Posted by: 4whateveritsworth | September 7, 2011

How Not to Treat a Customer or Risk Losing that Customer


My anti-virus and anti-spyware software suddenly alerted me that my computer was at risk and it was time to renew my subscription. I wasn’t actually due for my yearly renewal for about 10 days.  However, since it appeared that I wasn’t protected, I opted to renew early, but with no success. Somehow I was stuck in a loop, unable to tell if I was currently still protected, and unable to make sense of the renewal process.

Ultimately it seemed more sensible to call the company to resolve the problem.  What a challenge.  The 2 customer service reps, with whom I spoke,  couldn’t determine if my PC was still being protected.  That hardly made me feel safe.

The first rep suggested I renew. It seemed like a simple fix, given that my subscription was about to expire anyhow.

I began the process of renewal online, received the email with the password and followed the directions, with the assistance of the customer service representative.  It all sounded easy, but it wasn’t. Their system wouldn’t accept the password, so they re-sent an email. Again the password was rejected. After a few tries,  I was warned that my account was about to be locked.

The customer service representative wasn’t able to guide me.  Actually I hadn’t received any guidance since the phone call began.  She asked me my security question, which I answered, and told me my answer was incorrect, despite the fact that I had already given the same answer online moments earlier, with no problem.

Apparently my package didn’t include technical support, so the customer service representative wanted to charge me for this service. What? Pay extra for technical services to determine:

– if my computer is currently being protected or if it is at risk, when I have been paying for anti-virus and anti-spyware for the past year

– why the password the company keeps emailing me  isn’t being accepted in their online system

– why I can’t renew the service online (hey, I want to give you my business and pay for it!)

I was willing to just renew the subscription, hoping to resolve the problems. I had little faith that my dilemma would be resolved, so I finally requested a supervisor.

Similarly the supervisor was unable to make any headway. For 4 cents (yes, cents!)  extra a month, she advised me that I could receive technical assistance. Was this for real?  Otherwise, I could access help online in a chat, but she wasn’t certain how it worked and whether my questions could be answered.  She said I must have uninstalled the software, which I hadn’t. Come on now, uninstalling is no simple task, and I would certainly be aware of having done so. (Hmmmm……I read an article about “sleep texting” this past week; could I be “sleep uninstalling?” LOL)

After a while it seemed like they were grasping at straws, when all I really wanted to do was renew their product and pay for it, which up until now had worked fine all year. (Please, please, I am begging you to take my money!!!)

Ultimately I gave up. My husband spoke with friends who recommended using a different service for protection.  It wasn’t the smoothest transition, as is often the case when you download new software, but I’m up and running, with new anti-virus and anti-spyware protection. My other subscription was cancelled and the software was uninstalled, for real this time.

Until my next post, 4 whatever it’s worth…..

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