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Matrix Telecom Fined for Poor Quality of Service in Rural Areas

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USA based Matrix Telecom has been ordered to pay $875,000 to resolve an investigation by the telecoms regulator into whether it failed to complete long distance calls to rural areas on a just, reasonable, and non discriminatory basis.

Matrix has also been ordered to implement a three-year plan to ensure compliance with FCC requirements designed to combat the serious problem of long-distance calls failing to complete in rural areas.

"Our nation's telecommunications laws are based on the fundamental promise that all Americans should be able to call each other wherever they may be located," said Travis LeBlanc, Acting Chief of the Enforcement Bureau. "Rural America should not be treated differently, and we will continue to enforce the law to fulfill this promise."

The company also has to designate a senior corporate manager to serve as a compliance officer focusing on rural call completion issues in future who will have to report to the FCC any noncompliance with the consent decree within 15 days.

The Bureau initiated its investigation of Matrix (and companies Matrix had acquired, including Excel Telecommunications and Vartec Telecom) as a result of serious allegations about the company's ability to reliably complete long-distance calls dialed to rural areas.

After it received notice of the investigation, Matrix significantly reduced the number of intermediate providers (often called "least cost routers") that it used to deliver long-distance calls to rural areas. As a result of those routing changes, Matrix's call completion performance to rural areas substantially improved.In addition, Matrix made significant investments to upgrade its network and related operations to improve rural call completion performance.

In combination with the changes that Matrix has made as a result of the Enforcement Bureau's investigation, the consent decree resolves the Bureau's investigation into Matrix's practices and performance in completing long-distance calls over its own network or through the use of intermediate providers.

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Tags: fcc  matrix telecom  USA