In November, My husband was contacted by who they claimed to be a subsidiary of 'Citibank Mastercard'. They gave him the spiel that all we had to do was authorize them to withdraw 299.00 dollars from our bank account because we were already approved for a 5,000 dollar credit limit. When my husband asked how that could be, the gentleman on the phone replied that my husband had filled out one of thier credit applications online, and since it was approved, they are giving him the opportunity to gain the 5,000 credit card.
My husband was a bit leary to give out our bank info, so the gentleman politely offered to call again after my husband had a chance to speak to me about it. And as scheduled, someone contacted my husband on said date and time to confirm. My husband, having claimed bankruptcy 3 years ago, has been rebuilding his credit nicely, and assumed this was just another benefit to how well he's been doing. So, as I'm sure others have done with this same company, he gave our bank information to them.
Just to 'calm' his worries so to speak, they gave him a customer service number,a 'hotline' number,as well as a second customer service line, and told him that he could get in touch with a live operator if he had any questions. He was also told that the money would be withdrawn that following monday morning.....And again, right on schedule, they removed the money from our account exactly as they said they would.
The money was withdrawn from our account on the 1st of November 2004. We've seen nothing, heard nothing, recieved NOTHING. We've tried contacting the company, but only get a recording. I've found out that they also have a company in Boston, or a call center there at least, because when my husband looked on the caller ID from the second phone call, it said 'Boston, Mass' but no number.And its funny, each number we were given gives the same type of answering message.
I've left numerous messages on thier answering machine/voice mail, yet we've recieved no response. Finally about 2 weeks ago, I reported them to the Better Business Bureau, and I'm letting them get in touch with the company for me. At least I know if I have to take this to small claims court, I'll have the BBB behind me if Strategic Credit Educators/Strategic Credit Education dosen't make good on what I feel they've STOLEN from us.
People like this prey on struggling families, I just hope that this has helped at least someone from being scammed and ripped off from this company. Because the bottom line is, these people don't care, they just want your money and have no intentions of giving you anything in return. They knew we had gone through 3 hurricanes, lost our home and had to move, lost all we had. Still they proceeded to sell us something that was a farce. They just wanted to steal our money.
Again, the name of the company is 'Strategic Credit Educators, Strategic Credit Education OR Credit Educators/Education Group' The calls we recieved were from Albany, New York and Boston, Massachusetts. The numbers we were given were 1-866-333-1593,1-866-310-0695 and 1-888-646-8386.
God bless anyone whose been scammed from these crooks.
Amy and Bart
Palm Bay, Florida
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Credit Education Group 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.
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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.