Consumer Alert: Watch Out for Credit Card Cramming
"Cramming" is the process of billing customers for unauthorized
This problem has been widely reported with regard to charges
included on local telephone bills
from third-party vendors, but reports are now occurring
that this is happening with credit cards such as Visa and
There are at least two scenarios reported with regard to
credit card cramming:
The credit card was charged, even though the consumer
never entered into a transaction with the specific merchant.
The credit card was charged after a consumer attempted
to terminate subscription to a service including a
"free trial with negative option", which specifies
that the consumer will be charged following the trial
period if the service is not canceled.
Although this article refers to "credit card" cramming, the
account to which these charges are made could just as easiliy
be a debit card, or possibly even a checking account.
Random Credit Card/Check Card Fraud with Small Charges
This site is actively soliciting information from consumers
encountering problems with credit card cramming.
It provides detailed information on merchants that have
been identified and describes how merchants are getting
credit card numbers of people who have never used the
Pay Site Contact Information
Part of the "Jane's Guide to Sex" site, this area identifies
sex-oriented web sites that may appear on your credit
This is also from Jane's Guide, and it provides a variety
of absolutely wonderful pages explaining how some (but not
all) of the porn sites operate.
If you have signed up for a porn site and want to cancel,
or if there's any possibility that you would ever sign up for one
of these services, be sure you fully explore this area.
Netfill Terms & Conditions
If you read this and you're still considering a membership,
your problems probably go beyond credit card fraud.
Xpics Adult Sites Registration
This page tells you how to register, and the link you
must use to cancel the service.
As of 12/20/1998, this link wasn't working, so it
would appear that once you sign up for this service,
it's impossible to cancel.
Xpics Member Support
This page gives you some alternative ways to cancel your
Xpics (or presumably other PCS-billed services) membership,
including a phone call to 800-695-3494.
If you call that number outside of office hours (7 a.m.- 6 p.m.
PT Monday-Friday), you'll be told that you can use the
automated cancellation service by pressing 2.
But do this, and you'll hear "You have selected an invalid option."
These people seem to have all their bases covered!
XBC "Bank Support Hotline" Page
This is intended to be used by banks to help resolve
disputed credit card charges from XBC.
Note the statement There is a 3 month minimum term for
Then examinate the question about the "Free" trial month on the
XBC FAQ, and you'll
realize that the "free" month requires you to pay for a