If you don’t live in a big city, your internet connection is at risk.
Last week, some Verizon customers in rural areas received unexpected news. The carrier would be terminating their service as of October 17th because they were using a “significant amount of data while roaming off the Verizon Wireless network.” These users were roaming because their “primary place of use” was outside the company’s service area.
Verizon says it sent notifications to about 8,500 customers (19,000 affected lines) in 13 states this month to inform them of the disconnections. According to the carrier, “the roaming costs generated by the affected lines exceed what these consumers pay us each month.” In layman’s terms, that means it’s actually costing Verizon money to keep those customers.
This is the second wave of similar disconnections in recent months. In June, the carrier told Ars Technica that it terminated service for “a small group” of customers who were using “a vast amount” of data in rural regions. According to Ars Technica, those people appeared to be supported by Verizon’s LTE in Rural Areas (LRA) program, where the national carrier partners with smaller regional companies to provide service in areas where it doesn’t have towers.
Those affected by this new wave of disconnections have a little more than a month to find a new service provider, which may not be an easy feat.