ESBIfraudulent email phone charges


I was charged on my Embarq phone bill 14.95 for email service from ESBI, which I have never heard of and obviously never signed up for.


  • Ka
    Karen Servant Aug 16, 2008

    I just received my Embarq phone bill and there were $13.24 from ESBI. Contacted Embarq first and they told me I needed to contact ESBI and that they would put the $13.24 on dispute. However, I will be charged late payment fees if I don't pay the bill in total while this in dispute. The Embarq person recommended paying the bill in full until ESBI could provide me a credit for overpayment. This could take 2-3 billing cycles. Talked to ESBI and they said the same thing - that it will take 2-3 billing cycles for these bogus charges to be removed from my bill. Why should I have to pay for charges of services I never ordered - and further be penalized with late fees if I don't pay? I did some research on ESBI and it appears that this is a habit of theirs. When will they be fined or even better, put out of business?

    0 Votes
  • Br
    brian rowlette Sep 18, 2008

    I had the exact same thing happen to me. Cincinnati Bell told me they can remove the charge from this month but cannot automatically remove it from future bills. I assume I will have to call the phone company every month before I pay my bill.

    Cincinnati Bell also said their Fraud dept. cannot help. Unbelievable.

    I called the number for ESBI on my bill and got a loop of two questions sending me back to the previous question. Their web sight asked questions I refuse to answer to a faudulent company.

    0 Votes
  • Vz
    vzeyw Sep 22, 2008

    these charges are being activated by their IP address is!!! hope this is helpful to someone!!!

    0 Votes
  • Valerie Oct 13, 2008

    Just got the Verizon bill with a $21.35 charge from Internet Bus Advisors, billed thru ESBI!!! for a monthly web hosting service... that would be fine if i had a stinking web site!!! Just filled out a complaint to the FTC. will call VERIZON monday and start screaming!!!

    I'm supposed to have a block on my number, from getting Slammed by SPRINT years ago!!! I read about the FTC going after them a few years back, i mean talk about balls!!! to start up again... like i don't have enough stuff to deal with, i have to deal with lying cheating ### too!!!

    Will post a update after i get through with verizon...

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    james Oct 13, 2008

    I work for a major telecom company and I constantly get customers who are billed by this and other "3rd party billers" without knowledge or permission. USUALLY this happens when a customer answers an online survey or contest ("Get a free $100 gift card just for taking survey" etc.) and there is usually some sort of disclosure (3 pgs. of fine print that people don't usually read) that says by accepting you will be billed by XYX company for this service. You need to look at your monthly bill very carefully and dispute anything that doesn't look right.

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  • He
    Heidi Oct 26, 2008

    The same thing happened to me...I was billed on my At&t bill 14.95 from
    ESBI for "EMAIL DISCOUNTS, LLC' phone number of contact:1-800-410-5781.Rep was very rude. I'm reporting them to the Better Business Bureau

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    james Oct 27, 2008

    I work for a major telecom company. Be REALLY careful filling out online "surveys" and entering contests to win "free $100 gift card, iPod, digital camera", etc. These 3rd party billing companies can bill you for various services (email, voicemail, web hosting, long distance plan, etc) through your local phone company. Dispute them immed. and let your phone company know -- they often credit the charges and can help stop the billing. READ your phone bill each month -- if something looks wrong CALL them up and complain/dispute/discuss it. The longer it goes the harder it is to credit the charges and get the 3rd party to stop billing.

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    james Oct 27, 2008

    I work for a major telecom company and I constantly get customers who are billed by this and other "3rd party billers" without knowledge or permission. USUALLY this happens when a customer answers an online survey or contest ("Get a free $100 gift card just for taking survey" etc.) and there is usually some sort of disclosure (3 pgs. of fine print that people don't usually read) that says by accepting you will be billed by XYX company for this service. Let your phone co. know asap, and make sure they back up your dispute.

    0 Votes
  • Ba
    Bart Edwards Nov 03, 2008

    I can't believe this is happening to me too. I have a $29.95 a month charge each month for my business to be listed on the internet; I have no recollection of signing up for this. The billing is from ESBI; who the hell are they??? My wife called and they are not taking this off my bill despite her phone call to request this (which they agreed to do this). I am looking for an address to send the rip off company a certified letter to discontinue this service. I am also sending a letter to:
    California Public Utilities Commission
    ConsumerAffairs Branch
    505 Van Ness Ave.
    San Francisco, CA 94102, or at

    And my ATT Busines Telephone billing address. I am ticked off in this financial climate that I am getting this additional charge!!

    0 Votes
  • Sh
    shawn Nov 05, 2008

    I got the same charges from ESBI on my verizon bill. I called 888-296-3724. I was then transfered to another company called "My info Guard" and spoke with Krista. She states the charges were made online through "US prize Draw". The name of the person ordering was not myself or anyone in my family (someone by the name of Robert Defelms if that helps anyone). She states that since the info did not match up she would cancel the service and issue the credit for the september bill. She also advised that it was ready billed to my October bill and that she had already issued a credit for that. She states I would see that in credit on my verizon bill in 1-2 months. I am not holding my breath but done what I can for now. I'll wait and see. Good luck, the fact that anyone can charge your phone account without your permission is unbelievable.

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    Jason Nov 07, 2008

    Cincinnati Bell has something called "premium text block" that blocks the user from signing up for these services and from you being billed. I added it for jamster and it has worked ever since

    0 Votes
  • Wi
    William Sherman Pinkston Nov 17, 2008


    0 Votes
  • Kl
    KLZinker Nov 20, 2008

    I just recieved charges on my bill for My Info Guard and when we called to question Verizon they said that I had signed up for this through I have never once been to that site and I am very aware to internet scams. I am extremely upset that I got this charge and that someone out there is using my name.

    0 Votes
  • So
    Sonia Passos Nov 29, 2008

    Same thing happened with our phone bill. I'm trying to call the phone # they provide in our AT&T bill, but nobody answers. Does anybody know what kind of action must be taken in order to stop them doing that? I also want to do something in order to make the phone company take the responsabilities for what they charge us. Any help?

    0 Votes
  • Rb
    rbc Feb 01, 2009

    The latest version is for ESBI to bill fax-by-e-mail "services" provided by Network Assurance ( The domain is registered to: DaData, Inc., 26750 US Hwy 19N
    Clearwater, FL 33761 (which can easily be seen using Google Earth for anyone in the area that would like to stop by and deliver a token of their appreciation). is registered to Billing Concepts, 7411 John Smith Drive, Suite 200, San Antonio, TX 78229 (folks in that area might want to drop by for a "chat").

    I had Verizon block 3rd party billing on my account a couple of years ago, but somehow these things have begun appearing again. I will have to have another discussion with Verizon once the real people return to the office on Monday.

    BTW, the FTC nailed ESBI for "cramming" telephone bills with false 3rd party charges back in 2001: (I guess the "business" is just too lucrative).

    0 Votes
  • Rb
    rbc Feb 01, 2009

    BTW, you can file your complaint directly with the FTC via this link:

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Miller57 Feb 25, 2009

    I did not order any e-mail through ESBI. I do not expect my phone bill to be charged. I live on a limited income of disability and can not afford extra things that I am not using.

    I was charged $16.00 for something I did not even know I had. Is anyone going to reimburse me?

    How can companies keep getting away with this? When Embarq supplies me with e-mail why would they let another company charge me?

    They also let The Billing Resource charge me for voicemail that they also supply me with and that was another $16.84. What's up with that?

    0 Votes
  • Bi
    bigmammadd Mar 12, 2009

    I received my ATT home phone bill and I saw some charges from a company that I had never heard of, let alone used. So, I decide to call the phone company. But, then I saw the number for the company that billed me, the company’s name is Enhanced Services Billing, Inc (ESBI)1-800-263-0206.
    I called and spoke with someone named Jean. Who told me that someone ordered this service and used my fiancé’s e-mail address, but I’m the only one authorized to make changes to my account. And I know my Fiancé would not order the service because, we have the message center in our telephone plan. therefore we in no way needed this service. They took the charges off she said. Just in cause they didn’t I got a confirmation number.

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Mike Mar 27, 2009

    You can also file a complaint at the FCC online

    Cramming is policed by the FCC and the FTC but for separate reasons. File a complaint with both.

    0 Votes
  • Ju
    Julie Apr 29, 2009

    Call your phone company and block any 3rd party billing.

    0 Votes
  • Lu
    Lucy's mom Jun 20, 2009

    I just had three charges of 14.95 appear on my Frontier phone bill from ESBI. The phone is in my sisters name and the amount is paid directly out of her checking account. I contacted ESBI and they said that I had purchased residential email service that I had never heard of. They also provided me with the email address, IP address, date of birth and place of birth that was used to order this service. The email address was close to my name. Looks like someone who knew my name and address and phone number opened up an email account on google using my name. They then ordered the residential email. The date and place of birth they provided were incorrect of course. I then typed the IP address into a google search engine appeared on several sock 5 proxy lists. It appears that sock 5 proxies are used to make a persons IP address anonymous. I contacted Frontier, ESBI and Google. ESBI agreed to issue a credit, but I have yet to hear from Frontier. Google agreed to take action.

    1 Votes
  • Dc
    DCAT Aug 04, 2009

    I received a charge of $14.95 on my Qwest phone bill from ESBI in June. I called the 800 number and they said one of my kids ordered it and I said no they hadn't. I just got my July phone bill and another $14.95 charge from ESBI. I called the 800 number again and they said another one of my kids ordered it, again I said no and to refund me my money. I then put in a complaint with the Attorney Generals Office.

    0 Votes
  • Ob
    ObiwanCannoli Aug 10, 2009

    I called in to change my phone services, and was told about a $14.95 per month charge to ESBI. I am with Embarq in New Jersey. While the customer rep was doing the changes to my phone service, I googled "ESBI" and found this and numerous other sites discussing this obviously fraudulent company.

    Luckily, Embarq New Jersey is a reasonable company, the service rep went back and said this billing started in November, 2008. Which was 9 months ago. The total amount charge by ESBI was $134.55, and Embarq would refund that amount to my account. He was also able to block any future "third-party services" charges for my phone number. This was all done in a single phone call.

    I am sorry for everyone that is having problems either blocking the charge or in getting their money back. I can only say that Embarq New Jersey was extremely cooperative and can highly reccommend their ethics and efficiency.

    Steve (last name withheld to keep the vultures away).

    0 Votes
  • Bb
    BBt Sep 02, 2009

    On my July Verizon invoice I noticed an item (fake)for Voice Mail and called immediately to Verizon and challenged the $12.95 plus taxes charge they had placed on the bill. I was told to call ESBI which I could find listed on page 4 in the bill papers. However they set me over them after my request. During the "set over" line went dead so I found page four and called. Talked to a person who identified herself as "Michelle" and after my complaint that I had never ordered any Voice mail from them and that demanded removal of my name from any paper or information that had and that I wanted full refund ASAP. She said she would remove me from their "account" (obviously fake) immediately and provide me (Verizon) the refund within 2 billing cycles. However I was told to pay the Verizon bill in full since they (ESBI) could not authorize deduction on the Verizon bill. "Result", I got the August Verizon bill with the same charge yesterday and no refund. This is crazy, specifically that I now find out all the scam complaints that has been lodged AND FCC not taking any action against this operation. I guess a complaint to the MD Attorney General has to be launched if I do not get this cleared. Since I write this in the middle of the night I will call ESBI tomorrow and "read them the riot act".

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Mingtoi Sep 27, 2009

    I was looking over my new phone bill wondering why the last two bills had went up. When I noticed a miscellaneous charge from ESBI. I then went to my files and also found it on the previous bill. I called the company and was told I submitted an online application for there services. I then asked the young lady to tell me what was there services. It was a bunch of crap. I told her that she was lying and that I wanted a refund for both bills and that I was going to file a complaint against them. I was told she needed my email address to send me a copy of the application. This is where I cought her in a lie. If I completed and online application shouldn't you have my email address already. She could not give out that information to me. When I asked for a supervisor, I was told he was gone for the day. I refused to give her my email address and will be calling back on tomorrow.

    0 Votes
  • Xx
    Xxena Oct 19, 2009

    10/19/2009 - was going through my phone bill today with AT&T - Illinois (NW burbs of Chicago) and found this billing from two companies for services I have never heard of or ordered and they came under the huge bold text heading on my bill at the end of ESBI. Have been researching them and found lawsuits against them go back as far as 1997 for all the complaints listed prior to me and probably then some. They current address is in San Antonio TEXAS but they are incorporated in Deleware which has laws that seem to protect these rip off corporations that do this kind of thing. Yet when you do a check on ESBI they come up under a number of "other corporations" aka Shell Corporations and more searches we use in the business world turns up NO CEO, NO President, NO Board of Directors etc.

    The is a rather extensive Blog on them dated November of 2005 and the comments there, from other bloggers to the site start in 2005 and go all the way until October of 2009 for the same reasons and coming from the various states these people move into to perform their scams and steal from people paying their bills honestly. I was billed by 2 companies through ESBI, one was called : Myteleservices Inc. and was told when I called to complain and have it removed that I emailed them for their service. I tracked the email to a account listed in Bensenville IL but the service provider is the same telephone/DSL service we use with its location in Mt. Prospect Illinois.

    I had the same rude arrogant combatitive representatives from both these companies others compained about. Trying to contact this ESBI is a joke.. their website give you a predone email form to email them.. on my AT&T (Illinios) bill they list NO number to contact them directly, instead some bogus 800 numbers for these 2 bogus companies that are billing me. When I called AT&T this name was not unknown to them, nor complaints.. the woman advised they (AT&T) would credit me for all the charges and taxes to date and I should authorize a block of my account to ESBI this would keep them from billing me more. She eluded that they would without the block even though they said they had cancelled my account and would refund. So obviously this company is well known to the local large phone companies.

    The FTC has brought suit against them for class action suits and won. I called the FTC and talked to the man in charge of consumer protection.. he was well aware of them and asked if I would file a formal complaint on line and I am doing that now... People need to call their local phone company and the FTC about this company if they are being billed illegally by them and file the FTC report so they can go after this company again. I'm going further I'm filing a complaint with the Attorney General of Illinois and the Federal Attorney General in DC... this is their job.. these people are using public utilities to defraud the public and its time to shut them down and put in prison who is behind this. If the defrauded consumer does not complain and take the steps necessary they will continue like they have for the past 12 years.

    Don't do the complacent thing of "its only $14.95 and I got that refunded.. think of it as $14.95 times how many thousands of people that don't notice ... 14.95 times 10, 000 people is $150, 000 for doing NOTHING but running a scam and you can bet the number of people effected runs into the hundreds of thousands not 10's of thousands !! You can file formal complaint at the FTC ( online without talking ot anyone. You can file a complaint not with the BBB (Better Business Bureau they have no real teeth to stop this stuff) instead with the Attorney General of your State, they have Consumer division for this type of thing.

    Denise K - Illinois

    0 Votes
  • La
    Lausburn Feb 27, 2010

    As an fyi, ESBI is a division of BSG Clearing, a reputable company that has been in business for 20+ years.

    BSG is a local exchange carrier (“LEC”) clearinghouse, not a telephone company or telephone service provider. BSG is simply the billing clearinghouse, not the initiator of any charges. BSG forwards charges for services provided by various long distance, operator service, and digital content providers to local phone companies such as AT&T, Verizon and Qwest to be included consumers’ local telephone bills.

    BSG’s customers (vendors NOT consumers) include long distance, operator service and enhanced service providers that offer valuable services to millions of consumers across the nation. As a result, BSG enables competition in the long-distance, operator service, and digital content markets by providing consumers with service provider alternatives at highly competitive rates.

    It is important to note that before BSG accepts a service provider as a customer, BSG subjects the service provider and its officers and directors to a comprehensive due diligence process. This process includes extensive product review, background checks, and site visits.

    If the service provider becomes a customer of BSG, then BSG monitors the number of end user inquiries each service provider receives each month. BSG may require the service provider to cease billing or terminate the service provider based on performance.
     Here is the typical transaction flow for most services:
    o Service provider markets its service to a consumer.
    o Service provider must obtain consumer’s consent through third-party verification (“TPV”) recording or electronic letter of authorization (“LOA”).
    o Service provider validates information provided in the consent to ensure charge is authorized.
    o Service provider sends charge to BSG.
    o BSG sends charge to appropriate phone company (because BSG holds the contract with the phone companies the charge will appear on ESBI, USBI, ZPDI, OAN, or HBS page of local telephone bill. This is often where confusion comes in. Consumers will note that the actual VENDOR from whom the charge is coming is typically printed right below ESBI’s information.)
    o Phone company includes charge on appropriate consumer’s bill page.
    o Consumer pays telephone bill.
    o Phone company deducts amounts for fees, refunds, and reserves and then remits balance to BSG.
    o BSG deducts amounts for fees, refunds, and reserves and then remits balance to service provider.
    (Note: If the charge is for a long distance, collect call, or 1010XXX call, then the service provider will have a record of the call actually taking place on the network. The record of the call is called a “switch record.”)
    While no company in any payment industry can ensure the elimination of fraud, BSG has done more to prevent fraud in the third-party billing industry than any other company.
    Should a consumer find a charge on their bill that they did not authorize, we recommend they start at the source by first trying to remedy the issue with the service provider. If they don’t get relief, they can then contact BSG at:
    (800) 460-0756 for ZPDI
    (800) 460-0556 for USBI
    (800) 460-0078 for ESBI
    (800) 604-4653 for HBS
    (800) 944-9646 for ACI/OAN
    One note is that – because charges billed through BSG do require valid authorization - in only rare instances a vendor charge is made in error. (Could be the consumer doesn’t recognize the charge because it is being billed through BSG; a spouse made a charge without notifying their partner, or the consumer simply forgot). That said, BSG is happy to help consumers clear up any questions they may have.

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  • St
    STOP ESBI Mar 19, 2010

    Having recently been a victim of BSG/ESBI’s unauthorized billing I will refrain from repeating all that has been said here. I found it interesting that the company incorrectly lists corporate “Bye-Laws” (rather than the correct term “Corporate Bylaws”) on its website; they have clearly waved goodbye to our laws and have no interest in corporate governance or due diligence. What you may find even more shocking is Wall Street’s “buy” on this deceptive company as noted here

    This document contains a wealth of information essential to understanding how this monopoly is planning to grow and gain market share this year. Speaking to shareholders about the legal risks and constant violations of FCC settlement conditions is important.

    Once the capital dries up it’s over

    0 Votes
  • Ed
    Edubb May 15, 2010

    I just experienced the same thing-a charge of $14.95 appeared on my phone bill and refelcted that ESBI applied this charge on behalf of "". I first called the phone company who very politely explained that they had not control over it but that I should add a 3rd party billing block to our service. So, anybody reading this needs to add that feature to their phone service to prevent this from happening again. I then began researching this company and learned about the class action lawsuit brought against ESBI in 2001 for the exact same thing they did to me. The court settled with the company but it stated they were in violation of Section 5 of the FTC Act. Due to the statement posted above by "Lausburn", I went to BSG's website to learn a little about them. I then called the number provided on my phone bill for ESBI and was told I had signed up for the service on a "" which I stated was a site I had never visited (which was really true, because I love my job). I told them to cancel the service and refund my money. They kept asking for me to verify my address which I was wary of, but then when I wouldn't give it to him he told me what it was, so somehow he knew it all along. He stated he would refund the next months amount that had already been posted but we would have to pay the amount already on our current bill. I told them, "no, you will refund all of the money" and as soon as I mentioned they were in violation of the FTC Act and I knew their company had been sued in the past for this very thing the man very quickly changed his attitude and provided a full refund. I don't see how it is possible that BSG monitors to prevent fraud like they say they do or all of these complaints and lawsuits would not have been filed against their divisions (ESBI). It seems fairly simple that if the service providers are suppossed to receive these "recorded" or "electronic letters of authorizations" that ESBI should just require these consents from the service providers before the billing process can be initiated. But, don't give up-they will give you your money back if you do your research and know enough to make them realize they can't give you the run around. Companies that support these types of fraudulant acts (by pretending they have no idea about what is going on) should be ashamed of themelves and put out of business for good!

    0 Votes
  • Tr
    TrippE Nov 16, 2010

    I also have been charged the perfunctiory 14.95 thru ESBI. This is the third time this has happened to us. The first time thru HBS and was told that we had signed up for some diet web site, which no one here had done. I argued and they agreed to cancel it and take the charge off.
    The second time thru HBS and they agreed to the same thing as before.
    I called Century Link where the bills were showing up and they advised me to add the third party billing block, so I said please do.
    Now 3 Months later here comes ESBI. I am going to call tomorrow and see If I can get it cancelled and removed from my bill. Then I am calling Century Link and see what happened to the block. It would seem to me that the big phone companys make enough without haveing to do business with BSG Clearing, which based on another post that is where the charges are sent and then to the phone companys that we all deal with. I would love to see how much the phone companys get for doing the billing for BSG Clearing and their "customers" . Let BSG send out thier own bills for thier customers thru the mail and leave the phone companys out of it.

    Tripp, NC

    0 Votes
  • C6
    C6 Vette Jan 24, 2011

    Received my Verizon bill today and a $14.95 charge fro ESBI...never heard of them and did not sign up for their voicemail service. Verizon removed charge and advised me to call ESBI. ESBI is nothing but a bunch of scam artists. Hispanic accent so thick they can hardly be understood. I cancelled and got a confirmation #. Planning on reporting them to FCC, for all the good that will do. This is not Verizon's fault, they were very helpful in getting this resolved.

    0 Votes
  • La
    Lausburn Jan 25, 2011

    Good morning! An fyi, ESBI is a billing service NOT the merchant providing the voicemail service. ESBI processes on behalf of merchants across the U.S. much like Visa or Mastercard, placing purchases for digital goods on your phone bill. If you have a charge you don't recognize and you are unable to reach the merchant directly to contest the charge, ESBI is happy to research the charge for you. The fastest remedy: visit You'll find phone numbers to call for Customer Care or you can enter your query directly online. Best of luck!

    0 Votes
  • La
    Lausburn Jan 25, 2011

    ESBI is a billing service which processes billing for Merchants around the US. The charge on your phone bill was generated from a merchant and sent through ESBI's system for payment. If you see a charge you don't recognize and are unable to reach the merchant, ESBI is happy to research the charge for you and take any actions necessary to remedy your complaint. Visit for Customer Care contact numbers or to enter your query directly online. Best of luck.

    0 Votes
  • La
    lahnyc Mar 15, 2011

    Ask your phone company to put a block on all third parties from automatically charging you. I saw this charge, called Verizon about it, and they offered to put a third-party block on my number, and gave me ESBI's number---and you better believe I called them about the charge and got my credit! FYI, they'll ask you for your email and home addresses---don't give them any more information than they need, your phone number is bad enough! I refused, and made sure I got the credit. Make sure to get a confirmation number, and the name and number of the person you speak to!

    0 Votes
  • Gw
    Gwen S. Mar 21, 2011

    I usually just pay my bill but decided to check on a monthly charge of $14.95 on my bill. When I looked at the last page it says that it's a third party. I called Verizon and told them I've never heard of this and at first I thought it was Verizon but then looking closing at my bill I knew it couldn't have been Verizon. It was a monthly credit for checking on my voice mail. Why would I want that attached since Verizon is the one providing the voice mail. The customer rep was really nice. She asked me how far back was the charges and I told her I keep my bills for at least six months and she credited my account back to then and block them. I then called ESBI and find out, and this was on a Saturday, and talked to their sale rep. She asked my name and she asked me did I now a Anna, forgot the last name, and I said I've never heard of her. She asked me what state I lived in and I told her. She said well this person lives in a completely different state and told me that these charges have been on there since February, 2008. I didn't get this phone number until October, 2007. It's been on there that long. She said it's a 1-800 service enhancement that allows family members and friends to call you toll free. She credited my account from that far back and I got her name and a reference number. She told me because of the billing cycle I'll probably will see it on my bill the next time. I didn't tell her that Verizon blocked them. My question is why didn't Verizon do any cross checking. When this ESBI sent them the charges they should require at least a name and address to make sure it's the same party being charged. Also, if it's not coming from your local phone company then no other company should be allowed to put any charges on your phone bill. That should be a separate bill. I was really mad about this but we'll see what whether it all goes through.

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