Dish’s billing system is broken and I can’t fix it

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Shutterstock
Dish deducted $94 from William Leeper’s account without crediting him. Now it’s turned off his subscription TV service for non-payment. What gives?

Question: I’ve been having a billing problem with Dish Network for the last three months. Dish deducted $94 from my bank account in June but it never posted to my Dish account.

I called back in mid-July when I saw my unpaid bill and asked the company’s payment research department to investigate. But by the end of July, the money still wasn’t in my account, and my account was closed because of non-payment.

At the end of August, I called the Dish executive resolutions department, and was told to send my bank statement in showing the payment. I did, but I received no response.
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ADT is stonewalling me — should I stop paying my bill?

Robinson/Shutterstock
Robinson/Shutterstock
Krishnan Ramanathan is being double-billed for his home security system. Should he just stop paying it?

Question: About two months back, we moved to a new residence. Our ADT residential security service is in my wife’s name, although I handle most of the activities, including payments. We called ADT before our move and scheduled an appointment (incidentally on the same day that we moved into our new home). The sales rep who met us told us that since we have been longtime ADT customers (about 7 years), the installation, activation etc. would be free of charge and I just had to pay the monthly charges.

Meanwhile in our previous home, we had been making semi-annual payments and the sales rep told us that our first statement would be adjusted based on past payments. The actual service activation for our new home was not until a month after we moved in, since they couldn’t find any earlier day that was convenient to us.

The installation and activation went smoothly until we received our first statement and discovered that the past payment was not adjusted. So I called ADT billing and after almost a hour of being moved around between the billing, move, and new customer activation departments, I was finally curtly told that since the account was in my wife’s name, she would have to call in to make any changes to the same.
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Hey, that’s no four-star hotel!

Question: I recently booked a hotel in Prague through Expedia. While perusing the hotels online, I saw an advertisement for an unpublished rate hotel. I clicked the advertisement and was presented with three four-star hotels from which to choose.
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Are new warning and tracking systems enough to make us forget about TSA agents’ misdeeds?

It’s been a “good news” kind of week for observers of our nation’s security apparatus. At least that’s how the government is spinning it.

But there’s plenty of bad news for travelers, too. More on that in a minute.

On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security announced it had scrapped the color-coded terrorism alerts and was moving to a more “robust” two-tiered system called the National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS).

The feds also issued a helpful guide (PDF) that explains NTAS. It’s an interesting read. It promises to only issue alerts “when credible information is available” and to include “a clear statement that there is an imminent threat or elevated threat.”

The implication, of course, is that under the previous system, there was sometimes no imminent threat and the warnings were vague. The guide also contains DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s favorite saying, which gives a lot of travelers the creeps: the Orwellian, “If you see something, say something.”
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