From time to time I have stressed that we should always check out a new product or business before we entrust our money to strangers online. I try to be consistent with such cautions myself, but then I get busy dealing with the many businesses that I know well already, and slip up.
That’s what happened a few weeks ago. I saw a full page ad online offering a free sample of a weight loss product called Supreme Garcinia Cambogia. (I could spare a few pounds, but mainly I was curious because if I like a product I can recommend it from my websites). The sample was free but the shipping was $5.00.
Oh-well, sounds fair enough, I thought. So I paid the $5.00 US (a little over $7.00 CDN when it came out of my account). I was surprised to get just the one bottle instead of the two the web page had indicated. But then it arrived a day or so later.
What began to worry me though, was a couple of days later, when I was checking my account online, I discovered that $156. and change taken out. I decided to cancel this deal immediately, and called the 800 number given on their website. I had to give the email with which I had signed up, and got an immediate notice that my account was cancelled.
But it wasn’t! Another couple of days and $139 was charged and taken out of my account. I tried calling that 800 number again several times, and each time got a cheery recording telling me that my email was no longer in their system, thanks for cancelling. Then the recording hung up on me.
No live person to reason with!
I should mention that my Global Payment Card is actually a debit card so I’ve always treated it as a checkbook. When I use it I make sure the money is in my account as it will be withdrawn as soon the purchase is processed.
At that point I began to worry and called my Credit Union. I was advised to come in as I would need to sign some claims forms. The woman handling this was very kind, but it was not a frequent duty of hers so she had to check each step very carefully.
She called me the next day to ask for a full documentation of all that I had said and done with this company, and to send the samples back and bring in a receipt that I had done so. I did all that. I had written a letter just a couple of nights before, so I included a copy of that with direct quotes in the emails correspondence.
The next day this kind woman called again, very apologetic, but since it was done with a debit card, they could not get my money back for me. And by now I’d lost and spent on postage over $300!
I had threatened in my letter that I would publish my experience on the internet and warn people about this scam. When I went online to see if anyone else had experienced this, I was surprised to discover that this scam is being run from a number of websites, each with similar but different domain names, and that wherever anyone had posted a report of their problem there were many, MANY comments below from others who had also had a bad experience with this crazy gambit.
So I can take some small comfort in the fact that I’m not the only one, and I believe this is the first time since I came online in 1999, that I’ve actually lost money on a scam.
Maybe my letter and emails will come before the eyes of someone with some sense of morals and good ethics, but I’ve lost hope of that, I think.
My present recourse is to put it into God’s hands and trust Him to make up my loss to me, especially since I am now taking pains to share my story as a warning to others.
This web page I found does a good job of explaining how the scam works: supplementpolice.com/garcinia-cambogia-free-trial-offers-scam Do take care, and alert others too!
Incidentally, if you get into a good health food store, you can get this Garcinia Cambogia product there, and NOT get scammed.
April/20/16 – Update: I’m happy to report that the two amounts of money that were taken from me via my Global Payment card have been reversed and put back. These were happy surprises! I can only praise God, because from all appearances it was hopeless. If you should find yourself in such a situation, I suggest you work at it as far as you can – and ask God to help.
Ruth Marlene Friesen
The Responsible One