Consumer Action

June 9, 2010

Checking Better Business Bureau Reports. What to Look For.

A member of a networking site where I sometimes post asked if there were any good internet companies offering mailing lists, e-mail list, etc.  At the time of the question, I had knowledge of two companies:  Data Depot (www.datadepot.biz) and Info Group, Inc. (www.infogroup.com).  As I have mentioned many times, datadepot.biz is not accredited with the BBB and has an F rating.  Info Group, Inc. is accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating.

What does this mean?  According to the BBB website, “If a business has been accredited by BBB, it means BBB has determined that the business meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints.  BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.

BBB accreditation does not mean that the business’ products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business’ product quality or competency in performing services.

Businesses are under no obligation to seek BBB accreditation, and some businesses are not accredited because they have not sought BBB accreditation.

Ratings are determined by a number of factors including how complaints are handled by the company.  The BBB website states, “BBB assigns grades from A to F with pluses and minuses. A+ is the highest grade and F is the lowest. The grade represents BBB’s degree of confidence that the business is operating in a trustworthy manner and will make a good faith effort to resolve any customer concerns filled with BBB.

Here is a partial list of companies offering these services along with their BBB rating and accreditation status. 

  • Info Group, Inc. (www.infogroup.com).  Accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating.  Approximately 37 complaints closed by the BBB over the past 3 years with 10 of those in the past year.
  • LeadsPlease.com (www.leadsplease.com).  Accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating.  This company has not had any consumer complaints in the past 3 years.
  • Constant Contact, Inc. (www.constantcontact.com).  Accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating.  This company has had 19 complaints over the past 3 years with 4 of those occurring in the past 12 months.
  • List Giant (www.listgiant.com).  This is a Gold Coast Partners business.  Gold Coast Partners is not accredited with the BBB and has a D rating.  This company has 1 complaint over the past 3 years that was unanswered by the company.  Also operates under the name Universal Lists.
  • Data Depot (www.datadepot.biz).  Data Depot is not accredited with the BBB and has an F rating.  DataDepot.biz has had 56 complaints closed by the BBB in the past 3 years with 50 of those ocurring in the past year.  Company is also known as In Touch Media, LLC and operates additional websites www.b2bdata.org and www.email-list.com

Each of the respective BBB sites provides additional information about these companies.  It is a good place to start your research before giving any company, especially on the internet, your money.

BBB reports provide a great starting point to determine what type of company you may be dealing with. 

Hope this helps at least one consumer avoid a bad mistake such as the one I made when I stupidly engaged DataDepot.biz to provide mailing lists.

Let me know if you know of any other company that deserves mention, whether good or bad.

Thanks.

Clark

May 31, 2010

New Forum: DataDepot.biz Complaints

After my own bad experience with this F-rated company and meeting several others with similar experiences, I have decided to start a forum for the sole purpose of documenting this company’s bad business behavior.  Consumers have to band together and take action in order to hold internet companies accountable; otherwise, they continue to victimize unknowing consumers.  Check out DataDepotBizComplaints forum.

Please share this with everyone you know – you never know who else might be a dissatisfied customer needing a place to document his/her experience.  You can also learn more information about the steps you can take if you are “taken to the cleaners” by any company. 

Help us make a positive difference on the internet.  Bookmark this new forum, join in the discussion and share.

May 30, 2010

DataDepot.biz Continues to Pile Up Complaints

Now up to 49 complaints at the West Florida BBB just this year, DataDepot.biz continues to show why it retains its F rating.  Here is an example of one of the latest complaints:  http://www.complaints.com/2010/may/30/Data_Depot__-_BEWARE_234777.htm

Because this company continues to get away with ripping off people, a new forum dedicated specifically to documenting complaints against datadepot.biz has been started.  If you or anyone you know has had a bad experience with this company, please share it on this forum.  Also, I encourage you to bookmark the forum and share with your friends – who knows, you may help save them from losing their money.

May 2, 2010

DataDepot.Biz Website Endorsements: Are They Real or Fake?

Filed under: Data Depot — Clark @ 11:22 pm
Tags: , , , ,

We know that there have been numerous complaints filed against DataDepot.biz and that they have an F rating with the West Florida Better Business Bureau but when you view the website for datadepot.biz, they show some pretty impressive endorsements.  In an effort to find someone who has had a good experience with them, we began looking into these endorsements.  Here’s what we’ve found so far:

# 1.  Lynne Jones, President of Escrows Direct – we were able to find a record for Escrows Direct located in Seminole, FL.  According to the Florida Department of State Division of Corporations, this company was incorporated 5/2/2007.  No officer name is shown and the status of the company is listed as inactive.  The last event recorded is “ADMIN DISSOLUTION FOR ANNUAL REPORT” filed on 9/26/2008.  We were not able to find the Lynne Jones shown on the datadepot.biz endorsement.

Is endorsement # 1 real or fake?

# 2.  Adele Krsek of Family Shield USA.  We were able to locate only one company with this name.  It was incorporated in New Hampshire 11/4/2005 and its current status is shown as “Admin Dissolution/Suspension” as of 8/31/2007.  The company’s articles of incorporation show 3 different people signing the form; however, none of them are Adele Krsek.

We also found a Family Shield (USA) where the name is an alternative title for the TV series, “To Serve and Protect.”  We did not find an Adele Krsek associated with this name.

Our name search for “Adele Krsek” turned up two women in the U.S.

Is endorsement # 2 real or fake?

# 3.   Pilar Jiminez, listed as Vice President for Pericia International.  We found Pericia International and it appears to be an on-going business.  We contacted the company and were informed by the President of the company that there is no one at the company by the name of Pilar Jiminez and there never has been.

Is endorsement # 3 real or fake?

# 4.  Brian Williams, VP of Marketing at Crossfire Financial, Inc.  The only business we found during our internet search with a similar name was Crossfire Financial Network located in Florida.  The company we found is a mortgage brokerage company according to their website; however, the e-mail address they have listed on their “contact us” page is invalid so we are unable to verify the endorsement, the person supposedly making the endorsement or the actual existence of the company represented in the endorsement.

Is endorsement # 4 real or fake?

These are just a few examples.  Can anyone provide proof that any of the so-called endorsements shown on this company’s website are real?  Is there a credible voice that can validate any of them?  We’re still looking for any positive endorsement of Datadepot.biz and, so far, are having no luck.

April 22, 2010

DataDepot.Biz E-Mail Lists May Not Be All They Are Advertised to Be

Stop!  Before you purchase that e-mail list from DataDepot.biz, you should know that you may well be buying a list comprised of duplicates and garbage.  You may think you’re paying for a list of some number of e-mail addresses based on what is advertised but, beware, you may have a lot of entries that are merely variations of one e-mail address.  One example provided to this author by one who was duped by DataDepot.biz is:

[name]@seven_eleven.com
[name]@seveneleven.com
[name]@7-eleven.com
[name]@seven-eleven.com
[name]@sevenelevens.com
[names]@seven-eleven.com

(the actual name in the example above has been replaced with “[name]” to protect the person’s privacy).

As you can see, you are not really getting 6 different e-mail contacts although, you may be paying for 6.  Do you suppose datadepot.biz will allow you to see the file before giving them your money?  Don’t bet on it.  But, here is something you can bet on – once you have given them your money and find you are not satisfied with what you receive, they will not do anything about it and, most likely, will just tell you that you agreed to their terms that state all sales are final.

Once you’ve reached this point, you have just joined the ranks of many others who have made the mistake of doing business with this company who, by the way, is the proud owner of an F rating with the West Florida Better Business Bureau.

If you are looking for an e-mail list supplier, I suggest you keep looking and stay away from datadepot.biz.

November 16, 2009

Consumer Action is Now Here for You

Welcome to the Consumer Action Blog.  The purpose of this site is to provide a place for consumers to voice their legitimate, factual complaints about businesses (including government) that just don’t act right.  Please read the terms and conditions before getting involved.  This is a call to action, not just a gripe site!!  Together, we can make a positive difference in our country so, please join me in our push to return sanity and decency to our business world.

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