Have my parents been sucked into a scam?
April 16, 2007 7:35 PM   Subscribe

Has anyone hearld of or had dealings with "Click Income"? My parents (who are on a fixed income) have dolled out $4,000.

They saw an ad in the newspaper of a free presentation about fantastic oppourtunity tied in with e-bay. They have never brought or sold on e-bay, but evidently the sales presention was so well done that they signed up. They called me tonight and told me all about it. I'm worried that the money will be history. They have untill tomorrow to cancel. Is this a con? If it's not a con, is this the best way to start on e-bay?
posted by ok to Work & Money (23 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Well, you don't have to pay $4k to start. Are you talking about These guys? They're Alexa page rank is 776k, which means hardly anyone visits their website. You'd think an e-commerce site would get more traffic.
posted by delmoi at 7:47 PM on April 16, 2007

posted by grouse at 7:48 PM on April 16, 2007

Of course it's a con. They set up people with a crappy web page and give them the opportunity to sell crappy merchandise that no one will buy. They should cancel, but there's no guarantee that they'll get their money back. Make sure they cancel the check, or reverse the charges on the credit card.
posted by mr_roboto at 7:49 PM on April 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

What I would do in their situation would be to buy several of these books, since it's hard to know which ones will have the information you really need.
posted by delmoi at 7:49 PM on April 16, 2007

Google won't tell me anything, and I don't have any experience except life experience, but it smells bad from here. After some random clicking on their sites I couldn't find any real information about what they are, only happy buzzwords. I say trust your gut.
posted by putril at 7:49 PM on April 16, 2007

Just a guess. There money is gone and wasted.

The best way to start on e-bay is to start on e-bay. If that's not enough, they even offer free "consulting" to help people get started and there are dozens of how-to books on Amazon.

If they still want to spend thousands of dollars, they should try actually spending it on e-bay, a little at a time, buying and selling things.
posted by Good Brain at 7:50 PM on April 16, 2007

Run away. They need to cancel. They can always sign up again if it proves to be legit given further research (which is a remote chance).
posted by voidcontext at 7:50 PM on April 16, 2007

Get them to cancel if they actually can. This smells like a big scam.

Did they pay cash, or credit/cheque? If it's the latter, and even if they get their money back, have them watch for ID theft signs.

If they want to get into eBay, help them find some good books on the subject.
posted by CKmtl at 7:53 PM on April 16, 2007

Click Income Scam Review. Nthing cancelling right now.
posted by user92371 at 7:53 PM on April 16, 2007

user92371 writes "Click Income Scam Review. Nthing cancelling right now."

N.B.: That's just another scam site that works by dissing other scams and then getting you to sign up for their scam. There are dozens of those, and the page you linked to is just a form with "ClickIncome" plugged into the variable [scamname] field.
posted by mr_roboto at 7:59 PM on April 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

Have them cancel immediately, and follow the cancelation instructions to the letter. You'll notice that their refund policy is very picky, with a short window of time where you can cancel, and a long period of time before you get your money back. These are all the hallmarks of a scam. Document every last detail, keep copies of everything, and expect to have to fight long and hard to get the money back.
posted by spilon at 8:00 PM on April 16, 2007

If they have to cancel by tomorrow, consider using a Fedex-Kinko's (or like) service that will allow them to have the documents delivered the same day. No other way to get it to the person, unless you are in the same town.
posted by acoutu at 8:15 PM on April 16, 2007

Fedex your cancellation *and* send another copy of the cancel notice registered through USPS. That way the Feds can get involved if need by as "mail fraud". If the documents require a different venue of notice, do that too!
posted by ilsa at 9:13 PM on April 16, 2007

Uhoh, they're in Utah:
This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Utah (except that the body of Utah laws controlling conflict of laws).
That's bad bad news.
posted by orthogonality at 9:54 PM on April 16, 2007

They won't want to believe they've been scammed(it's embarrassing), so maybe show them this thread?
posted by Mr. Gunn at 10:04 PM on April 16, 2007

1. Cancel via FedEx
2. STOP PAYMENT on a personal check
3. Reverse the charges on a credit card


I'm sorry. It's awful how well-meaning, well-intentioned people get scammed by outfits like this; and it's especially hard when it's your parents or someone else you love and care about.
posted by Gerard Sorme at 11:02 PM on April 16, 2007

Yes, your parents need to immediately stop payment on whatever method they used or they're never gonna see that money again. This is a total scam.
posted by Justinian at 12:35 AM on April 17, 2007

Don't cancel with the company as they'll just ignore it. Cancel the actual money transaction via whatever method you used. Stop the check with the bank, call the credit card company, etc.
posted by mr_book at 5:53 AM on April 17, 2007

You can try paying lip service to their cancellation instructions, but it's a scam -- they're not going to willingly give any money back.

Call the credit card company and backcharge immediately, or call the bank and stop payment on the check. Even if the stop payment costs money (usually $30ish) or if stopping the CC payment involves putting the card on "hot card" status, it's worth it.
posted by Kadin2048 at 5:54 AM on April 17, 2007

If for some reason they can't get their money back and they attended something locally (and they're not in Utah, as orthogonality mentioned) it's worth mentioning this to the state attorney general. Some states are more litigious than others, but cases of companies scamming often-vulnerable groups (the elderly, the disabled) can lead to class action lawsuits, especially when there are deceptive refunds in play.
posted by mikeh at 7:46 AM on April 17, 2007

You don't even need to disparage the company to point out the problem with this, just use the law of supply and demand: If many other people are selling the exact same product in the same marketplace and you are paying the same cost as the other sellers, you can't make a profit.

To really succeed on eBay you would want to find the thing that people are looking for that no other seller has.
posted by winston at 8:08 AM on April 17, 2007

everyone here is right. show parents this thread. cancel payment at the source, even if there is a fee (stop check, cancel credit card payment). document everything. scammers suck.
good luck.
posted by BillBishop at 12:57 PM on April 17, 2007

mr_roboto: domo arigato. My google-fu is apparently weak during tax time. Noted, filed, attached to form 8730-A.
posted by user92371 at 1:02 PM on April 17, 2007

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