1and1 Incompetence, Part 10

The saga of 1nd1’s incompetence continues unabated.

I was actually excited yesterday to find that my account had been unlocked, allowing me access for the first time in several weeks to my DNS settings.

I should be more careful about those optimistic tendencies when it comes to 1and1.

Today I received my latest  invoice.  Not only are they charging me for domains that I canceled and I have all of the confirmations proving it, but they added all of the domains I have been complaining about for four months now.

That means there are TWO invoices in my account for the exact same identical fraudulent charges.  Not only have they not fixed the one I have submitted complaints about over twenty times, but they have now created a brand new fraudulent invoice with the same domains!

Just how many times does a customer have to complain and submit iron clad proof of their mistakes to get someone at 1and1 to actually fix a problem?

I cannot answer that question.  I have sent them lists, signed faxes, corrected invoices, complaints and I am posting it here for the world to see, and they still cannot get their act together.

Just how much incompetence can one company exhibit?

If I were anyone in management at 1and1, I would be absolutely embarassed that a situation this cut and dried could go on this long, and generate this much negative publicity.

1and1 is incompetent.

1and1 is dishonest.

1and1 is the worst company I have ever dealt with.

I challenge anyone at 1and1 to answer my claims that they are completely incompetent.

I have to go now and generate ANOTHER correction request for this latest invoice, but when i get that done, I am going to post about even more problems with their cancellation system.  They will deny transfers to another registrar even on domains that you cancel!  Then they still bill you for them!

1and1 Incompetence, Part 4

Continuing proof that 1and1 is incompetent, dishonest, and cares nothing about their customers.

Where were we?  Oh yeah, my account is now locked because I refuse to pay a fraudulent invoice.  1and1 is trying to charge me for domains I had no ability to cancel because they were incapable of transferring the contract for over a month.

David Rubel, the Billing Manager, is pretending all of this is my fault and ignoring my messages, even after I have submitted proof on multiple occasions.

So, on February 16, I issued a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission regarding their dishonest business practices.  I sent the reference number to David Rubel, along with another outline of the entire situation.

Here is his reply:

From: billing@1and1.com
Sent: Tuesday, February 17, 2009 12:21 PM
To: Brian Gothard
Subject: CXXXXXXXXX – 1&1 Internet Inc. Billing Re: ATTN: David Rubel

Dear Brian Gothard, (Cust: XXXXXXXXX)
Thank you for contacting us.

Please provide me with an incorrectly charged domain, as my records now show the contact with the domains are on this account and they were correctly invoiced.

Unfortunately the rest of your email are features we just do not offer at this time, except for the cancellation of domains as at any time you can go to can go to cancel.1and1.com to cancel a domain.

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact us.

David Rubel
Billing Department
1&1 Internet Inc.

Can you believe this?  His records show the domains were correctly invoiced?  Again, I question whether he is that incompetent, or intentionally stonewalling me.  I cannot believe anyone is this stupid.  I have sent him emails every three or four days for several weeks with a complete explanation, and spoken with him on the phone!

So, I once again sent him the list he requested, and the entire history, with full documentation.

I sent it again on February 18.

And again on February 24.  This time I added every 1and1 email address I had been able to acquire.

On February 25, I received instructions from complaints@1and1.com on how to cancel domains.  It did not address any of the real problems, just blamed me once again for not knowing how to cancel domains.

That was the day I submitted my complaint to the Better Business Bureau.  1and1 has an “F” rating, the worst you can get.  They have hundreds of complaints, proving that 1and1 does not care about their customers.

I sent the reference number to everyone at 1and1. No one cared enough to respond.

On February 27, I sent another request that they fix my invoice so I could pay it.  Never received a response.

Not being one to just sit down and shut up, I still refuse to just pay the incorrect invoice.  1and1 created this situation, and I intend to make them fix it.

Next post: RippedOffConsumers.org is born!

1and1 Incompetence, Part 2

Remember from my last post that 1and1 personnel admitted at 12:47 PM on January 8, that the domains still had not been transferred?

Well, I received an invoice on January 8 for all of the domains that had expired during the time 1and1 was unable to provide me access to the domains.  In other words, I had no way of canceling the ones I did not want.  I had the list from Seller of what he said was in the contract, but I had not yet been able to verify anything because 1and1 still had the domains lost in their system somewhere, unable to complete the transfer.

So, the domains showed up in my account January 8, right?  WRONG!  When I received the invoice, I was understandably upset.  I sent the following message:

From: Brian Gothard
Sent: Thursday, January 08, 2009 10:39 PM
To: ‘1&1 Internet Inc.’; ‘support@1and1.com’; ‘transfer@1and1.com’; ‘redemption@1and1.com’
Subject: RE: Your invoice #XXXXXXXXX of 01/08/2009
Importance: High

Two things:

1)  I do not intend to renew some of these domains, so DO NOT automatically charge my account.  I have not authorized any automatic charges with regards to these domains, and do not intend to.  This is your official notice.

I will renew the domains I want to keep on an individual basis, manually.
You ARE NOT authorized to charge me for these domains.

2)  You have sent an invoice, but the domains are not accessible under my Control Panel, so I still have no control over them.  I find it interesting that the invoice is dated yesterday, but the domains are still not under my account.

It has taken over a month to complete the transfer, and I still cannot access the domains.  I am absolutely unimpressed with 1and1.

I will repeat that you are not authorized to automatically charge me for ANYTHING.  I intend to transfer the domains I want away from 1and1 as quickly as possible based on your atrocious customer service, and others I will allow to expire.

Of course, you will have to GIVE ME ACCESS TO THE DOMAINS before I can do ANYTHING!

Not very diplomatic, I agree, but I think it makes a point, and obviously points out that I have no ability to access the domains.

To further prove their incompetence, here is the reply I received:

From: billing@1and1.com [mailto:billing@1and1.com]
Sent: Friday, January 09, 2009 8:30 AM
To: Brian Gothard
Subject: CXXXXXXXXX – 1&1 Internet Inc. Billing RE: Your invoice #XXXXXXXXX of 01/08/2009

Dear Brian Gothard, (Cust:XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

All domains automatically renew per the terms and conditions you agreed to.

If you wish to cancel your domains please visit https://cancel.1and1.com and use your Customer ID and password to login.

At the end of the process you will need to activate your request. In order to do so, you will receive an e-mail message with a special link which you will need to click to complete the process.

If you do not receive the e-mail with the confirmation link e-mail within a few hours of completing the cancellation, please notify us ASAP.

Please note that if you do not receive this e-mail and click on the link within (7) seven days of the request, your cancellation request will not complete and your services will remain active.

Any refund will be based on our refund policy per the terms and conditions of your account and will be processed within 14 days of your cancellation requests effective date.

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact us.

David Rubel
Billing Department
1&1 Internet Inc.

Notice this is from David Rubel, Billing Manager.  Does it appear he even attempted to read the email?  Not to me.  He blames me for not canceling the domains according to their terms and conditions, and gives me directions for using a system that still does not have my domains in it!  Is this incompetence, apathy, or purposeful dishonesty?

On January 10, in an attempt to proactively fix this problem, I sent a message to all of the 1and1 email addresses that I had a complete explanation of the situation and two lists:  one list of the domains I wanted to keep from their invoice, and one list of the domains I did not want.  There were 21 domains on the invoice.  I wanted to keep four and drop the rest.  I also pointed out that I STILL did not have any access to the domains in my account.

I received no reply at all, so on the afternoon of January 12, I sent it all again, with an additional request for information.  I also canceled the PayPal agreement that would allow them to automatically charge me for the invoice.

The next message I received from 1and1 was January 13.  It was a notification that their attempt to debit my PayPal account had failed.  Of course it did.  They were trying to charge me for a fraudulent invoice that they had not yet fixed.

I forwarded that message back to all the 1and1 addresses with another explanation of the situation and request for correction.  I also pointed out that I STILL did not have access to the domains in my account.

Next post, I actually tried to call.  Read on.

1and1 Incompetence, Part 1

This is the first in a series of articles outlining the incompetence, dishonesty, and outright fraud I have been subjected to by 1and1.  1and1 claims to provide web hosting and domain name services.  What they actually provide are headaches and heartaches and very little else.

In November of 2008, I purchased a bulk lot of 270+ domain names from a 1and1 client.  I am going to call him Seller to protect the innocent.  I had never done business with 1and1 before, so I had no idea of the nightmare I was about to get involved in.  If I knew then what I know now, I would have run as far and as fast as I could away from 1and1.  Any benefit I get from that purchase will forever be tainted by their ineptitude.

On December 8, 2008, Seller faxed the appropriate Transfer Request Form, supplied by 1and1, to their Transfers Department.

On December 10, Seller received an email acknowledging the request, along with a promise that the transfer would be completed within 24 hours.  It was not.

Seller contacted them again when there was no transfer or further communication from 1and1, and on December 18, he received this message:

From: <transfer@1and1.com>
To: Seller
Sent: Thursday, December 18, 2008 1:29 PM
Subject: Re: CXXXXXXXXX Contract Move

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

We currently experiencing an issue with the contract moves. Our
administrators are working on resolving this issue as quickly as
possible. We will send you an email with updates shortly.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller contacted them again on Monday, and received this reply:

From: <transfer@1and1.com>
To: Seller
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2008 8:36 AM

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

I apologize for the delay in moving your contract over, but we had an
issue with our ability to perform certain tasks within our system.

We will be performing the move today, but before we do that, I would
have to ask that you back up all of your webspace data and any e-mails.

Once you have done this, please let me know and we will begin the move.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller told them to go ahead and do what he had asked on multiple occasions for them to do.

On December 30, I sent the following message

From: “Brian Gothard”
To: <president@1and1.com>
Cc: <transfer@1and1.com>; <support@1and1.com>; <complaints@1and1.com>; Seller
Sent: Tuesday, December 30, 2008 8:22 PM

Dear Sir or Madame,

As a technology consultant, I regularly recommend web services to my clients.  I am expanding my services to include more web related products and have been researching and evaluating providers for several months.

1and1 has failed miserably.

The inability of your company to complete the transfer referenced in the thread below in a reasonable amount of time has left me with a very bad impression of your service.

I fully understand how much impact software systems problems can have on a normal business.  That is my job: to address and correct issues with technology.  I can commiserate with your situation.  But this process was started on December 9, according to Employee Name Removed.

Even accounting for the holidays that is 12 normal business days.  That seems an unreasonable amount of time to me to perform something that ties directly to your core business process.  This is a simple transfer from one customer number to another.
No matter how extensive or convoluted your processes are, this cannot possibly require that much time to complete.
Keep in mind that Mr. Seller has been having extensive problems managing the domains for several weeks prior to this.  It seems your entire system is insufficient for your business.

My customer number is XXXXXXXX.  Please address this situation with your employees and let me know when I can expect some results.

Brian Gothard
Technology Consultant

The president account bounced, of course.  I didn’t really expect it to land, but I had to try.  More importantly; I never received a response from anyone at 1and1.  Not even an acknowledgment.

After several more days with no further information from 1and1, Seller called them.  Here is what he sent me:

From: Seller
Sent: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 2:44 PM
To: Brian Gothard
Subject: FYI: Re: CXXXXXXXXX – Follow Up..


I just spoke with Dave at 1and1. He is a manager at 1and1. He confirmed to me that they have moved some of the domains to your account. The move will finish tomorrow.



That is David Rubel.  Remember that name; he is the Billing Manager and he comes up quite often.  Notice he confirms that some of the domains have already been moved. That is an outright lie, as proven by the email Seller received the following day:

From: <redemption@1and1.com>
To: “Seller” Seller
Sent: Thursday, January 08, 2009 12:47 PM
Subject: CXXXXXXXXX contract move

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

We are currently having issues with our contracts not moving correctly.
We are working on resolving the issue as quickly as possible. What we can do for you is transfer the domains into another contract but this requires you to back up all of your information. If this is something that you would be interested in, email us back and we can start that process for you. We will be sending you an update via email once we have this issue resolved.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller replied immediately that they should just perform the transfer as requested.

So, as of January 8, we have several 1and1 employees admitting that they cannot accomplish the transfer, and that the domains are still not accessible by either Seller or myself.  That is a full month during which 1and1 was unable to provide any administrative interface to their customer.  No way to manage or control any of these 270+ domains.

The domains were not actually transferred until January 15, but I will continue the details in my next post.

1and1 Review: Dishonesty, Fraud, and Atrocious Customer Service

1and1 is the worst company I have ever dealt with.  1and1 is incompetent, dishonest, and participates in fraudulent activities against their customers.  Their internal systems are unreliable, regularly broken, and they are either unwilling or unable to correct their own errors after they occur.

1and1 provides web hosting and domain name services.  I have no experience with their web hosting, but a Google search for “1and1 reviews” turns up hundreds of very bad reviews.  The good ones are obviously boilerplate garbage supplied by the company itself for affiliates to use.  They are absolutely incapable of basic domain name services, as this series of posts will prove without a doubt, and their billing department is obviously designed to steal money from their clients.  Either that or they are so incompetent as to give that impression.

I have been trying for over three months to get my account straight with them, and they continue to stonewall me.  When I receive a response, they act like it is a brand new problem, even though I have submitted dozens of pages of documentation on over twenty occasions proving that the errors are theirs.  But most of the time they just ignore my requests for answers.  Their customer service is unresponsive most times, and antagonistic at others.

Even after all of the clearly documented evidence of their failures, they continue to keep me locked out of my account and refuse to provide access to services which are fully paid.

I continue to email and fax their Billing Department and “upper management” at least twice weekly, and they continue to act in an unprofessional and unethical manner.

As a lowly customer, we are not allowed to actually communicate with anyone in “upper management” so I am posting the full details of my complaint here in hopes that anyone at 1and1 with any modicum of care for the customer will find it and realize how incompetent and dishonest their employees are.

Please read the following series of posts before considering using 1and1.  I have made some strong accusations and claims here, and I intend to back every one of them up with facts and documentation.

Personally, I intend to avoid them like the plague after I get the existing mess straightened out.