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Online purchase issues have doubled in the KC area, BBB says

Posted at 1:37 PM, Dec 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-05 16:05:32-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – In the past three to four months, online purchase issues have doubled in the Kansas City area, according to the Better Business Bureau.

The organization had some tips for online shoppers including look for an “s” at the end of an “http” site, or a security lock in the browser bar, and make sure the contact information on the website’s “Contact Us” page is accurate.

Those are all things Melanie Cogswell normally looks for, but when she saw a "free trial" of Garcinia Fuel with a $4.95 shipping charge in her Facebook ads, she went for it.

She didn't like the product and canceled her order, and that's when she found out it would cost her about $80. 

"Actually, you have 14 days to return it or you get charged," said Cogswell.

We went to the company's website and had a difficult time finding that information, but a supervisor there told 41 Action News it was.

We tried from two different email addresses to reach a company official, but the emails were kicked back both times.

Cogswell got her money back from the bank and filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. 

A manager from Garcinia Fuel later called and told 41 Action News information about the reoccurring payment is listed in terms and conditions on advertisements, not on web pages. She described them as pop-up-like ads.

"There needs to be a very clear indication when you order something like that what they are locking you into," said Cogswell.

The manager did not admit the company was at fault but offered a full refund to the customer. This is $79.95 plus a $4.95 shipping cost.

BBB manager Aaron Reese said to be careful when looking at ads on social media. They are getting one or two calls a week about online purchase issues.

"A lot of it has to do with Facebook and Instagram ads. For some reason people are clicking on them and they're going to untrustworthy sites," said Reese.

He showed us one that has been shut down, Ecom Apparel.

Reese said there are new scams popping up every day. Many of them are shut down quickly.