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Get Out of FreeCreditReport.com’s “Triple Advantage”

This article was written by in Consumer. 12 comments.


FreeCreditReport.com is the heavily advertised company that offers “free” credit reports (if you sign up for a trial offer for their monitoring service with a monthly fee. They have huge billboards at Shea Stadium, where I will be tomorrow to see the (currently) first-placed Mets.

Keep in mind that the place to get truly free credit reports, three times per year (once from each bureau) as mandated by law is AnnualCreditReport.com. FreeCreditReport.com took clear advantage of the media surrounding the law when it was introduced a few years ago and convinced many people to sign up for “free” credit reports. Many customers feel deceived because they didn’t realize that they were at the wrong website and that they signed up to pay a monthly fee after a trial period.

Lately, FreeCreditReport.com has improved their disclosure, and the company is still a reminder that you should either read and understand all fine print before signing your name to anything or accept the consequences of ignorance.

Nevertheless, if you feel you were duped into signing up for FreeCreditReport.com’s Triple Advantage, you can still request refunds for what you’ve been charged. This is another reminder to check your bank and credit card statements at least once a month so charges like this don’t go unnoticed.

Here is Consumerism Commentary reader akk’s experience with getting refunds from FreeCreditReport.com.

I called this number to cancel my account and get a refund: 877-481-6826. First thing I did was ask for the name of the person I was talking to and her employee ID number. I told her that I wanted to cancel my account and get a full refund. The lady said that she would cancel my account but I could not get a refund.

She said that this automatic subscription is stated clearly on the web site, blah blah blah blah blah. I told her that I wasn’t going to stop until I got a full refund. She then offered me a one month refund. I told her that was great, but again, I am not going to stop until I get a full refund and I wanted to speak with her supervisor. She put me on hold to talk with her supervisor, then voila, I got a full refund.

For me, they weren’t that bad when I actually called. Just don’t let them try to convince you that you do not deserve a full refund. Just keep demanding a full refund and hopefully they will do it.

At this point, FreeCreditReport.com understands they’re in a tight spot and they want to improve their reputation. They may be more willing to provide refunds even if the company is not completely at fault in all cases. From a business perspective, it may be better to provide the refunds now than deal with angry consumer groups.

Published or updated July 25, 2008. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar pidgeon92

My husband got suckered into this one, too. I didn’t realize it for a few months, I thought it was from my Equifax account. Anything that requires you to end a credit card number is bad.

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avatar Benjamin

Hey Flexo,

You’re absolutely right about Free Credit Report exploiting the annual credit report legislation! I’ve been warning people about FCR for a long time and think that their service is junk!

On the other hand, they have some of the most talented “song” writers in the advertising world!

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avatar Matt

Negative option plans irritate me to no end. The whole premise of their business model is that you will forget to “not buy” their product or service, thus “buying” it. If the product or service was worth buying in the first place, they would not have to really on this sort of technique. Than of course when you actually remember to cancel, you have to deal with their BS.

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avatar smey

I had the same experience today. FreeCreditReport.com would not refund my 1 month charge of $14.95 after a long and irritating phone call. The representative would not honor my request for a supervisor either. I called my credit card company to dispute the charge. They said that they get calls about this all the time and offered to give me a one time “courtesy credit” of $14.95. I was glad to get the credit, but filed a report with the better business bureau, hoping that this will make FreeCreditReport.com more accountable in the future. It’s only 15 bucks, but it’s the principal of the thing. They shouldn’t be allowed to continue deceiving people this way.

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avatar Jay Smith

I myself normally get online memberships after i sincerely read and understand the terms and conditions of any online memberships and websites. In fact, before i signed up for my credit monitoring, score monitoring and SSN monitoring, i called the customer care first to verify all the information i have understood posted in their website. had with them for almost 3 years now. I was paying $14.95 before and now i am only paying $7.95 because if me being a long time member already. Plus they also added new benefit on my account which saves me a lot of money each time i order online my credit report and my credit score. the key here, we must read the terms and conditions posted on the site just like any sites online like Flexo’s site. :)

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avatar Rachel

Oh these guys are still at it. I went through EyeMyCredit.com that I thought was its own credit company, allowing you a 30 day free trial. Nope. They redirect you to FreeCreditReport.com right in the middle of registration in a way that most people won’t even notice, where the trial is now 7 days + 48 hours for Experian (but they’ll charge you prior anyway). EyeMyCredit’s number is FreeCreditReport’s. It’s not even a full website. If you call FCR they’ll tell you they have no idea who EyeMyCredit is and that they are not affiliated with ‘em. Yeah right. My charge was $12.95, but I don’t care. This is complete and utter nonsense.

I reported them to IC3.gov and BBB. I took the advice here and called 4 times until I got a refund. It’s “currently processing” so we’ll see if I get it. Why do we even have to pay for this crap? It’s horrible how these companies try to scam people left and right.

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avatar Al 58

I had the same ugly experience. FreeCreditReport.com would not refund my 1 month charge of $14.95 after my insistence on the phone to a very soft voice representative that would not move from her standing point. Following some experiences I will call inmediately my credit card company to dispute the charge. As many say, it is only $14.95 but it made me angry to fall victim of such scam. I am ready to file a report with BBB, or to go any direction in order to stop these deceiving practices.

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avatar leiterside

I had similar dealings with the company in question. The reactions I got for my efforts reflect the idea that maybe freecreditreport.com is getting the message that they cannot operate with impunity anymore. My efforts were quick (less than a day, start to finish) and successful, noted as follows:

Initial Contact 5:45 am 10-3-08

To: Support@FreeCreditReport.com (The “Contact Us” email address on the site)
Subject: No Subject

You charged my account for “Triple Advantage” membership. I did not sign up for it, you don’t list me as a member, and you have yet to show me a single credit report!! You “alerted” me to the fact that I got a student loan! I expect a full refund and remove me from any list you have me on for any type of sales or solicitations. I am SO reporting your practices to the FCC and the BBB if this foul up isn’t straightened out in the next 48 hours. Be aware that I am aware of the complaints against your organization already.

Sincerely,
Robert XXXXXXX

Their response: 12:36 pm 10-3-08

Dear Robert XXXXXXX:

Thank you for writing. As part of our comprehensive security policy, we need to verify your identity first before we can disclose account specific information. In order for us to check your records, please respond to this message with the following information:

. Your registered email address that we have on file
. The last four digits of your Social Security number

This information will help us address your inquiry more quickly and efficiently.

Sincerely,

Johanna F.
Customer Care Representative

My Immediately Response: SSN: xxx-xx-1234

At 12:45 pm 10-3-08

Dear Robert XXXXXXXr:

Thank you for writing.

We’re sorry to see you go! We have received your request to cancel your Triple Advantage Monitoring membership.

Your membership has been cancelled as of today October 3, 2008. We initiated a refund of $14.95 to your account. This refund should appear on your next billing cycle.

We hope you enjoyed your Triple Advantage benefits, including the email alerts informing you of key changes on your report. Although the membership may not have been right for you, please remember that we offer an array of instant credit reports. We hope that you will remember us when you need personal credit information in the future.

Thank you for using FreeCreditReport.com.

Sincerely,

Jan-Michael M.
Customer Service Representative

After reading the info and testimonials on your site I expected a battle, but was pleasantly surprised to receive that last.

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avatar luke

i just got off the phone with them and it was relatively easy to cancel although “Levi” did try to convince me to continue paying them $14.95 per month for that which she kept referring to as Free Credit Report.com. Seriously, i think it was entirely lost on her the irony of it all.

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avatar kerri

they got both me and my husband and my husband was in bootcamp when they wont refund the money i have been nice i haVE BEEN MEAN and i found a sulation you have got to tellthem that you are gonna speek to better business bureau but you also have to get the C.R.G s e-mail address and write him
kerri

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avatar Tom

I as well got suckered into this scam. Like all others, I guess it is our responsibility to do the research prior to doing business with FCR. Their rating is a F on BBB.

I spent quite a few 30-hour phone calls with them in the last 3 months to cancel the account, all to no avail. In the end, I am resorting to my credit card company to place a “block” on this unscrupulous company in order to avoid further charges. It seems they never really cancel your account and can re-start billing you for any number of reasons after a cancellation.

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avatar I wish to cancel immediately the $31.95 monthly which will acrue if I do not ask to do so within 7 days...that would be May 30th ;12

I;ve never done this before and NEVER WILL AGAIN….get DUPED for a “free triple credit report …they asked that I cancel within 7 days or this amount will accrue each month … I do not wish to continue and according to what has been said so far, if asking for this removal; stoppage; cancellation, etc. that i would not be charged. But right now I’m not trusting anything or anybody. I WANT OUT AND I WANT OUT IMMEDIATELY SO THAT I DO NOT GET CHARGED. Please see that this is done. THANK YOU. Kathleen S. Lawson, Jamestown, NY 14701

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