Smuggling Internet phone service across borders

Net phone service gets taxed in Panama. So people are just signing up in the U.S. instead.

Another installment in the Internet's ability to route around regulations that are inconvenient. Apparently governments in Latin America heavily tax or even ban Internet voice services like Vonage. But now people in the U.S. have taken to signing up for Vonage accounts for their relatives, and then sending the appropriate equipment south of the border to people who have broadband accounts.

Vonage says it doesn't officially sanction the practice, but didn't have any limits on how many accounts people could set up. "There are no limits on how much toothpaste you can buy, right?" the representative told News.com.

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    John Borland
    covers the intersection of digital entertainment and broadband.
     

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