09 March 2008

A letter to the president of Symantec

I've heard that when all else fails, writing to the president of the company sometimes works.


Dear Mr. Thompson,

I am writing to let you know about the terrible job your customer service people are doing, and to ask for your help in resolving the problem I have been having with your company.

My Norton Antivirus came up for automatic annual renewal recently. When I received my credit card statement, I saw that Symantec had double-charged me for the renewal fee of $49.99. The duplicate charge caused my credit card to go over its credit limit, so the credit card company had also charged me an over-limit fee.

I went to your website to try to resolve the duplicate-charge problem using the online chat option. The chat session was very frustrating and confusing, with your representative first saying there was no duplicate charge, then saying that the billings were for two different programs, then again saying there was no dupli-cate charge, etc. Eventually he suggested I fax a copy of my credit card statement to Symantec at 866-639-4216, which I did, along with an explanatory cover letter and a printout of the online chat session. I specifically requested a response by e-mail (I am mildly hearing-impaired and don’t like to use telephones when I can avoid it).

Eleven days later, having received no response whatsoever, I sent the fax again.

Yesterday – almost two full weeks after the second fax – I got a message on my phone answering machine asking me to call 800-379-2566. I called the number. I got an automated voice saying that I needed a "priority ID" to use the system and that there was a charge of $9.95 for doing so. I have no idea what a "priority ID" is – the phone message from Symantec had not mentioned this – and I certainly have no intention of paying Symantec ten dollars to correct its own billing mistake. Nothing I could do on the phone could get me to a live person.

Can you imagine how frustrating this experience has been? What would you think of a company which treated you like this when you tried to get them to fix a simple duplicate-billing error?

I am finished with trying to resolve this problem via your custo-mer service people. They are worse than useless. I want you per-sonally to take a hand in getting this problem fixed. I enclose a copy of the fax I sent, including the printout of the online chat session. What I mean by "getting this problem fixed" is that (1) the duplicate charge to my credit card is reversed, and (2) there is no interruption of the anti-virus protection I paid for.



It's now four weeks since I mailed this.....No results so far.

Update (12 March): See here.


Blogger tina FCD said...

WTF! It IS frustrating to try to get anything done through customer service. Just try canceling AOL!

10 March, 2008 06:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The squeaky wheel gets the grease as the saying goes...I hope you get results.

Speaking of AOL, since I canceled my paid account w/them recently I have been trying to keep my AOL e-mail address for free as they keep touting. I've already spent 40 minutes of my time on the net trying to do this with nary a result.

10 March, 2008 07:11  
Blogger Unknown said...

Have you given any thought to trying another anti-virus product? I've been using AVG Free for a while now and I love it.

10 March, 2008 11:21  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Oh, for sure, if I don't get satisfaction from these bozos very soon, I'm switching for sure. Thanks for the recommendation.

I had AOL years ago. I remember it was a huge pain canceling it.

10 March, 2008 11:39  
Blogger Ute said...

Ugh, how frustrating. :(

10 March, 2008 21:50  
Blogger Unknown said...


11 March, 2008 16:01  

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