CHICAGO (CBS) — These days, a good website can really boost business, so it’s no surprise many small companies are looking for online help.
But as CBS 2’s Mai Martinez reports, one local web design company is accused of stealing hundreds, even thousands, of dollars from their customers.
After decades in business, the owners of Evanston Awning wanted to expand their marketing to the Internet, so they hired Expedite Media Group to design and host their company website.
Ann Hunzinger says she and her husband made an agreement to allow Expedite Media withdraw and annual fee of $400 from their bank account. Hunzinger says things were fine for a couple of years, but then a bookkeeper discovered multiple irregular bank withdrawals by Expedite Media, which totaled nearly $26,000.
Hunzinger was shocked when she found out.
“Our company has been violated, and they have the nerve to just ignore us,” she says.
Expedite Media Group has an “F” rating with the Better Business Bureau. Eighty-five complaints have been lodged against the company.
“They are double-billed, tripled-billed, quadruple-billed individuals, not knowing that their card is being charged again,” says Steve Bernas, President and CEO of the BBB of Chicago and Northern Illinois.
Robert Hinds has been trying for months to get answers about why Expedite Media withdrew a total of $1,300 from his bank account after he terminated the agreement between his company, Combat Consulting, and the web-design firm.
“They’re still out there. They’re still doing business. That’s kind of having that same robber come back to your house and rob you every week,” Hinds said.
When CBS 2 called the number listed for Expedite Media, a voicemail for another business picked up. In a written statement Monday, the company said it has worked with both the BBB and the Attorney General’s Office to rectify customer concerns on a case-by-case basis.
The Attorney General’s Office says it has received more than 30 complaints about Expedite Media Group. The A.G. is currently investigating the company.