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"Been Verified" is a potentially dangerous scam!

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by glock39, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. glock39


    May 26, 2005
    Tyler, TX
    I made the mistake of listening to a TV ad for a company called "Been Verified". They are supposed to do consumer level background checks to help people stay away from stalkers, con men and other assorted nasties that prey on the unwary.

    Do NOT make the mistake of falling for their advertisements! They pretend to have a free trail offer of one background check. This is a Bait & Switch scam. First, they ask for your name and email (fair enough). Then they won't give you any information unless you give them a credit card and sign up for a "free" trail. That's not my definition of "free". Since they started out by lying to me, I had no intention of trusting them with a credit card, nor would I have any reason to believe they would actually cancel the service when requested. I considered them to be a bunch of con men, and closed out their web page at that point.

    Imagine my surprise when, the next day, I received what appeared to be a third party email from someone I never heard of who knew my name, my email address and the name of the person I was checking out. Opening the email revealed what appeared to be another offer from Been Verified, who were now only going to charge me $10 for my "free" trail. That's assuming the email was actually from Been Verified, of course. The return address displayed was not from that company. Was it from a persistent salesman at Been Verified? Was it a phishing attempt by a third party to get my credit card number? I still don't know (phony email scams are common after making a purchase on ebay, etc). I do know that for any so-called security company to expect that you would blindly follow a link you got in an email from somebody that doesn't even have the right return address is, at best, the height of unprofessional behavior. I emailed them with this concern, but their response was too preoccupied with trying to get money for them to bother answering my question. I have repeatedly asked them to remove me from their contact list, with no response from them on my request.

    Sending unsolicited emails the next day plainly naming the person you're investigating is also potentially dangerous (what if the person you're checking out has access to your computer and/or email account?). I mean, I was just checking on an old case of identity theft. What if you were checking to see if someone you know had a history of criminal violence, and they happened to get to your email the next day before you did? Yeah, the threat of imminent discovery might scare them away. It might also set them off into a violent rage. Less dramatically, an employee who observed that his past history of embezzlement is about to be discovered might decide to clean out the company safe and run. That's why professional security companies don't put confidential information in the subject line of emails. Obviously, Been Verified is not a professional company.

    Are they in any way legitimate? I don't know. I do know that they have consistently acted like a bunch of con artists.
  2. glock39


    May 26, 2005
    Tyler, TX never did respond to my request to be removed from their mailing list. However, I am usually very cautious about giving out my email, and I've already received more phony email scams in the week since I gave my email to BeenVerified than I have in the proceeding 2 years. And no, I haven't given that address out to anyone else for months.

    Sorry if this seems like a rant :steamed: It just bugs me that a company that promises to protect women from stalkers and children from child molesters is not just a scam, but is so sloppy that they could easily endanger someone who makes the mistake of coming to them for help.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2011