I'll start by saying I only have Comcast Internet. I just recently started looking into this in more detail. I'm usually around 300GB uasage. July 2018, I streamed more content (HD 720 on laptop & 1080 on Apple TV, I don't have 4K capability) due to being home more, so I knew it would be higher; I was thinking probably around 600GB. Around the end of July I purchased a new modem (Netgear CM1000) and my own router (TP-Link). But was shocked that I with 4 days left in July I ran over the 1TB cap. Used a courtesy month, which was crazy, because I didn't do too much of anything and the usage meter continued to be out of control.
Ok, time to get serious like Sherlock and investigate. August 1-5, 2018. Comcast shows my usage as 173GB. Hmmmmmmmmmm. First day August 1st was measured at 23 GB. Hadn't done anything but surf internet for 1 hour (shouldn't that be like around 200MB)!! And as far as the meter starting the previous day (July 31), well, since I had went over that month, I didn't stream or do much of anything that day.
For all the first 5 days I streamed HD video (not 4K) for only 10 hours at most (17G, surfing of internet (1.5G, emails (16M, and download 2 audiobooks (500M.
I begin to closely monitor all of my network connections via my router's statistics of total bytes that each MAC address is using. I'm connecting 1 phone, 2 tablets, 3 streaming devices (Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast), 1 laptop, 1 Thermostat, and of course, my desktop computer running Windows 10. So 9 total devices using broadband at any given point in time. I see no intrusion or other devices connected to my network. And the total usage the router shows is way less than the 173GB that Comcast says I used. I also check my desktop computer and Windows 10 only reports about 7GB used by the ethernet connection in the past 30 days.
Ok, I'm unplugging all streaming devices and turning off wi-fi to my phone and laptop. That will leave only 3 devices connected, the desktop computer, tablet, and thermostat.
August 6, 2018. Wake up this morning to see the usage meter is now at 228. What in the world??? So now we have this issue all of a sudden. Only change was to the Netgear CM1000 modem. Interestingly, when I log into my account, under my modem info it says, "Issue detected." It wants me to restart modem (which I've done several times). But everytime I talk to Comcast Level 1, Level 2, or whatever level help there is, they say the modem is fine. Hmmmmmmmmmmm. The modem may be working but the broadband usage meter is NOT working right; the meter has an error. It is inflating my numbers. Only two people in my home; we're not big data users.
Comcast said they will start an investigation, but I haven't been able to talk to the person that is supposedly investigating this. Or how long it will take. Or when I'll get a call back. Are you kidding me?
How much lower is the TP-link vs Comcast?
I wonder if they still have the old modem on your account. Another test you could do would be to shut off everything - ie: shut modem off for more than 24 hours - check data use - leave off for more than 24 more hours - check data use. If it keeps climbing during that, then they must have something else attached to your account.
Here's a nice simple math example:
Comcast says I used 228GB in 5 days. The HD streaming math from their data estimator website says you use 1.7GB per hour. Sooooooooo, that would mean I streamed for almost 27 hours every day for 5 days!! Oh, but wait, there's only 24 hours in a day. I definitely have a case now.
Time to listen to my downloaded audiobook; wouldn't want to confuse the upcoming investigation as to my data usage.
This is going to be adventurous, I can already tell. Shut down modem this morning. Now I'm not using ANY data. Connected to an Xfinity hotspot in my neighborhood to stay online. Now my usage meter says I'm up to 270GB. Let's just keep documenting and see where this goes.
" shut modem off for more than 24 hours - check data use - leave off for more than 24 more hours - check data use. If it keeps climbing during that, then they must have something else attached to your account."
or there is something off about the Comcast meter. Is that impossible to consider?
I am at 242 GB for the month of August... on Aug 6th. I am monitoring the network as best I can and I do not see where this amount of data is being used.
Using the utility meter analogy that is offered up here, there should be a way to see the wheels turning in the meter at any moment, as you can with a electric or water meter. I don't think utilities get to mask their meter and report approximate usage for month to date at any moment with no breakdown of actual demand/usage at any given moment.
You can file complaint with FCC here: https://consumercomplaints.fcc.gov/hc/en-us?return_to=%2Fhc%2Frequests
Solved based on two posts in this forum. Thank goodness for those posts. One of them mentioned that Comcast an Netgear know something is up, which would make sense to me too.
I had bought the Netgear CM1000-1AZNAS modem which is NOT supported by Comcast. Avoid that model like the plague. (Just to be confusing, there is another version called CM1000-100NAS which is supposedly supported)
Who knows how mine was provisioned, but it must have sent some wonky signals to Comcast making them think I ate up 270 GB in 5 days. Ha! I'm returning that modem based on false advertising and ordered another brand FULLY supported modem based on the forums here and my research. Case solved. Now to get back my 270 GB of data I didn't use.................................................. waiting for callback from supervisor.
So I returned the offending modem I had bought (Netgear CM1000-1AZNAS) and replaced with a TP-Link TC7650. For those just joining the conversation, my Netgear modem had reported a data usage of 270 GB in just 5 days. That's impossible, and not one of the seveal people including corporate I talked to at Comcast denied that. So it was refreshing to see my new TP-Link modem report that in 11 days I've used 187 GB, which seems a WHOLE lot more reasonable. In fact, I intentially used more internet these last 11 days to really "push" and see if I could even get to 270 GB. Couldn't do it, thereby proving my point to Comcast.
A curious thing: After successfully installing the TP-Link with Comcast Chat, I was unable to log into my Comcast account. I could go everywhere on the internet, EXCEPT my Comcast account. Its like someone was doing some deep research and they had to disable my access while they looked at it. Well, I tried consistently to log in every 5 minutes, because now my curiosity was piqued. After about an hour, I could get back log in and could tell someone had re-labeled my modem in an even more detailed way. Someone had made sure the modem was provisioned and whatever else correctly on their end. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm. Suspician sustained.
Then I log in to my account the other day to find a random $20 credit on my account. No rhyme, reason, or communication. Just a credit showing. What an adventure this has been. Oh the twists and turns that we took together. Oh the list of countries I talked to. The contradictory info given at each step of the way leading to corporate. Last call was golden when I had to inform the rep who had called me back of his own corporate person over his dpeartment. He said he didn't know that name. (Sigh) Then he asked for spelling. And spell it I did. One....letter....at......a..........time.