IAP (Internet Access Provider) Scams
IAP, cellphone and cable companies, e.g. Telus and Shaw, are adopting two standard scams. They don’t even blush when confronted.
- They phone you up and say that if you switch plans you can get a low introductory rate of only $5 a month. The catch is they don’t tell you that in 6 months they will quietly crank up the rate by $50 a month, then increase it quietly at random times thereafter, hoping you won’t notice because of your convenient electronic bill payment plan that is fully automatic. They never post the precise details of the deal on their website, just the low introductory price. It is like pulling teeth to get the information on the phone and even that verbal guarantee is not worth the paper it is written on.
- They offer some tempting trinket — an iTouch, monitor, router, smartphone… that you don’t really need, free bundled with the deal. If you bite, you will notice that company and its competitors will soon start offering the service at a lower monthly rate. They use this gimmick to lock customers into the old higher rate. When they do lower the monthly price they are offering others, they don’t notify you of the new lower price and, of course, don’t give it to you automatically. If you try to switch, they tell you that you may not. In the fine print you apparently signed up for 3 years or have to pay some whacking huge penalty, higher than the value of the trinket to cancel.
I chastise and then hang up on any telemarketer who offers me any introductory deal. They might as well say, I represent an unscrupulous company, who if you survive this scam, will nail you sooner or later, you chump.~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:69)