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Attorney General William Tong


Attorney General Tong Seeks Answers on Optimum's Ill-Timed, Anti-Consumer Plan to Cut Internet Speeds

(Hartford, CT) – Attorney General William Tong today called on Optimum by Altice to drop its ill-timed, anti-consumer plan to dramatically decrease internet upload speeds from 35 megabits per second to as little as 5. Attorney General Tong sent a letter today to Optimum seeking detailed information on the plan, the scope of its impact in Connecticut, and alternatives available to consumers. In his letter, Attorney General Tong notes the ongoing pandemic, and Connecticut families’ continued reliance on broadband service to ensure they can learn and work remotely and access vital information and services.

“Optimum’s Plan not only raises prices on essential broadband services, it further exacerbates the ‘digital divide’ in Connecticut at a time when the continuing coronavirus pandemic has made more families reliant on their broadband service than ever,” Attorney General Tong states in the letter.

“It is simply unconscionable to raise rates on Connecticut families when they both need broadband internet the most and are least able to bear higher cost for adequate service. I urge you to reconsider implementing Optimum’s Plan by: (a) canceling the Plan altogether; or, at the very least (b) postponing the Plan for one year or until the current economic and public health crisis is over,” Attorney General Tong further states.

The letter seeks detailed answers to a series of questions regarding the impact of the plan in Connecticut, including how the changes have been marketed and communicated to consumers. The letter also asks Optimum whether the company currently caps consumer data usage, or whether they intend to institute a cap in the future. Attorney General Tong previously called on Comcast to postpone implementation of their plan to add a surcharge on data usage above 1.2 TB. Under pressure from Attorney General Tong and others, Comcast agreed to postpone implementation of their cap until 2022.

“Optimum and Comcast could not get away with these ill-timed, anti-consumer measures if we had real consumer choice for broadband access. Right now, we have little regulation and limited competition, and Connecticut families are paying an unacceptable price,” said Attorney General Tong.

Assistant Attorneys General Lauren Bidra, John Wright, and Michael Wertheimer, Deputy Associate Attorney General & Chief of the Consumer Protection Section assisted the Attorney General in this matter.
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