On October 23, 2012, I purchased InfoSec Institute's On-line Computer Forensics Course for $1,995.00 along with optional additions for an additional $1,100.00.
I had been in frequent email contact with their sales person for about 11 months because I was waiting for the company to update the materials for the most recent certification exams (specifically the EC-Council CHFI v8). In October of 2012, I recieved an email from my sales contact stating that the course was now revised to meet the new CHFI v8 standards and that there was over 50 hours of content, which seemed to correspond to the standard for a typical 5-day training if it was taken live at a training site. I have done at home trainings from other vendors in the past and that appeared to be in the ball park of those previous courses.
I received the courseware and began to attempt to use it. As time went on, I realized that the course materials were poorly organized and prepared, had technical errors (which I reported) and that the course materials (text & lab manual) did not reflect the online course content very well. Also, it was apparent that the number of hours of training seemed to be less than expected and that the course content did not adhere to the syllabus of the EC-Council CHFI v8 certification.
I actually timed the video courseware that was sent on DVD (which, by the way, did not match the content of the on-line portal). The video on DVD content was roughly 9.5 hours and the small amount of additional content via the on-line portal may add about an hour. That is nowhere near the 50 hours claimed in the email I was provided by the sales person or the "Over 35 hours of live recorded streaming video" that is stated on their web page (http://www.infosecinstitute.com/courses/computer_forensics_training_online.html)
On 12/17/2012, I emailed the sales person expressing my disappointment with the course content quality and quantity. I requested the name and email of someone at the company that I should contact. She provided a contact to forward my complaint to.
On December 27, 2012, I sent an email to the contact detailing my disappointment and giving examples of the issues and technical errors in the course. I requested that they refund $1,600 of the $3,099 that was spent and I offered to return the materials and allow them a reasonable refurbishment fee since I had written a few notes in the spiral bound manuals and some pages may need to be replaced. I felt that that $1600 represented cost of the courseware since the charge of $1,995 included the cost of a certification exam that I intend to take.
Having received no response to this email as of January 10, 2013, I resent the email to the contact and copied my sales rep. I included a note that I said that I would appreciate it if they would at least respond to let me know that they had received my complaint.
On 1/22/2013, having received no response, I sent an email to to the sales contact requesting the contact information and mailing address of a company principal to whom I could send a certified letter detailing my complaint. Again, no response was received.
On January 31, 2013 I filed a complaint with the Chicago Better Business Bureau. They were unable to get a response until 3/7/2013, after their final notice was sent. The response was simply there are no refunds once the course is taken.
After additional back and forth during March, they would only offer credit towards another course and that their statements of the number of hours included the time it would take me to work on the labs.
Obviously, why would I want another course from a company that materially misrepresented the course they had already sold me? Also, again the web site still continues to misrepresent the course as of this date (4/14/2013). It still says that there are "Over 35 hours of live recorded streaming video" after this whole process. (Reference: http://www.infosecinstitute.com/courses/computer_forensics_training_online.html).
The Better Business Bureau has since closed the case since they appear to feel that offering another course that I have no interest in is a sufficient response to false advertising and the company does not want to face up to their obligation to provide the product they represented to me and still represent, falsely, to others. Go figure.
I have since investigated similar training from Career Academy (www.careeacademy.com) and confirmed that the EC-Council training they provide consists of at least 45 hours of video, so that seems to be the norm.