All of a sudden I found that I was getting "welcome packages" from several companies, thanking me for "enrolling" or becoming a "member". The funny thing is, none of these were anything that I would have ordered - example: Maxim for men subscription. Um, I'm a woman; why would I order that? Another was for an auto club, like Triple A. (I would not have signed up for that because my husband owned his own hauling truck!)
I got suspicious, and started calling these companies. Every one of them told me that a certain "marketing agency" had sent in my order, at my request. (Remember, I had ordered NONE of these things.)
Well, to make a long story short, I was finally able to get the name of this so-called "marketing agency". Turns out they were some outfit operating out of Florida.
When I called to notify them that I had NOT ordered anything, they swore that I did, and that they had proof. Here's the most shocking thing: They told me that they had me on a taped phone call and that they would play it back for me. I nearly fell over when I heard it! It was a BLATANTLY falsified phone call with a woman's voice, not mine, saying "yes" each time the marketer asked if she'd like to sign up for something. You could easily tell that they had "cut and pasted" voices into a phone conversation. I was LIVID! They had even gotten my credit card number somehow. I do not know how they got it either, because I use this card ONLY for purchasing items online, and I always purchase from secure sites. Obviously, something wasn't secure somewhere.
Straightening out this mess wasted a lot of my time last summer. I had to cancel my credit card, contact all these different companies to get my name taken off their records and credits back to my account, etc. I was hoping our state's attorney general's office could help me go after these guys, but they were really no help at all, so I'm sure this bunch of crooks is STILL freely operating out there.
As you read, unfortunately the authorities have failed to address the crooks operating the marketing company, so watch out!
Did you catch a very important point Becky made in regards to her credit card? Becky stated that the card the items had been charged to is a card she uses only for online purchases. That is a very smart tip for all who make purchases online. This way it provides a card holder the opportunity to identify how their card had been compromised. As she also stated she is very cautious to make sure the site is always a secure line when she does make a purchase online, but as she mentioned somehow it was compromised somewhere. To ensure you are making a purchase on a secure line you should be able to see the little icon that resembles a pad lock show up in your taskbar. Be sure you proceed with caution when making any purchase with your credit cards. The con artists are out there waiting to see what new scheme they can come up with.
Thank you Becky for sharing your story for our readers! If you establish a new blog please provide us with a link to send our readers there.