Unauthorized Charges

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Updated 6/24/06 1:55pm (all times are West Coast time)

Latest post at bottom (order of posts changed 4/10/06 10:12am for ease of reading)

2/6/06 the START of this.

On 2/3/06 early am Our Credit Card Clearing house made a deposit to our account followed on 2/6/06 with another one.

(CDGcommerce 888-586-3346 x7 or http://www.cdgcommerce.com)

At about 1pm on 2/6/06 we received a call from a gentleman asking why we took $115.81 from his account. This was when we discovered unearned deposits had been made by CDGcommerce and a problem existed.

CDG was called and they started their investigation as to what happened. On 2/7 and 2/8 additional deposits were also made (all in the early am). Today 2/8 CDG sent us an e-mail stating that an ACH Debit will be hitting our bank account today to reverse all of the Visa/MC funds deposited to date. Discover card should follow shortly after that. CDG has suggested that everything should be straightened out by the weekend (2/10-11/06).

This all came about because a merchant miss-keyed their (MID) merchant’s identifying Merchant-ID when they setup their account, and that MID was ours.

We apologize for the problems this has caused. In our defense (Software Products and CDG's) this came about thru no action of ours, and in fact will cost CDG hundreds of dollars for the fee's charged by the Credit Card Co's, not counting the time lost by both of our companies dealing with this fu-pa, that also may not be recoverable.

If you have any questions/concerns not answered please call us.

James Ellis
Software Products
800-547-6987 (24/7)


A total of 5 unearned deposits have now been made, the last on 2/8/06.

CDGcommerce has informed us that everything should be completely resolved (Credits issued to wrongfully debited accounts) by close of business 2/13/06.

We are however NOT PLEASED with the way CDGcommerce has dealt with this problem. Missed commitments and additional deposits made when they said no more deposits would be made, not to mention debits greater than the deposits being processed, are not making us happy. If the date of 2/13/06 to resolve this is met we will be pleasantly surprised.


No additional unearned deposits have made since 2/8/06.

This whole thing has gotten worse. The only good news is that the incorrect charges seem to have stopped as of 2/8/06.

Our advice to all the people that have had their credit cards charged is to dispute the charges with their credit card company.

CDGcommerce at this point is confused as to what has been credited/debited to our account. This confusion has caused some harsh words to be exchanged between CDGcommerce and Software Products. Chris West, CDGcommerce (888) 586-3346 x802 (310) 388-1224 Fax, has assured us that he will get to the bottom of the problem today (2/14/06) and email us with his findings. We are not holding our breath!

We have now discovered that the charges originated with "Jazzwine" (1-978-649-1105) a restaurant in MA. and that people were credited and charged (by their clearing house not "Jazzwine") to try to correct the mistake by their "computer" provider. It just gets more and more interesting.


This whole episode should be put to bed today (at least for Software Products). Let me explain. The account that the money was moved to and from has been closed, no more transfers are posable. When CDGcommerce sends us their wire transfer details we will wire them the mutually agreed amount of unearned deposits, closing the financial commitments between Software Products and CDGcommerce in this matter.

A number of misunderstandings of the problem by us, CDGcommerce, and a real screwup by some automaton bureaucrat at our bank has greatly exacerbated this issue. Which caused the undeserved harsh words to CDGcommerce on our part and delaying the resolution by 3-4 days, has given me a very unsettling view of how the electronic funds transfer system works.

In fairness, CDGcommerce and Software Products were forced into this by some dumb A** that miss keyed the MID (merchant’s identifying Merchant-ID) at "Jazzwine" (it was not Jazzwine but someone they hired to setup their credit card acceptance system). This has cost Software Products and CDGcommerce hundreds of dollars that most likely will not be recovered, and in talking to "Jazzwine" it has been a real problem with their cash flow in their first few days after opening their doors, and will undoubtedly effect their image, as well as cost them money also. As a side note, CDGcommerce has told us that they are not affiliated with Jazzwine. It was a "victim" that figured it out and told us where the charges origanated from. Jazzwine's clearing house would not tell CDGcommerce who the merchant was.


The matter is closed for Software Products. Also all Software Products Merchant accounts have been closed. Please Remember Software Products and CDGcommerce had nothing to do with the charges being made.

Our advice to everyone that had their credit card charged, and the charge is attributed to MACSP.COM, plus the charge has not been reversed is to dispute the charge with their credit card company.

There is nothing more we can do on our end to fix the problem.


We thought the matter was closed. Today We received a demand for payment from United Bank Card (CDGcommerce's bank we think) because they could not "dip" into our closed account. This has just gotten absurd.

The exact amount of all unearned deposits was returned and all accounts were closed and still the banks want more. Unable to contact the bank, closed Saturday, left message for Chris West of CDGcommerce. (the call was never returned)


Talked to United Bank Card (Maria), referred her to this web page, she said that she would have her supervisor call us back.

Several hours later she (Maria) called back and said that the demand was canceled and that the "demand for payment" was to be ignored.


Have now received a demand for payment from Discover Network when they could not get into our closed account. Could not contact, it was after hours and they were closed.

It now looks like every Card company and Bank in the chain is going to get into this, even though all the accounts were closed, and thought settled, a month ago. Looking forward to letters from Visa, American Express, Master Card, and Lord knows who else threatening our credit if payment is not made.

My suggestion to everyone is to stay as far away from anything to do with Electronic Funds Transfer as you can.

All someone needs is your bank account number and they can take whatever they want from it, your bank assumes you gave them permission. You have to dispute the debit after it happens.

You can not deny a person/company from taking funds, only a person/company and an exact amount (an individual debit to your account). That person can then change the amount by one penny and it starts all over again. Talk about a screwed up system.


Called Discover Network (1-800-347-1355 Ext. 1111) Sue answered, referred her to this web page when she finished looking at it, she said she would refer the problem to "Elaine" for resolution and call us back today.

Discover Network called back (Robin) and said that they would zero out the charges and close the account, we thought the account had been closed on the 19th of Feburary.

We can hardly wait for the next letter.


Didn't see this coming.

We received a second letter today from the Discover Network signed by (well more accurately printed) "Elaine", for some reason big companys don't hire people with last names.

The letter states " ** Final Notice ** "

With the first sentence "Numerous attempts", We guess that numerous defined by the Discover Network is just one letter when the rest of the world defines numerous as -great in number or consisting of many members (many more than one)- the sentence continues "have been made to resolve the delinquent balance of $******* on your Discover Network Merchant account." Apparently calls to the appointed Phone number (1-800-347-1355 Ext. 1111) the next available business day (3/22/06 see above) do not count. The letter further states "Be advised that Discover Network maintains the right to refer your Merchant account for further collection measures, or legal action if necessary to resolve this delinquency." This almost sounds like it could be Extortion to Us, well maybe it is just ineptitude, since on the 22nd of March Robin, of the Discover Network, called us back and said that the problem had been resolved (see previous post 3/22/06 just above).

We will again call the Discover Network (1-800-347-1355 Ext. 1111, one or two more times and we will put it on speed dial) and attempt to talk to Elaine, if she is a real person, on Monday the 10th of April as the Discover Network is now closed for the weekend.

It should be an education to hear their explanation of why this current letter even exists and what they hope to accomplish with it.


4/10/06 7:19am

Called Discover Network (1-800-347-1355 Ext. 1111) Michelle answered.

Michelle asked for my Merchant ID and said she would see if Elaine was available. Was put on hold. Michelle returned and said Elaine was not available and was there anything she could help me with explaining that they had attempted to debit our account and were unable to do so. I referred Michelle to this web page, Michelle said she was not in the collections department. I told Michelle that we were very upset that the second letter was sent and the letter lied about our contacts with them (Discover Network). Michelle said she would talk to Elaine and/or Robin and that "one of them would call us back today" on our 1-800-547-6987 number.

The way Michelle talked to me it appears that Elaine et all have not made any notes on our account records as to our contacts with them from the 22nd of March forward. It's a good thing we have "very acurate" records of all of our contacts with the Discover Network, as they suggest in their greeting "Your call my be monitored or recorded" we have taken that suggestion to heart.

Just musing if this is how they deal with all their Merchants.


4/10/06 about 8:10am

Called Discover Network (1-800-347-1355 Ext. 1111), surprise, Elaine answered.

Referred Elaine to this page. Was put on hold, but only for a few seconds. Elaine came back and said "I see that Regina called you on the 22nd". I corrected Elaine, that it was Robin that called back on the 22nd of March not Regina. Elaine responded that she would go down and talk to Robin and call back today.

I asked Elaine that we would also like a letter written from them with todays resolution spelled out, to avoid this happing again.

The ball is now in Elaine's (Discover Network) court. Can't wait for the return call.

4/11/06 12:55pm

Discover Network called back (Elaine) and said that they would credit the charges to the account, in effect making the balance zero, and close the account.

When asked to send a letter or email confirming this conversation Elaine said that she would not send a letter or email.

Elaine said we could verify the account (changes/closing) by logging into our account. I informed Elaine that we have never logged in and were unaware that we could, Elaine responded the changes would be reflected on the next statement. I informed her that we have also never received a statement, she responded that she would make sure that a statement would be mailed at the next closing period. I asked when that would be and she said the first of May.

Oh boy another 2-3 weeks to sway in the wind. I don't know whether to be pleased that this appears to be done or apprehensive that another letter will show up.


Received a letter from United Bank Card. (Liad Chazan-Mannino Assistant to the President (800) 201-0461 x174)

We found out from JazzWine sometime ago that a United Bank Card employee/rep is the "dumb A**" that miss-keyed the MID into JazzWine's terminal and started this BS.

The gist of the letter was that they were sorry to loose us as a customer (never was aware we were, we thought CDG Commerce was our vendor and United Bank Card was their bank) and would credit us with $100 if we would just come back to them and reopen our account, fat chance. They should be sending JazzWine, CDC and Software Products and maybe even the credit card companies, each a Check. The check should at least cover the actual costs if not also the lost time and aggravation of dealing with this.

It just amazes me as to how many "people" have their fingers in the Electronic Funds Transfer (Credit Card) pipeline. The best we can figure out, the pipeline for us goes (more accurately went) something like this:

1. Authorize.net (Had nothing at all to do with this fiasco, we were still in test mode when we closed our account with them.)
2. CDG Commerce
3. CDG's parent (forgot their name but CDG Commerce appears to be a reseller for them)
4. United Bank Card (can't quite figure out if they are CDG's or #3's "bank")
5. MasterCard or Visa or Discover or American Express

Would not be surprised to find out there are more on the list.

Every one of the above takes a percentage of the action. If the customer has a "rewards card" it's the merchant that takes the hit with a larger percentage, not anyone else in the chain. The percentage taken is usually more than the "rewards card" actually pays the card holder, more fingers in the soup. If the customer is "high risk" the merchant pays even a larger percentage of the sale to the pipeline. The "high risk" is attached somewhere in the pipeline, not quite sure by who. Only when the "pipeline" pays dose the merchant find out the percentage the pipeline actually took from each sale. Dosen't seam quite right.