Credit-Monitoring Firm Agrees to $22 Million in Refunds

CHICAGO (Chicago Tribune/TNS) -

At least 210,000 consumers across the country may be eligible for refunds from a Dallas-based company that promised free credit monitoring but billed them almost $30 a month for the service.

One Technologies and its affiliates, which also did business under the names ScoreSense and MyCreditHealth, have agreed to refund consumers $22 million, under an agreement announced Wednesday by the Federal Trade Commission and Illinois and Ohio.

The lawsuit, filed by the federal government and the two states, claims the companies did not properly disclose that consumers who obtained their credit score through an online portal would be enrolled in a credit-monitoring program that automatically billed their credit cards $29.95 a month until consumers canceled the service.

The monitoring programs, advertised through at least 50 websites, included ads that promised consumers they could view their latest credit score “from all three bureaus in 60 seconds for $0.” During the registration process, consumers had to provide credit-card information.

People filed complaints about the companies with banks, credit-card companies, law-enforcement agencies and the Better Business Bureau. Some customers said they were denied refunds when they contacted the companies, according to authorities.