Q: How can I avoid credit card fraud?

There are several ways you can keep your credit card from being the target of online fraud. Here are the basic rules:

    1. Never send your credit card information to anybody using e-mail. E-mail is transmitted through public data channels and can be viewed by anybody who happens to have access to the servers through which the e-mail message travels on the way to its ultimate destination.

    2. Never enter your credit card information on a web page that doesn’t have a locked padlock icon on the border of the browser. The locked padlock means that the page is secure and that your credit card data will be encrypted when its sent across the web, so that nobody other than the recipient will be able to retrieve it.

    3. Never give your credit card as a form of identification. Some sites claim that they’ll give you access if you can prove that you’re an adult by giving them a credit card number, but promising not to run a charge. This is a scam. The only reason that anyone would ever ask for your credit card is so that they can extract money from you.

Q: How can I keep from being ripped off?

The best way to do this is to read the “terms and conditions.” These are usually available during the process of joining a membership to the site. The T&Cs describe exactly what you’re buying and what to expect. They often explain how to cancel and under what circumstances you can expect to get a refund. When Sir Rodney buys a membership to a porn site, he makes a copy of the T&Cs, just in case he runs into trouble with the provider down the road. As Sir Rodney’s sainted grandfather, Lord Rodney, once said: “Know what you’re buyin’, kid, before you fork across the dough.”

Q: What if I can’t cancel?

This is a common question because no one trusts, or expects to get a deal from, an online pornographer. The pornographer appears to be anonymous, taking advantage of the web’s stealth quality. Their charges usually appear as a generic acronym like “CC Bill”, which adds to the inevitable aura of suspicion. While there is merit in these concerns (largely due to a few, but well-publicized cretins that tarnished an otherwise legitimate industry), thankfully, in this case, your friendly neighborhood credit card company is looking out for you. Online merchants who are hit with frequent charge backs are fined and then terminated by the credit card companies; as a result, these merchants are anxious to resolve disputes with consumers quickly, before the credit card company gets involved. This practice has subsequently purged the bad apples from the porn barrel, and Sir Rodney is living proof: he has experienced no problems with cancellations in the process of reviewing hundreds of sites. Please let Sir Rodney know if your experience has been different by writing to him at this address: SirRodney@SirRodney.com.

Q: What do I do if a site doesn’t deliver what it promised on the tour?

This is a legitimate reason for cancellation. If it is done quickly, your credit card company will back you up, too. The first step is always to send an email to the site itself. You also got an 800 customer service number in an email confirming your subscription.
These merchants don’t want a problem with Visa, and will respond to you quickly. If this is not the case, call your credit card company. There will be very bad consequences for the merchant that bilked you. No one pulls stuff like this and stays in business for long. The credit card companies won’t let them.

Q: How does my credit card company handle disputes over charges?

If you can’t get satisfaction from either the online pornographer or the billing company, then you can always do a “charge back.” In order to discourage fraud, credit card companies allow consumers to dispute charges and, in most cases, will allow a refund of the disputed amount. Porn webmasters and billing companies hate charge backs because they cost the web site extra money (as much as $100) and, if there are enough of them, can result in the site or billing company’s termination by the credit card company. Porn webmasters hate charge backs so much that often simply the threat of a charge back is enough to get them to refund money. Note, however, that if you successfully execute a charge back, your credit card could get on a black list and not be accepted at porn web sites in the future.

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