Posts Tagged ‘scam’

Pay Facebook to cheat

Posted: September 19, 2019 in Ranting
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Internet scams are nothing new. And one in particular has been doing the rounds for some time now, citing all sorts of names and television programs, while Facebook and Twitter take payment for hosting ads for the scammers. But now the ABC is reporting on this and maybe something may change. Maybe. (more…)

Warning – ‘3’ are trading under false pretenses!

Posted: April 9, 2010 in Uncategorized
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Following the latest ludicrous display from Telstra, I headed off to the competition that I have used previously, hoping to be able to obtain a unit with better receptors such as the Telstra unit supposedly had. However the store manager burst out laughing when I showed him the delinquent Telstra unit that supposedly had better receptors in it.

“They’re all made by the same company,” he laughed. “It has nothing to do with receptors in the unit but is all about strength of the signal from the network you’re on. Telstra have had you on, mate.”

Just as I thought. Telstra staff pulled a fast one on me to sell me a more expensive unit that did no more than their cheaper one. Yet another instance of Telstra being scam artists!

At this point, I expected the manager of that shop to be trying to sell me another one of his products. He didn’t. Instead, he sympathised with my problems and admitted that he has difficulty in getting a signal at his home as well. Like me, he lives just next to the CBD of Australia’s capital, Canberra. Also like me, with networks other than Telstra, it has proved normal to not be able to get a 3G broadband wireless signal inside a building. The best he could suggest was investing in a lengthy USB extension and drape that outside in hope of getting a better signal. For God’s sake – are we that backward in Australia??

I wonder how long the modem would last in the weather outside my window? As for any warranty after that treatment? Forget about it.

As I was stalking through the shopping centre in high dungeon, I stopped at yet another of Telstra’s competitors and was checking their product out. It seemed promising. This was ‘3’.

First things first – what is the reception like in my area? The assistant checked on their computer system, down to my actual street address. She assured me that I had coverage at that address. So I spent another $94 (noting that I am still $160 out of pocket from Telstra’s piece of garbage – as a pensioner, that bloody hurts) on one of their modems plus initial data purchase. And headed home.

First things first – activate the unit. Check. Next, call and validate the prepaid voucher – Check. I am told that it will take five minutes or so to replicate through their network. No problems. I find something else to do for half-an-hour.

Time to test the new wonder-gadget. Except I kept getting an error message that I was not registered on their networks. I call tech support. First they check my location and confirm that yes, I should have coverage there. Eventually they had me take the laptop out in the car and drive around for a while, seeing if I could get a signal in the surrounding suburbs. After doing that, feeling like an absolute idiot, not to mention having a householder challenge me, wanting to know what I was doing and telling me that he had called the police because I was ‘acting suspicously’ while parked outside their house, I headed home.

Another call to 3’s tech support, reporting the distinct lack of success. More messing around – and then the bombshell.

They now admit that there is a network problem in my area. And they have known about this since March 20! Nor do they have any idea when it will be rectified. Yet they are happily still selling product to people, assuring them that there is coverage in this area when in fact the network is non-existent. When protested this, I was initially assured that the coverage did in fact extend to my area but the network actually transmitting is another matter. Talk about playing with semantics!

What a load of frog shit. That is nothing sort of trading under false pretenses.

I have successfully argued for a refund and have been given authorisation numbers to provide to the store tomorrow. What’s the betting that the store quibbles over it? Be sure that you shall be hearing about it if they do.

In the meantime, I am still stuck with my existing service from GRLmobile that only works while sitting outside in the company of the mosquitoes, the increasing cold and the dubious company of the passing junkies on their way to visit their friendly local dealer.

Wireless telecommunications in Australia is an absolute farce. The biggest provider with the strongest network, Telstra, is doing nothing short of price gouging while failing to provide anything like technical support. Any why not? Just like the old days, they still have more or less a monopoly on things. But unlike the bad old days, the industry is now deregulated and there is SFA that can be done. Even the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman has proven to be more or less powerless.

The moral of this particular part of the story folks, is do not purchase any wireless product from ‘3’ including any mobile technology, unless they have checked the status of the network in your location. Do not, repeat, do not accept their assurances about ‘coverage’. And the theme that has been running through the posts on this subject remains the same: Do Not Trust Telstra! Unless you are one of the shareholders. You lot can rejoice in all the profits being made at the expense of the rest of we poor slobs.

I was right – Telstra ARE scam artists!

Posted: April 9, 2010 in Uncategorized
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I have learned, much to my cost, that the wireless telecommunications industry in Australia is an absolute farce and a rort.

Following my protracted negotiations with Telstra, it has been agreed that I am to be refunded for the unit that will not work with my computer and that Telstra are not prepared to provide proper technical support for. All I have to do is return the unit, requesting it be forwarded to the tech support people for testing.

I returned to the point of purchase. But the store manager refused to take the unit back for tech review unless:

  • I provided a credit card number; or
  • I paid cash bond.

Like hell I was giving them either of those things. It was Telstra staff who requested me to return the unit for technical support. My refund is dependent on this. But I am expected to hand over cash money that they will hold for an unspecified period of time and have been anything but up front on what the conditions are for it being returned.

What a brilliant scam this lot are running:

  • keep giving customers incorrect information via technical support that forces the customer to keep calling back at twenty-five cents a time;
  • hide the existence of the Complaints Resolution Centre
  • tie refunds to return of the equipment BUT
  • only if you provide a bond up front or give them a credit card to bill you for the process of providing the tech review that the refund is reliant on.

If you or I tried such a thing, we’d be done for fraud, trading under false pretenses and who knows what else. But, as ever, the big corporations continue to be allowed to do what they wish, when they wish, to whomsoever the hell they want to do it to. Just look at how the ACCC have consistently ruled in favour of the oil companies and their staggering degrees of uncompetitive behaviour.

But the story is not yet over – see my next post that is about to come.

Are Telstra just scam artists?

Posted: April 3, 2010 in Uncategorized
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And the saga continues.

You see, I had managed to get this mobile connection working on a small netbook but that is not my laptop that I use for working purposes and general internet connection. But with no working connection on that main laptop for the foreseeable future, I went to use the netbook again.

The connection is now running at a download rate of zero on this unit that it worked fine on before. But I decide I shall be smart this time and call 125 111 which last night I was informed was the direct line to technical support. Only one problem with that – once again I had been told the wrong thing. This number has absolutely nothing to do with prepaid services. So I had to hang up and call 125 8880 for the umpteenth time and yet another twenty-five cent hit.

After being on hold for a while, I was put through to a ‘consultant’. She asked me for my service number but quite inexplicably put me on hold once more only part-way through my recitation of the necessary digits. Then the call was disconnected.

I called yet again – yet another twenty-five cents. After more delays I finally spoke to a ‘consultant’ who now claimed that I had used up all my credit – more than a Gig! From a unit that isn’t working properly! I was told to check my balance via the Telstra Turbo connection manager. Except that doesn’t tell you anything. I was then told I should have registered online to check such details. First I have been told about that. I was further informed that I would have to validate this new credit voucher via the telephone.

So I put petrol in the car, drive into town, incur a $2 parking fee for the time it took me to get into a shop, purchase a credit and return to the car to go home.

While waiting for yet another interminable time on hold, I read the voucher which was quite adamant that I could do this online. So I tried, while my phone was jammed between cheek and shoulder. It appeared to accept the voucher number but now a message appeared saying that it would be up to 48 hours before this was put through! In the meantime, I am still on hold, listening to an incredibly annoying tune that has me wanting to just hurl the phone across the room.

At last – a person answers the phone. She updates the account. I query my balance. She keeps telling me it is $30. I have a considerably difficulty in getting her to understand that I want to know the balance in download terms ie the download limits. She is unable to tell me anything meaningful. So I ask where I am supposed to be registering online for such information as told earlier today. She is unable to tell me and has to put me through to a ‘specialist’. Someone else takes the call. I ask him where I am supposed to be registering so I can find out what is going on with my account, and he just hangs up in my ear. Was I rude? Abusive? Nope.

I start experimenting with Telstra’s website. I manage to work out how to register. I explore my account. The account balance tells me NOTHING about available data download. The history is meaningless as it shows extensive use when the unit was not working!

I have purchased a set amount of data download. It is not unreasonable to want to know how much download I have left. Instead, it appears that I am supposed to just whip out the calculator and convert $ into Mb by some arcane formula that I first have to work out for myself. But wait – that would also depend on how much my original purchase was for – larger purchase amounts, the price per Mb becomes cheaper. So now my formula for working out what my balance actually is depends on a range of factors in an algebraic formula – solve for X – and just hope that you got it right. What is this – I have I suddenly slipped into a time warp back to 1980 and am studying Higher School Certificate Pure Mathematics once more?

This is an amazing scam by Telstra. Consistently tell people the wrong information so that they have to keep calling back at another twenty-five cents a time – and tell them yet more incorrect information. Set up a system that forces you to call them to sort out updating. Then only give useless information after they have registered, so that you will have to call them back yet again to find out what it actually means. And then leave the poor sods who are silly enough to use their service, now having to go through complex mathematical calculations to work out what their available download limits may be.

At present, I now have to have two computers on my desk: my laptop with everything on it that I need to do the work I am supposed to be doing but which cannot connect to the Internet for reasons still unknown, and a netbook that will connect to the Internet – sort of- but does not have the software I need on it, and as those units come without a CD/DVD drive, I cannot install the software that I require. So I am forced to download information onto a flash drive and keep going back and forth between the two units. And in the meantime, Telstra are still yet to give me a single, sensible, useful response to anything.

You want to know the real irony of all of this? The doctor wants me to avoid stress!

And there is one more aspect to this that I have so far refrained from ranting about. Telstra now have their call centres somewhere overseas. By the accent, I am guessing Indonesia somewhere. But the operatives refuse to answer my question as to where they are. I do not hold it against anyone for being from another country and only speaking my language with a strong accent. I am quite sure they are speaking English far better than I would speak their native tongue. But that accent makes it quite difficult for me to understand what they are saying. And their prepared script is so insincere it isn’t funny. If I hear that accented ‘I am sorry about that sirrrr’ one more time, I shall be looking for someone that I can ram sharp pointed objects into. But where their performance really goes down hill is when they try to spell things. There is an accepted, international phonetic alphabet for English – alpha, beta, charlie, delta, echo, foxtrot etc. But these clowns use silly words that could mean anything. For example, telling me in heavily accented English to type B for Bob sounds equally like telling me to type D for Dog.

This is beyond ridiculous.