How to Get Your Money Back From The "Freecreditreport.com" Scam

How it Began

Several weeks ago I was watching a commercial with an overly catchy tune sung by a man with a guitar about how he married a girl neck deep in debt and now they are living in his wife's parent's basement. Obviously concerned for my own financial standing I decided to take this addictivly irritating muscians offer and check my credit report at "freecreditreport.com". I went through the registration process and signed away all of my personal information (SSN, Home phone, Credit Card Number, Address, Darkest Secrets, etc...) I suppose I should have felt concerned when I was asked to enter my credit card number, but hey, they have commercials on the T.V., they have to be legitimate, right?

After giving up everything I know to this website, I am finally rewarded with a page that I would only assume would be telling me my credit score. Boy was I wrong. AFTER giving all of my information, I am brought to a page that tells me I must wait a few weeks for an activation code to be sent to me in the mail before I can check my score. "But what if I need to take out an enormous loan tomorrow?!" I thought to myself. A few weeks wait is unacceptable. I did a little research and found a site named www.annualcreditreport.com which will give you your credit report immediately.

Two days ago as I was checking my bank account I noticed a suspicious charge of $14.95 by a company by the name of CIC Triple Advantage. After a quick google search I found that this is the company that owns "freecreditreport.com" and that they were charging me for my "free" credit report, which to this point in time I had never received (In fact I had never even received my "activation code" in the mail, so my account was not even activated). This was a major WTF moment, and for the next few moments I will be explaining to you how I got my $14.95 back, and hopefully save you from making the same mistake that I did.

How to Get Your Refund

Step 1: Call Triple Advantage/Contact your Bank

Step 2: File a Report with the Better Business Bureau (if necessary)

Step 3: Get your actual Free credit report

Step 1: Call Triple Advantage

Triple Advantage has a strict phone cancellation only policy. To make things even more difficult the person you talk to may tell you they are not authorized to give refunds (this is what happened to me), but don't worry, just follow this guide, be honest, keep your cool, and you should get your $14.95 back in no time.


Get out a pad of paper and some of your personal information (SSN, Address you registered to freecreditreport.com with, your phone number, etc). They may ask you a few questions to verify your identity, the pad of paper is to help you!

Call the toll free CIC Triple Advantage and follow the automated system to contact you with a representative to cancel your account (877) 481-6826.

Things to remember during the phone call:

  • You were unaware that your account was going to be charged.
  • Stay calm.
  • They know how many times you viewed your credit report, so if you honestly have not looked at it more than once you are still entitled to your money back.
  • Stay calm.
  • If they tell you they are unauthorized to preform a FULL refund, ask to speak with the supervisor.
  • Stay calm.
  • IMPORTANT: Whip out that pad of paper and write down the name of the supervisor you are speaking to.
  • If you are still receiving trouble, inform them that you already know that many people routinely receive their money back for similar events and you will submit a formal complaint with the Better Business Bureau if you need to. (this is usually the deal breaker)
  • Ask for the refund confirmation number, write this down as well, record the date.
  • BE SURE TO CANCEL YOUR ACCOUNT

As a precaution, now would be a good time to contact your bank and let them know about your situation.

If you are unable to get them to agree to give you your refund, or it has been longer than the amount of time the supervisor gave you for your refund to be received (usually 7-10 days) you have no choice but to move on to step 2.


File a Report with the Better Business Bureau

Yes, it has come to this, ridiculous.

Remember that pad of paper that I had you write in? Here's where it comes in handy. You will need to file a complaint with the BBB. Freecreditreport.com generally responds to BBB complaints with full refunds.

Step 3: Get your actual Free credit report

There is such a thing as a free credit report, but the site you want to go to is annualcreditreport.com. You are given one free credit report per year from this site.

WARN YOUR FRIENDS

Freecreditreport.com is not all bad. If you are a person who wants to check your credit report on a regular basis, it is great for you, but for the rest of us who are only curious to see it once a year it's faulty registration and wording make it out to be quite the scam.

So next time you have one of their catchy little jingles stuck in your head, and you're feeling adventurous, don't forget about the hidden strings attached that are a lot harder to forget.

References

Knowzy (2009, March 11). How to Cancel CIC TripleAdvantage. Retrieved March 30, 2009, from Knowzy Web site: http://www.knowzy.com/Personal_Finance/Credit/Credit_Monitoring_Is_A_Rip_Off-StepByStep-Canceling_CIC_TripleAdvantage.htm

Retrieved March 30, 2009, from CIC Triple Advantage Scam Web site: http://www.cancelcictripleadvantage.com


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Comments 22 comments

bill komissaroff profile image

bill komissaroff 7 years ago from Portland O

I hope you eventually did get the refund? 

I knew something had to be "fishy" with this so-called "free" service.  They have to pay for all of that advertising somehow, right?

On another note, I read a story about their catchy ads.  The singer guy is dutch and doesn't speak a word of English.  He is lipsynching and the words you hear are from someone else. 

Symbolism of the entire fraud that the whole company alledgedly is...


sophieqd profile image

sophieqd 7 years ago

How to Get Your Money Back From The Freecreditreportcom Scam

Great info I really will think about this. Thanks for sharing.


"B" profile image

"B" 7 years ago from Portland, OR Author

Actually I just checked my bank and the refund went through today! :)


sophieqd profile image

sophieqd 7 years ago

How to Get Your Money Back From The Freecreditreportcom Scam

Thank you very much for this hub! It's really very useful.. I appreciate it very much and will follow your advice!


sophieqd profile image

sophieqd 7 years ago

How to Get Your Money Back From The Freecreditreportcom Scam

Great post.


Yasser 7 years ago

Thank you so much for the information.


Happy Guy 7 years ago

Doing this often will lead you to an account block, you wont be able to access any experian website if you abuse the refund policy.

And I hope you will not need an emergency check on your report when you need it most and have already used annualcredit report for that certain year. You could think your a smartass, and get even...Think twice...

Experian is one of the most used credit agencies. Be responsible with your actions especially with your mistakes...

Just a reminder, learn from your mistake, the site is not misleading your just not reading...

Godspeed,

Concerned Fellow


Kristen 7 years ago

Thank you for this information. I disagree with the above comment. I tried to cancel my account within six days, and I was still refused a refund. For all the advertising this company does, it's awful that they scam so many people. I currently have my bank looking into the issue, I've told all my friends and family members my experience, but I haven't filed a claim with Better Business Bureau yet. I will do that now. Thank you again!


Jennifer 6 years ago

I have used Freecreditreport.com several times. As long as you cancel within 30 days, they do not charge you. During that 30 days, you have access to all 3 scores and can dispute incorrect information.


Sad Guy 6 years ago

Happy Guy has to be a shill for the company. Either that or just stupid.


Sadder Guy 6 years ago

Just called for a refund and was put off. I was told by the customer care representative that they were unable to refund, in this case a 24.95 fee that I was totally unaware of - for a purported Triple Advantage upgrade? - and that there were no supervisors available to help me. I went to freecreditreport.com for a free credit report and had used it for less than a day by the time that this had occurred. I am very upset, but do not know what to do other than file with the bbb - which I did - if they will not put me through to a supervisor. They did tell me that I could fax their customer relations, which I also did. Hope it all works out.


capm 6 years ago

Thank you for this! I followed the script and it seemed to work...we'll see. They said they'd reimburse me for $179. I canceled it one time before and they changed their name so it took me awhile to notice on my billing statement. Sneaky bastards!


Vince and Ruth 6 years ago

We purchased this service to find out our score to decide whether or not to purchase a home. The scores came back in the 650 to 660 range for all three agencies. We contacted our broker,realtor, and placed an offer on a home. After placing the 1000 dollar good faith deposit/offer on the weekend our broker ran our credit and ALL the scores were 50 points LOWER than stated on freecreditreport.com. Needless to say we are upset, would never had wasted our time, or anyone elses time had we known this. We are considering our options.


John 6 years ago

Thanks man, I called them first and they said they couldn't refund it, but then I read this page and called back, and got $79 back. What an evil company..


its not a scam 6 years ago

its actually not a scam since it says there that u will only begin a free trial.. i got an account with Freecreditreport.com and they let me know if people have been checkling my credit which lowers my score. one day when i was in london, i received an alert that some Bank in NewYork have been checking my credit and that someone opened an acount under my name. i live in LA and i didn't open that accountin NY. so i called the bank and had that account close and i reported this to freecreditreport.com's fraud department and they even gave me legal advice and they paid for my lawyer. if it aint for Freecreditreport.com i would have been a victim of identity theft. so what is 14.95 a month compared to the peace of mind? and trust me, it would cost a lot more than 14.95 if u were a victim of ID theft.


"B" profile image

"B" 6 years ago from Portland, OR Author

To the above poster I believe you are missing the point.

I never said that the site does not work for people who would like to have the ability to check their credit scores at any time.

The issue I had that I am trying to help others with is I never received my account activation code thus never activated my account but was still charged the $14.95. If I were just lazy and did not cancel after activating I would not have been upset at the company I would have been upset at myself. The fact that my account was not even activated and I was charged is just ridiculous. Why pay for a service you never received?


CreditRepair775 profile image

CreditRepair775 6 years ago

Long story short, the only true free credit reports come from www.annualcreditreport.com and don't include your scores. You'll have to pay for those.


PDXBuys profile image

PDXBuys 4 years ago from Oregon

Good advice. Thanks for posting. Really makes you wonder why we pay tax money to the government regulators if these sorts of businesses are allowed to freely operate and steal from unknowing consumers.


casey 4 years ago

THANK YOU! It took forever just to get the woman to not ask me to reconsider. She had asked me every time I told her what happened. I asked to speak to the supervisor! She put me on hold then came back and said she'll issue my full refund within 7-10 business days. The supervisor didn't even wanna talk (: thank you for this advice! I really appreciate it!


Daniel 4 years ago

I just followed the above procedure and they claim they will now give me a full refund. You have to drop the BBB line as instructed. Originally they tried to refund half, when I told me that was unacceptable they put me on hold for like 10 minutes and then told me they could do a full refund. It really was when I told them I would file a complaint that they started acting reasonably. N


Daniel M. 3 years ago

I have been using their service for two years now, and like the above person said, they have been great. Sure, I have to pay, but I'm always notified immediately if my score changes and if my account changes as well. To me, it's a good thing, I went through a few years of horrible credit and now have a very high score and perfect credit, so to me, it's worth it. I don't think it's a scam, just a service...Although I do agree it's misleading.


Kristen 14 months ago

Thank you for this article. I am a naive college student that does not check bank statements often enough. I have been charged over 500$ for a little over 2 years.I have contacted the BBB as you recommended and hopefully this will resolve.

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