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Up to 70% of the costs of telephone calls from prisons and jails have nothing to do with the cost of the phone service provided. Detention facilities across the country have exclusive contracts with prison phone companies like Securus, Global Tel*Link and CenturyLink. Most of these contracts guarantee a substantial “commission” kickback to the state or county agency contracting with them, which is usually based on a percentage of the gross revenue from phone calls made by prisoners. As a result, contracts often go to the company that offers the highest kickback, not the lowest calling rates. Prisoners’ families end up paying inflated rates due to these unfair contracts.