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Windows 7: How 'free trial' web offers can be credit card traps

16 Dec 2012   #1

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 
How 'free trial' web offers can be credit card traps

Quote:
The offer was tempting: I could read exclusive online articles about my beloved Red Sox on ESPN Insider, for just $44.95 a year. And to be sure that it would be money well spent, I could sign up for a seven-day free trial. I bit, coughing up my credit card number as part of the deal.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t get off the hook.
How 'free trial' web offers can be credit card traps | PCWorld

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Dec 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium x86 Service Pack 1 - Linux Mint Mate 14 x64
 
 

Microsoft also offer Xbox Live at very low monthly rates, and when the offer expires, they begin to charge the full rate without you realizing, it happened to a friend of mine who had to cancel his Gold subscription when he realised he was being charged the full amount.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2012   #3

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Hi there
Beware of some of these offers -- they often say XXX days free trial and then YYY per month -- and YOU HAVE TO SAY YOU WANT TO TERMINATE or your credit card will be charged automatically. -- THE ONUS IS ON YOU TO CANCEL. Shouldn't be but there it is.

Consumer groups should go after these types of deals but the Internet being an International facility - makes enforcement rather difficult especially if the contract is being serviced from some of the more "dodgier Countries".

If I were you -- NEVER EVER pay a SUBSCRIPTION of any sort on the Internet by credit card.

By all means PURCHASE 1-off items / travel etc. via credit card but NEVER use a standard credit card for a subscription or Monthly fees via the Internet.

If you MUST go for these type of deals use a "Pre paid" DEBIT / CREDIT Card -- and if you feel you might be getting stung just empty the card so there's no money left on it.


You can get these types of "Pre Pay" debit / credit cards all over the place -- very handy too as there's no stupid Credit checks or anything and you can top them up at your convenience.

You can get SEVERAL of these so emptying one doesn't mean you can't use another one for something else and these don't go through Experiian / Equifax or any of these other credit reference agencies so there's no data held about you which 3rd parties can get hold of --that's what I like. !!

For instance here's a UK based one which I use when I'm in London -- others in different countries are available too.

Cashplus Prepaid Card – the prepaid credit card alternative with no credit checks | Cashplus

Please though as for ANY Financial product PLEASE Read all the small print though before applying for these cards as they *might* not be suitable for some people.

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Dec 2012   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, Windows 8.1 Pro x64 (on laptop)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by x BlueRobot View Post
Microsoft also offer Xbox Live at very low monthly rates, and when the offer expires, they begin to charge the full rate without you realizing, it happened to a friend of mine who had to cancel his Gold subscription when he realised he was being charged the full amount.
Yeah, and it's also a very big pain to cancel. I know someone who has had the same problem, bad really.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2012   #5

Windows 7 Pro x64 SP1
 
 

FWIW my bank (bank of america) visa card has an option to create a time/money limited special card number which you can set to any amount that you want. also set the expiration date.

It works and the amount that they charged shows up on your regular credit card.

It is called ShopSafe.

Rich
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

The thrust of the article I got is that the trials are very easy to start, and some companies make it nearly impossible to cancel and don't provide instructions to do so.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2012   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit / Service pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Britton30 View Post
The thrust of the article I got is that the trials are very easy to start, and some companies make it nearly impossible to cancel and don't provide instructions to do so.
I would put Sky Tv into that category. I will never again sign up for their 'service' I found them appalling to deal with.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2012   #8

Windows 7 Pro x64 SP1
 
 

That is one of the best options about ShopSafe, You put a dollar amount and an expiration date on the temporary credit card that the bank issues..

If they try to put another charge against it, it will be declined as NSF or not valid.

Rich
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2012   #9

Windows 8 Pro (32-bit)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by richnrockville View Post
That is one of the best options about ShopSafe, You put a dollar amount and an expiration date on the temporary credit card that the bank issues..

If they try to put another charge against it, it will be declined as NSF or not valid.

Rich
Not everyone's banks offer ShopSafe, and they may send a collections agency to hassle you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2012   #10

Windows 7 Pro x64 SP1
 
 

FuturDreamz, Maybe it would help if you asked your bank. Or purchase a temporary visa/mc card that has a card limit. Sometimes the credit card companies don't tell you all the options.

Rich
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 How 'free trial' web offers can be credit card traps





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