Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Ecommerce Scams: Hundreds Of Well-Known Sites Scam Customers, Report Shows

Senator Rockefeller released the results of an investigative report into "Aggressive Sales Tactics on the Internet and Their Impact on American Consumers" in advance of a hearing on the subject by the US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

The research examines "controversial e-commerce business practices that have generated high volumes of consumer complaints" and focused on sales tactics that "charge millions of American consumers for services the consumers do not want and do not understand they have purchased," according to the Staff Report.

A controversial practice known as "post-transaction marketing" was at the center of the research into the e-commerce business practices.

TechCrunch offers context on how "post-transaction marketing" works:

Background: hundreds of well known ecommerce companies add post transaction marketing offers to consumers immediately after something is purchased on the site. Consumers are usually offered cash back if they just hit a confirmation button. But when they do, their credit card information is automatically passed through to a marketing company that signs them up for a credit card subscription to a package of useless services. The "rebate" is rarely paid. Huffington Post

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