Report: #171310

Complaint Review: CBT Direct - SkillSoft

  • Submitted: Wed, January 11, 2006
  • Updated: Fri, December 31, 2010
  • Reported By: Brooklyn New York
  • CBT Direct - SkillSoft
    25400 US HWY 19 N. Suite 285
    Clearwater, Florida

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

The product this company 'CBT Skillsoft' provides is more about trapping you - not training you. Run as fast as you can from what they promote. The ones whose jobs have just been terminated due to off-shoring after many years of service with a major corporation, are more vulnerable to their coercive skills.

Run from them FAST! It was very clever and deceiving that the first phone call from the sales person began by them giving me the impression they had my powerful resume in front of them. You realize however, after they've gotten your attention, that they're not interviewing you for a job, but setting the stage to ultimately trap you into spending, in my case, $4,500.

Having my resume was the first lie. They definitely were not hiring! Most respectable companies will treat the consumer with respect particularly if the service is reputable. I have not used their product and I simply don't want it. I regret that I didn't RUN! The following is a statement from a letter sent to them requesting that they credit my account with CareCredit:

Please establish decent relations with the consumer by not coercing them and ultimately trapping them into purchasing a product that they have not used and do not want or need.

What they're doing cannot be an acceptable business practice -it resorts to stealing not helping people to get training. Beware!

If they're so successful, why should it be necessary for them to force the consumer into paying for a computer course they don't want. No respectable school or training program would ever do something that nasty. One cannot discontinue using their product if they've never began. $4,500 for what?!!

I'm in the process of contacting CBS / 60 Minutes with the request that they investigate this company for fraud and the techniques they employ to take people's money. It is my hope that The Bad Business Bureau will assist in the investigation as well.

Brooklyn, New York
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/11/2006 07:10 AM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Karl - (USA)

is only available at Ripoff Report!

*Just type in 608350 and it appears as 'Consumer Comment #21' at Ripoff Report #608350.

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#2 Consumer Comment

"HUB SONG"....

AUTHOR: Karl - (USA)

is only available at this website!

*Just type in 411913 and it appears as 'Consumer Comment #55' at Ripoff Report #411913.

P.S. Make sure to stay at this site and type in- NBC, and read the Ripoff Reports and consumer comments for valuable information. Then type in- MERRILL LYNCH, and read those Ripoff Reports and consumer comments too. And don't forget to type in- BANK OF AMERICA, and read as many of those Ripoff Reports as you can, okay?

Thank You


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#3 Consumer Comment

Save your money! Save your credit!

AUTHOR: ConsumerProQuo - (United States of America)

Throughout my bankruptcy, I received weekly calls from these liars, insisting that an $80/hour job awaited me if I took their course.  They "negotiated" a $600 price for the course.  Yeah, just $600.  They even agreed on 12 months, no interest at $50 a month (direct payment, of course - mistake number 2).  After signing their course and software agreement (which contained two little tiny windows of FOUR more pages of clauses in their agreement), I was still hesitant to sign, as I had NO credit, and my job was VERY shaky, thanks to the economic recession.  "Tammy" reassured me that CBT would "work with" me in the event of a financial hardship.

Two months later, after the bankruptcy, business dried up, and I was forced to close the account from which I paid CBT Direct's "tuition" (which was actually a financing contract, even though 4 pages of the agreement could not be printed thanks to their embedding of the additional material within the initial agreement).  I had notified them that I would be unable to make payment, and that the account was closed, which they said that they would note my CBT account, and await news from me that I had improved my situation.

IN THE MEANTIME, CBT DIRECT DENIED ANY ATTEMPTS BY ME TO ACCESS THE COURSE MATERIAL, CUTTING ME OFF FROM ANY ADDITIONAL STUDIES ON THE COURSE I HAD BEEN PAYING FOR.  (I include this statement, because I feel that it bears accentuation, since I did not have access to the uncompleted material, thus eliminating any gain I could have seen from the course material, including CERTIFICATION!)

The following month, I was contacted by CBT because my payment had been denied.  I asked why they had attempted to deduct it from my depleted (and closed) account, and they stated that they HAD to attempt to collect, as past students had lied about accounts being closed, and they had to assure themselves that I was not a liar, despite stating that they would await news from me.  I was curious as to why CBT Direct's past dealings with other students who were unable to pay would prompt such a blatant and disrespectful action, but I was told that it was "none of my business."

30 days later, after losing my car and health coverage due to lack of funds, I received a call from a collection agency asking about the remaining $500 that I supposedly owed CBT Direct.  I was dumbfounded, as I thought I was paying a TUITION, and thought that since I was unable to PAY, that I would just be denied access to the course, just like any other reputable educational institution.  But, alas, I was wrong, because I was dealing with CBT Direct, who does not charge tuition for education, but rather "licensing fees" to their "software" (which I no longer had access to).

Now, many months later, CBT Direct has conveniently used excerpts from my telephone conversations with their representatives to nitpick partial details and twist my own words to use against me with the Better Business Bureau and the New York State Attorney General's Office.  They have conveniently forgotten to mention that in those same recordings is their sales representative insisting that if I sign up and agree to the financing plan, that CBT Direct would work with me in the event of a financial hardship, and would NEVER do ANYTHING that would negatively affect my credit.

They lie.  Straightforward and simply put.  They will say WHATEVER you need to hear to get you to sign the agreement which contains a lot of wording designed to force you to pay, or sacrifice your credit, without regard to your education, welfare, family, or anything other than them getting their money.

Save your money.  Save your credit.  Go elsewhere.  Do NOT work with CBT Direct.  There are MANY more reliable, trustworthy, and caring educational resources out there!
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#4 Consumer Comment

Just Say No and Hang Up!

AUTHOR: John - (U.S.A.)

Do not trust your money with a fly by night fast talking telemarketer. If they are talking real fast like reading off a script, that should be a warning sign. If they make promises that are too good to be true, it probably is. That should be a warning sign. If they play off of your emotions, that should be a warning sign. If they get your first name and keep repeating it to you, that is a warning sign. Don't give them your money. don't sign anything. Just say no and hang up.
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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

What CBT Direct absolutly does not want you to know!!!!

AUTHOR: Scott - (U.S.A.)

What's truly unfortunate is the fact that the identical SkillSoft training programs can by purchased by anyone from places like Univ. of Iowa for a few hundred dollars. That is the single, largest main reason they apply so much pressure upfrount to buy from them right away. The CBT Direct sales people will outright lie to you about some reason their price is where it's at and swear that if you don't buy right away the price is going to go up.

The truth is this: A one year membership to the SkillSoft training purchased through CBT Direct costs $2,400 to $4,500. The amount they charge just depends on how much they think they can get from an individual. The Identical SkillSoft training purchased through Univ of Iowa's web-site costs only $599-. THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE IN THE TRAINING! That is something people need to know. Please, everyone - be aware of this and stop getting ripped off!
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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

CBT Direct Smart Certify SkillSoft Rip-off. Unfortunate, but in most cases this is absolutely true. CBT Direct is a boiler room sales operation

AUTHOR: Scott - (U.S.A.)

It's too bad more people don't research before they commit their hard earned money. Realize that there is no one group more vulnerable than another when it comes to falling prey to their system.

First of all, CBT Direct is not a part of SkillSoft even though that's what the sales people lead individuals to believe. CBT Direct's people attempt to use SkillSoft's reputation as a large multi-national, publicly traded company so it's easier to con people. CBT Direct is one of many resellers of some of their training.

CBT Direct is a boiler room sales operation reminiscent of the actual movie Boiler Room. Their sales people are highly trained in coercion, manipulation and psychology. The only thing that matters is getting your money and getting it fast. The object is to get your money before you can research, think, compare, shop, talk to your spouse, etc, because they know if you take time to think you will realize your being set up. And being that the sales person gets 21% of your money, they're very, very motivated.

You used the word trapped and it's very accurate. From the first telephone call you get from them everything is scripted to lead you into their trap. Nothing is off limits in terms of manipulating you. They'll insult you, guilt you, embarrass you, talk about your family, kids, anything, they'll be outright dishonest to get you to commit quickly. Once you do commit as I sure your finding out there is little if nothing you can do to get out of it. CBT Direct was formally SmartCertify which means they've been doing this for quite a while. They've pretty much developed a fool proof system that consumers can't get around.

I'm currently in the process of sending their sales scripts, memos and actual recordings of some of their sales people to Florida Dept of Commerce. Good luck. I hope you get your money back but it's not likely.
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