Is Grants 360 a scam?

by El Plumber (admin) on October 12, 2009

grantslogo Is Grants 360 a scam?

Can you get millions of dollars for free from the US Federal Government and never have to pay it back?  It’s what Grants360.com wants you to believe and as you have hopefully guessed, it’s not all that true.  Is it a scam? Does the US Government give out thousands of dollars to people for working at home and filling out one form?  Are there sites you should pay to teach you if there is?  Judging by the number of complaints against them and what we found in their Terms and Conditions, in our opinion if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it’s a duck.

Lets take a walk through this one and see if it falls down shall we?

First off, take a little walk around the Internet.  You’ll find tons of complaints listed on various complaint and scam web sites about how Grants360.com did not honor the claimed 24 hour trial period and charged them immediately despite calling and even receiving a “confirmation” number from them.  Then many also report continued charges for other odd amount on their card from this and various related companies.

So why not go check the authority on how well businesses operate, the Better Business Bureau?  A quick check on Grants 360 yields nothing of course, and a quick check of the Terms page on Grants360.com yields the reason why.  The parent company to Grants360 is called “positive thinking management ltd” (their lower case letters oddly enough, not mine) and is located in the UK!

Wait a sec?  A company helping people find free grants with the US Federal Government that is based in the UK, more or less out of the reach of all but criminal US jurisdiction? And what the heck is a UK company going to tell you about applying for US grants?  And why do they want my credit card number AND 3 digit magic number for a shipping fee?

Note, and this is a very important fact, there is an actual site run by the US Government that has details on how to find and apply for pretty much every grant out there and it’s 100% free for everyone.  No need to give them your credit card at all. Just go to Grants.gov.  Simple, easy, free.

But back to Grants 360.  So you go to the sign up page enter your information and are immediately asked for your credit card.  In tiny font on that page is the following message:

Submitting this form instantly activates your free trial and you will be charged a $1.95 processing fee. You will receive access to our grant package for a full twenty-four hours to evaluate the product. If you’re happy, do nothing and you will be charged $57.61 every thirty days for uninterrupted access to the latest content. There are no obligations; you can cancel anytime via our customer support line or online ticketing system.

Which in itself might come slightly close to satisfying the FTC requirement for clear and conspicuous disclosure, IF that were the only charge they were going to whack you with, AND if they did actually wait 24 hours (which many people have claimed on various sites and message boards is untrue, that you are charged the full amount immediately, and they have no return policy).  Check out the real charges that are hidden in their Terms on another page:

Clicking the buy button will activate your trial membership with Grants 360 and provide instructions to the supplied email address! To activate your trial membership to Grants 360 your card will be charged $1.95 and then you can immediately take advantage of the exciting savings Grants 360 has to offer! After your 1 day trial period it’s just $57.61 for each 30 days for Grants 360. Remember, you can chat with a live operator by calling 1.866.955.1669 within the 1 day period to cancel or emailing us at support@grants360.com and providing detailed information to enable us to process your request, and you will not be charged. As an exclusive bonus we are offering our customers 2 days of unlimited access to our work from home guide for a charge of $1.95. Cancel anytime during the trial period to avoid any further charges. Otherwise, a one-time fee of $38.21 will be charged to your credit card. Marking the checkbox and submitting the form constitutes an agrement(sic) to these terms on your part.

Note that one, there is no checkbox for agreeing to the terms (as required by the FTC at the VERY LEAST) and two that even if you cancel the first thing they charged you monthly for, they are still going to nail you for that second charge without you ever knowing before hand.  Oh, did I mention the site has no mention of any refund policy at all, one way or another?

But best of all, I love this little tidbit here:

If you are not 100% satisfied with the information available to customers in our Grant information Kit, simply contact our customer service department, and we will work to resolve the issue… no hassle!

Wait a sec, no refunds, but if I don’t like the information available you’ll “work to resolve the issue”?  What does that mean?  I’m not satisfied, you want to resolve the issue right?  Wait, why are you hassling me about my desire for a refund since I canceled within 24 hours?

Anyway, steer away from this one folks if you have not been sucked in already.  Just go to grants.gov instead.

How To Cancel Grants 360 Monthly Charges?

Well, they do provide a phone number you can call.  The number to cancel is 1.866.955.1669.   HOWEVER, a number of people have suggested that calling their number is not the right thing to do.

If you call to cancel, they now have a record of you contacting them and if you later try to dispute the charge with your credit card company, they can show the record of your call to your credit card company as proof of the transaction.  Only go this route if you can’t afford to cancel the card in question or if it is a debit card which is much harder to dispute.

Here is what we recommend:

  1. Don’t feel bad! Seems like hundreds if not thousands of people have been taken in by these sort of “negative option” offers that trick you by not clearly disclosing you are signing up for monthly charges. You were tricked, it happens to the best of us.
  2. Call/write your credit card company, dispute the charges and report the card stolen. Since this site does not meet the FTC requirements for clear disclosure for the charges you received, consider your card stolen This will make sure they can’t charge you any more and that they can’t sell your credit card number to anyone else. If they tricked you once already, what makes you think they won’t try to squeeze every penny out of you they can?
  3. Start ID theft monitoring right away! Click here to sign up for Experian Protect My Id monitoring. You just gave some shady website your name, address, phone number, credit card and secret 3 digit card number.  You can get Experian ID Protection for free for 30 days, then it’s $9.95 a month. I’d suggest signing up for AT LEAST the free month to check your credit report for free and make sure no one tries to change your address or open a new card using the current cards details you gave away.

I Didn’t Get Taken, But What Can I Do To Help?

Wh can you do to stop these guys from taking in more people? Warn everyone about it!

  1. Click Here to Share this on Facebook! Hit “Post to Profile” to warn your friends.
  2. Use the “Share This” link below to Digg or Stumble or Reddit or Email or whatever service you use to share this so that other people might see it before they get scammed too!
  3. Click Here to ReTweet this article to warn all your faithful followers.

But I Wanted To Make Money Online, Not Get Scammed!  Is There Anything Real Out There?

Yes, there are many people who earn a living working at home sitting in front of their computer.  And you can actually be one of them!  Check out our article on The Best Way To Learn To Make Money Online.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Bettye Reed October 14, 2009 at 1:48 pm

I have had simuliar billing problems. I did get a new card. Did I understand that I would be a monthly charge every month? For how long? I’m going to the bank and file charges. I have prinited out my bank statement and I used a Visa debit card and Visa will be very firm.

Taesha October 29, 2009 at 2:50 pm

I wish I did more research before I let grants 360 scam me, I canceled and filled out a refund form but they did not give me back my full refund, only a partial refund when they said they would give full. what a joke, GRANTS 360 IS COMPLETELY 100% SCAM

Levi November 12, 2009 at 6:58 pm

Thanks a lot for this. I was about to sign up, but did a quick Google search on Grants 360 and found your site. It looks like you saved me a bunch of money. Again, thanks for that. This website is doing very good work for the world indeed.

Mark January 5, 2010 at 9:09 am

Thank you very much. I’m always suspicious BUT this one GRANTS360/US GRANTS….They almost had me! THANK YOU cannot be said enough!

Neptale Nat Cuevas March 8, 2010 at 6:07 am

I would like to kill everyone associated with this company or at lest get a class
action law site against them. Anyone interseted

Kathy Peebles April 18, 2010 at 2:04 pm

I DID NOT sign up for anything, never gave any numbers, BUT still got charged for 2 months . Waiting for next bank statement to see is calling and canceling worked.

Alice April 30, 2010 at 10:06 am

I would like to fine a good grant , that won’t take me. to paid off my bills.
we really need help, we been taken a lot . on are credits cards , they been charging 50%.
how you like that. and I’m paying on time. plus we were taken on a garage, we had a company
come in to build are garage , and they walk off are hard saving money, and supplys.
and took them to court, and never got a raid send back. So we do not, trust any one.
they put us in a bad mass. So i need a very good grant to get us out this mass.
are money only go so far. and i want to trust them. I have more , but this is only thing
happen with money. rest health wise. alice

Richard Stewart August 13, 2010 at 10:27 am

I signed up for this-so called grant help -spent $30.00,never heard anything –it is definitly a scam.When I called them to check on my account status,they where very rude and wanted more money.

Lori October 14, 2010 at 11:38 am

This website somehow has be debiting my account (embarrassingly) for 16 months! OMG! That’s almost $1,000.00.
What a freaking joke. I’ve been had. DO NOT approach this website, EVER!!!!!

Phil November 1, 2010 at 11:05 pm

People just need to use their common sense and remember that if it’s too good to be true, then it is.

Amelia March 11, 2011 at 4:48 am

I BEEN TRYING TO GET STARTED WITH WORK ONLINE BUT IT LOOK’S LIKE U HAVE TO PAY MONEY TO MAKE MONEY. I HAVE ALOT OF POPS UP WEBSITE ABOUT WORK FROM HOME TAKE SURVEY FOR FREE AND GET PAID AND RECEIVE FREE GIFTS BUT AT THE END OF ALL THAT I STILL HAVE TO SPEND MONEY TO GET WHAT YOU NEED AND INFO………………………

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