That’s according to an email by CEO Glen Post that he sent to all CenturyLink employees. In addition to this lawsuit, CenturyLink faces a flurry of class-action lawsuits in several states that followed a lawsuit filed in Arizona by former employee Heidi Heiser, who said she was fired from her job as a customer service and sales agent days after notifying Post of the alleged billing scheme.
In addressing her lawsuit, Swanson said internet and cable television companies aggressively compete for business with one another, and that many consumers try to shop for the lowest prices. Her complaint cites numerous examples of consumers who were quoted one price but charged another.
“Shopping for internet and cable TV service isn’t easy if companies don’t give straight answers about the prices they will charge,” she said.
Post said Swanson’s statement that CenturyLink has been uncooperative in assisting in her investigation isn’t true.
“We are at a loss to understand this position, as we have been fully cooperating with the AG’s office since its inquiry began and have provided all information that has been requested,” he said. “We produced thousands of pages of materials and all requested call recordings we or our vendors possessed. We had several phone meetings with the AG’s office about the information provided and were never told they thought we were being uncooperative. Given this, we naturally disagree with the AG’s characterization.”
As for the class-action lawsuits, Post said those are based on the claims in Heiser’s suit and a sampling of customer complaints pulled from social media.
“These claims were accompanied by what seems to be a pretty coordinated negative media and PR campaign aimed at CenturyLink and a rush of securities litigation as well,” he said. “As with the AG claim, we are taking these claims very seriously and fully investigating them. However, it should be noted that at no time during her (Heiser) employment did this former employee make a report to our Integrity Line. Also, despite claims to the contrary, this matter was never brought to my attention.
Suggestions that CenturyLink defrauded its customers “go against everything we stand for as a company,” Post said.
“We take these allegations very seriously and are diligently investigating them,” he said. “In addition to committing significant internal resources, our board of directors has hired the law firm O’Melveny & Myers to conduct an independent review of these issues. This decision was made immediately after learning of our former employee’s claim and is one that I completely support. Whatever we find in our review of these matters, we will do what we always aspire to do: we will be fair and do the right thing.”