Abusive withdrawals : how to cancel automatic renewals from websites subscriptions?

on 24 September 2014 Withdrawals with 4 comments

Dating websites, slimming products websites, clairvoyance websites, pornographic websites, bidding websites…

Which is, in your opinion, the common element between these websites?

Automatic withdrawals: paid subscriptions that are automatically renewed.

 

How I did find myself subscribed in these sites?

  • By subscribing a test offer at very low price in a short period
  • By entering my bank information to “prove” that I am over 18
  • By paying the shipping cost for a product announced as “free”
  • By buying a few minutes of online or phone consultation (in clairvoyance sites, for exemple)

 

How do subscriptions system work?

 

“I wanted to try this web site for three days and now I’m being levied 35 dollars every month”

“After being asked in a survey, I was told I won free products. I juste needed to pay 5,90$ of shipping cost”

“I subscribed to an adult dating site and I was told to prove I was over 18 by entering my bank information”

 

In some cases, internet users are registered without realizing: they find out the problem when they consult their bank statement.

These websites base their business most of the time in this principle: obtain bank information from their visitors and engage them automatically to a payed subscription which is renewed automatically every month.

 

Is this legal?

Indeed it is. Even if we found it astonishing, most of the time it is legal. Why? Because when clients (internet users) enter their bank information, they accept the TOU (Terms of Use) :

 

« Your subscription will be automatically renewed between stipuleted periods if you do not cancel your account before the end of the validity period »

 

« Do not forget that as you payed your service you accepted the site’s terms of use. Those terms claim that if you do not cancel your order after a 14 days period, you will be held to pay your order, and that if you want to be refunded, you will have to return your product(s) before 30 days following the order.»

 

« If you do not take any action in the test period, the subscription will be automatically confirmed.»

 

How can I cancel my subscription and stop my monthly levies?

 

Every web site has different steps to take: there are not therefore a single answer.

The more a web site complicates the unsubscription process, the more their internet users stay as clients (and pay every month).,

Thereby, some websites impose a certified letter or a fax. Others, invite you to call them (to a surcharged telephone number) to provide you at least one code. The most “honest” will allow you to unsubscribe you directly from your account or by sending a mail to the site administrator.

 

Some advice: you have to receive a confirmation e-mail or regular mail that proves that you are truly unsubscribed. A written evidence that proves that the web site has received your cancellation request.

 

 

And, if I ask my bank not to pay?

 

Internet users give their bank information to a web site (dating website, clairvoyance site, pornographic site…): therefore, these websites have all the information which are necessary (as well as your permission, which is already confirmed by the Terms of Use) to execute regular withdrawals.

Which information? Credit card number, card security code and expiration date.

 

By logic, therefore if the user changes his credit card, these information become false and there is no possibility of doing more withdrawals.

But pay attention : when you accept the Terms of Use, you sign up a genuine digital contract. You have to unsubscribe your membership (= make the website know that you are no longer interested in being a paying member) and not to block payments, because you could be accused of breach of contract and you could be prosecuted by the law.

 

 

Follow these four advices to avoid withdrawals’ scams

 

 

  1. Read systematically the term of use before entering your bank information in a website. It is unpleasant, but it is absolutely necessary and mandatory if you have any doubt
  2. Ask your bank for an e-card (single use card: allows just one payment). Do not hesitate to ask for more information to your bank advisor.
  3. Remember: “Websites are companies. They are here to make money. Their test offers and shipping costs participation will not sustain them.” Find out how the website makes money and you will avoid scams.
  4. Do not block your credit card without reaching before all the phases that unsubscribes you. If not, you will be the one who do not respect the contract.

 

 

A solution to your problem

You are a victim of abusive withdrawals?  You would like to be helped in the unsubscription process? You want to cancel your paying membership and stop all the withdrawals? Discover the Sos Internet service or contact us.

 

4 Comments

  • Pete Denniston
    on 8 July 2017 Reply

    Unsubscribe me immediately

  • Robert S Hoffman
    on 6 June 2015 Reply

    I don’t have a web page. Last month I asked to be removed from your site and I just got my statement and you charged me again. I am on a fixed income and demand you take off your list. My e-mail again is roadrnrbob843@gmail.com. I would appreciate a return conformation. Thank You

  • amit
    on 7 March 2015 Reply

    I want to unsubscribe FM my flirt account

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