My husband and I decided to go online the other day (Dec. 19, 2004) to look for a new TV, as ours "died" over the weekend. Long story short, we stumbled upon the website circuitmicro.com -- WHAT A SCAM!
To our knowledge, we were just filling out an application to see if we could get approved for financing. During the application process, it asked us for our checking out number and routing number of our bank. That should have been a red flag right there, however, we gave them the information as they stated they only needed it to verify that we had an active checking account.
After doing that, it said we were approved and all we had to do was wait for an email to be sent to us in the next 1 to 10 business days. That didn't sound right to me so, I tried to contact the company to just go ahead and tell them we were no longer interested and to cancel our application so their time wouldn't be wasted.
On their website, it says that the only way we can contact them is via email. I tried that, however, they never responded. I didn't think much of it until I was checking our bank balance on Dec. 20, 2004 and found out that $39.96 was electronically withdrawn from our account by Circuit Micro.
Needless to say, we were pretty pissed when we found this out as, like we mentioned previously, we were just trying to fill out an application for credit approval -- we NEVER authorized them to take funds from our account. Thus, I have been on the phone all day today (Dec 21, 2004) trying to figure this whole mess out.
I have emailed them at least 4 times to date and still have yet to receive a response. On their website, they have a spot for "Live Online Help" which is NEVER available! Furthermore, they list their address but state that a customer service phone number is not available but "coming soon"!
However, upon calling directory assitance and giving them the address, I find out that the address (25422 Trabuco Road, #105-288, Lake Forest, CA 92630) doesn't even belong to Circuit Micro it's actually the address of Mail Boxes Etc. whom the company has a mailbox with.
Thus, I got Mail Boxes's number and called them and explained our situation. Thankfully, they were able to give me Circuit Micro's phone number 888-913-6100. Unfortunately, this did us no good what-so-ever.
I have called all day and everytime, I have gotten transfered to voice mail. There are 3 different menu options to choose from and all of them go straight to voice mail as "no one is availble to answer the call". You can't even leave a message in the customer service mailbox because it's so full it's not even accepting anymore messages!
Currently, we have filed a "dispute" with our bank to try to get our money back who knows how long that will take, though. Furthermore, if we have not been contacted by the company by tomorrow morning (Dec. 22, 2004), we will be filing a fraud report with our local law enforcement agency.
Hopefully, all of this information will help anyone else out there. We'd hate for someone to end up in the same boat we're in!
Carlie & Jared
Fort Stewart, Georgia
U.S.A. EDitor's Suggestions on how to get your money back! HERE IS WHAT RIP-OFF REPORT SUGGESTS YOU DO:
Go to your bank within 60 days of the charge, or as soon as you know about the charge, don't delay, and tell them that there has been fraudulent activity within your account. Explain that you wish to file a dispute, and demand that they assist you in accordance with Federal Regulation E.
According to the majority of victims interviewed by Rip-off Report, those who immediately called their banks to dispute the charges did not get very far. Many victims got the following responses from their banks: we could not do anything for you or you waited too long; it has been more than 60 days.
If the bank is says that you have waited too long, explain to them how you called their 800 number as soon as the charges were found, and were told by the bank that nothing could be done. Remind the bank that they failed to assist you properly at the 800 #, and instead, provided you with an inadequate explanation of your right to dispute. Tell the bank that it's their fault time has expired, and since they gave you the wrong info to begin with, they will just have to deal with it, take the loss and reverse the charges.
Tell them the truth; this was unauthorized and your account was NOT to be charged! Keep emphasizing how you never authorized anything! Direct them to the hundreds of victims reports that were filed on Rip-off Report.com. And if you're at the bank, walk them over to their computer and make them go to this site! If you are on the phone with them, tell them you will wait while they access this site! Either way, be persistent! DO NOT TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER!
Let them know nicely, that you were advised to Report them (the Bank) and this situation to the Banking Commission in your state. Since each state has a different name for the agency/controller over banks, find that name before you call or get to the bank so you can throw it in their face. The more knowledgeable you appear to be, the further you will get.
And just continue to demand the Federal Regulation E form! The bank CAN, MUST and WILL reverse the charge! But, you must be persistent; ask to speak to the supervisor or the area manager for all the branches in the state.
Let the bank personnel know you are meeting with the media later in the day, that you would much rather they do the right thing (as most other banks have) by looking at the complaints and immediately reversing the charge(s) to your account; no matter how long ago it was. Be sure to call the Media if necessary so you are telling the truth.
If you have to, be loud (but nice) in front of other customers. If you are just calling by phone, the above tactics should still work. The bank can easily fax or mail to you the Federal Regulation E dispute form. CHARGES TO YOUR CREDIT CARD
If the charge was to your credit card (not debit card, check card, or checking account), contact the credit card company as soon as possible to request a dispute form. Consumers usually have a little longer to dispute fraudulent credit card charges (up to 6 months), but it is better to act right away. In this type of situation, credit card disputes are usually successful since fraudulent companies often won't contest the disputed charge. In rare cases, credit card companies will review disputes, but refuse to reverse the charges. If this occurs, complain to a manager and let them know you will be filing a report here.
Remember Don't let them get away with it! Make sure they make the Rip-off Report .. The more Reports filed on a Company or individual, the more likely it is that the authorities, media and attorneys will want to take action.
And good luck Let us know how you do!
ED Magedson Founder, Rip-off Report.com & Author of www.ripoffrevenge.com
Don't let them get away with it.
Make sure they make the Rip-off Report!
We are not lawyers.
We are not a collection agency.
We are Consumer Advocates. ...the victims' advocate
WE are Civil and Human Rights Activists
We are a Worldwide Consumer Reporting News Agency ...by consumers, for consumers CLICK HERE to read about Credit Card Scams... find out how to get your money back. *Rip-off Report Investigation provides valuable information.