New York sues over slow internet speeds

New York Attorney General accuses provider of lying to customers

New York sues over slow internet speeds

Network cables are plugged in a server room | Image: Michael Bocchieri/Getty Images

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has filed a lawsuit against an internet provider, accusing the firm of lying to customers about the speeds they can deliver and the reliability of its network. 

Spectrum, formerly known as Time Warner Cable, is accused in the lawsuit of 'defrauding customers since 2012' by charging them for services it knew it could not provide. The suit claims the firm “conducted a systematic scheme to defraud and mislead subscribers”.

The lawsuit details how the firm leased almost one million older generation modems and routers to customers, all the while knowing they "were incapable of achieving the promised internet speeds.” 

In a statement sent to Gizmodo, Charter Communications, Spectrum's parent company, said:

"We are disappointed that the New York Attorney General chose to file this lawsuit regarding Time Warner Cable’s broadband speed advertisements that occurred prior to Charter’s merger. Charter made significant commitments to New York State as part of our merger with Time Warner Cable in areas of network investment, broadband deployment and offerings, customer service and jobs.

In addition, Charter was among the highest rated broadband providers in the 2016 FCC Broadband Report. Charter has already made substantial investments in the interest of upgrading the Time Warner Cable systems and delivering the best possible experience to customers. We will continue to invest in our business and deliver the highest quality services to our customers while we defend against these allegations involving Time Warner Cable practices."

Schneiderman filed the lawsuit in Manhattan's State Supreme Court on Wednesday, following a 16-month investigation. 

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, Schneiderman explained how customers paying $110 a month for 300 Mbps, were on average, only getting 85 Mbps. Those paying $70 a month for 100 Mbps were getting 50 Mbps. On average, Wi-Fi speeds were 80 percent slower than what customers were promised.