Experian / Cic Triple Advantage / Credit report scam!
So, here's how the scam works....the Federal Government encourages certain companies to provide free credit reports. And Jane Public goes online and finds a company called 'FreeCreditReport.com' or 'Experian.com' [also known as: CIC Credit Monitor SVC; Consumer Info; Consumer Information; creditmatters.com; freecreditreport.com; homeradar.com; I Place; I Play Innings; QSpace.com] and enters their credit card number for their 'free' credit report.
At the same time Jane is provided with her free report, the company also signs her up for a 'membership' called 'Triple Advantage' or something along those lines. Unaware that she has signed up for this service in the first place, Jane doesn't notice that 'CIC Triple Advantage' is popping up on her credit/bank statement, charging her an almost unnoticeable $12.95 a month.
When it finally occurs to her that money is being taken for a service she didn't sign up for, Jane realizes that she needs to cancel this 'membership' immediately. But how? She didn't intentionally sign up for it in the first place, and she doesn't necessarily remember which website she used, so how does she cancel it? Calling the bank doesn't do anything, because it's a direct withdrawal that the bank has no control over, so what can Jane do?
There is a number following the charge, as listed on her account. Jane calls that number and waits, and waits, and waits for a human to pick up. If she waits long enough, someone does pick up, and proceeds to tell her: "We're so sorry you want to cancel your membership with us, it's a shame to lose you as a customer. We can refund the last two months of your membership, but that's the best we can do." Jane might settle for this, thinking 'phew, at least it's done now,' or she can call that same number and ask to speak to the manager. [The number that works, as of 3.21.07, is 877.481.6826.]
My suggestion to Jane Public? Don't let them take your money. This company, under the parent company Experian, just settled a class-action law suit with the Federal Trade Commission for illegal business practices for this exact same scam. They are in the wrong, not you. Be polite, but firm. (As someone that works in customer service, being rude to the representative will get you nowhere.) Make them aware that you know of the lawsuit, that their business practices are illegal, and that you will not be accountable for their scam.
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