with higher/better integrity.
The first involves a formal 17-page Order No. U-20784-B by the Louisiana Public Service Commission (PSC) regarding GTL actions when they served the Louisiana Department of Corrections and provided outbound telecom services to thousands of inmates. The Louisiana PSC investigated GTL actions and found the following:
- Global Tel Link programmed the clocks in their telephones at correctional institutions to add either 15 or 36 seconds to the duration of each call and “Global’s practice of advancing the clocks [was] unauthorized… and unlawful”;
- Global Tel Link “programmed its telephones to rate calls on the basis of higher rates than those permitted either under its tariffs or the [PSC] rate caps” and “this practice was wholly unauthorized”
- Global Tel Link “artificially inflate[d] charges to its customers” by “the addition of various amounts of money to its calls after the calls were rated” and “No excuse could possibly exist for such action.” “The use of add-on programs is perhaps the most insidious and problematic of all of Global’s activities.”
- Global Tel Link “engaged in the practice of billing a single call more than once” and “No authorization exists for such double billing.”
- “In many instances, these unlawful practices were engaged in deliberately and with no other intent than to unlawfully overcharge customers.”
- “We find that as a result of the four practices described above,…Louisiana taxpayers were overcharged by Global in the amount of $1,243,000”.
“The Order by the PSC was dated January 21, 1998 – approximately 18 years ago which is a long time ago for sure,” stated Smith. “If that was the only potential wrongdoing – I would not be bringing it up now – but their potential wrongdoings have continued. Our customers need a higher level of integrity than to have a carrier deliberately programming clocks that time the duration of calls and adding 15 to 36 seconds to calls, charging rates over those permitted, fraudulently adding overcharges, and fraudulently double billing calls. Those are the Louisiana PSC‘s words, not mine. That represents atrocious behavior on the part of a significant carrier in our sector, and I will not allow such a pattern of these actions to go unnoticed. Time does not dissipate what the Louisiana Public Service Commission said that GTL did – just as I would not do business with Enron or Bernie Madoff which both were mortally tainted years ago. I care deeply about the responsibilities that we carry, and we cannot allow such actions to tarnish our industry. Adding time to calls in telecommunications represents the ultimate in wrongdoing – playing tricks on your customers and scamming them is real B.S. and a cancer on our industry. Time does not take that sin away,” concluded Smith.
The full Louisiana Public Service Commission Order No. U-20784-B, Docket No. U-20784 is posted on the Securus website and can be found on this link.
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Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and serving more than 3,450 public safety, law enforcement and corrections agencies and over 1,200,000 inmates across North America, Securus Technologies is committed to serve and connect by providing emergency response, incident management, public information, investigation, biometric analysis, communication, information management, inmate self-service, and monitoring products and services in order to make our world a safer place to live. Securus Technologies focuses on connecting what matters®. To learn more about our full suite of civil and criminal justice technology solutions, please visit SecurusTechnologies.com.