BBB suggests caution when dealing with representatives of Progressive Business Publications of Malvern, Pa. The company has an “F” grade with the BBB, the lowest grade possible.
Progressive billed complainants as much as $700, although some bills were under $100. Some businesses said Progressive had offered the publications for free, only to charge them later without their approval. Others said they had no contact with Progressive before receiving invoices from the company. Still others said they learned of the newsletters only after they were contacted by International Credit Recovery, a New York firm hired to collect past-due debts for Progressive. That company also has an “F” grade with the BBB.
Most complainants said they felt pressured to pay for publications they did not want.
The BBB offers the following advice to consumers and businesses receiving phone solicitations:
- Find out who is calling. If you have any question about who is phoning you, hang up and call back after researching the company’s number.
- Be wary of giving any personal or business information to strangers. Such information may be used later as evidence that you agreed to a purchase.
- Be cautious about accepting free or trial offers. Some businesses may distribute their product at no cost for a short time, but then charge you unless you follow very specific cancellation instructions.
- If you feel you have been charged for a product you have not ordered, call the company immediately to make your case. If that does not work, contact the BBB, the attorney general in your state and/or the Federal Trade Commission.