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PHONE BILL IS $8.7 MILLION

PHONE BILL IS $8.7 MILLION

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Cori Ward's mother got a little defensive when she received her phone bill for three weeks' service - $8.7 million.

``She says, 'I only called my sister,' ' said Ward, who handles her elderly mother's bills.The bill from Illinois Bell should have read $87.98, not $8,709,800.33.

The error occurred when someone incorrectly typed a ``correction' into the computer system, said Larry Cose, a Bell spokesman.

``We apologized, of course,' said Cose. ``Something like this rarely happens.'

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