I was sloth-like meandering on the net one evening. I clicked through on the “Free Credit Report” thing. To get the free report, I had to submit a credit card number. More than a month ago, that card’s statement had a charge on it. One that I did not agree with. Got it reversed, cancelled the subscription.
30 Days, more like 31 or 32, go by. Next card statement, there’s that number, again. And the charge. I call the card company. They refer me to the “Free Credit Report” company.
Oh this gets better, the charge is merely $12.95, or so. For a service that is billed as free, and I cancelled the subscription.
30 days ago.
The first transfered call went something like this, “Click, click, buzz” then the usual, “This call maybe recorded or monitored to insure quality control.”
Then Steve, “Hi, my name is Steve, how can I help you?”
I enumerate the problem then tell him that I will record the call, too.
He told me he had to hang up if I was recording the call.
I enumerated the problem again, and he told me he was hanging up and I should call back.
It’s company policy to hang up if the caller says he or she is recording the call. But it’s okay if company records the call?
I did call back. I got an offshore operator – not a native English speaking person – and I did record the call, and I did get satisfactory resolution, plus a confirmation notice that I was being credited with the amount.
And I got it all on a recording.
I regularly record phone calls. I taped client calls for years. Doing live readings in the past, I used special 20-minute tapes. I’d be a little worried if a “psychic” or any other professional was adverse to being taped – or recorded.
At a show, when I’m working, like Austin and Chicago, or El Paso, Seattle, &c in the fall, I record my readings and burn a CD on the spot. All part of the package. I just wish I was fast enough to catch that part about “This call is being monitored for your protection,” and I wish I had caught “Steve” saying he was instructed to hang up if the call was recorded, right after the recorded message saying the call was being recorded – yeah, right, for my own protection.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, this is considered a deceptive practice. (That complaint as linked? “For Release: August 16, 2005.”)
Two years later – and the scam remains the same.