On March 26,'09, Mrs. Brooks received & opened Verizon telephone monthly billing; surprised to see new item "Enhanced Long Distance Service" added for $18.63 per month plus assoc US taxes. Called Verizon customer service (CS) same day to object & have removed. Verizon says NO, explains this is a pass-thru billing from a 3rd party firm for services we 'obviously' contracted for directly; we would have to deal with them for cancelation. Verizon CS said Brookses had received 2 emails from 3rd party with offer and threat to implement service & monthly charge on default if Brookses did not reply to email. Neither Mr. or Mrs Brooks ever saw/received said emails. Mrs. Brooks employed female screaming tactic of negotiating to obtain commitment by Verizon to cancel 2nd month and-on. Mr. Brooks then called Verizon CS and dealt with CS Supervisor to get first month (all charges) cancelled. Mr. Brooks ran internet searches for 3rd party firm (Enhanced Long Distance, Inc.) and history of complaints about this "service." Found ample history dating back to at least November 2008 (e.g. ripoffreport.com). Received email from Verizon CS suggesting we confirm cancellation by visiting enhancedlongdistance.com; a dead end as it shows "Under Construction". Verizon email also revealed the billing came from Brandarama.com. Internet reveals that is a 'service mark' of Active Response Group Inc (ARG). ARG is located in New York, Florida and Colorado, & dba oridian.com. Brooks could not find parent of Active, but it owns rewardsparade.com and householdsavingsclub.com among others. ARG business model employs tactics called "lead generation solutions" & "creates monetization opportunities" in their online marketing services. Some internet assertions that ARG launches billings automatically when internet curious 'register' at some sites; no confirmations found. Mr. Brooks believes the billing through Verizon was illegal due to ARG's use of email 'no reply' default 'authorizations'.
Ken (Rivers) Brooks