Unethical Business Practices
Here was my experience with this company.
I renewed my annual hosting services with Total Internet Solutions on August 4, 2012, along with renewing two domain names and purchasing 4 additional domain names. These are all sole proprietor small business websites. They forced me into purchasing two years per each domain name as that was in the contract. The total cost at the time was $587.28 which include 420.00 for the domain names and 167.28 for a year of hosting.
On January 13, 2013, my website and email addresses went down and I contacted Total Internet Solutions to find out what had gone wrong. They stated that they were doing server hardware changes, but because they never sent out a notification that the hardware changes were taking place, I lost my entire database and the files that I had uploaded to my server. At that time, I requested that they provide me with an authorization code so that I could move my domain names to another provider due to all of the problems that I have had in the past with Total Internet Solution's server stability. They told me at the time that that I had to pay 70.00 per domain name to get the authorization code. At that time, because I had just spent a ton of money a few months prior, I was not able to afford to pay them more money. So I rebuilt my website from scratch again and put the files back on the server.
On April 15, 2013, I notified Total Internet Solutions that my emails and websites stopped working. The final conclusion was that my site was supposedly hacked and inappropriate material was placed on my website. They explained that they were going to file a notice with the IC3. I asked them to provide me with a copy of that notice and they told me it was private information. I asked them again for authorization codes and they said that I was just leasing the domain names from them and they couldn't give that to me or turn over the domain names to any other provider. I asked them to provide me with a backup of the files on my server and they told me that I had to sign up for a brand new account in order to get my files, at a cost of $344.00, and that I had to sign up for two years, as that was in their contract. I asked them how much it would cost to sign up for their DNS Management ONLY service and they told me it would cost me 475.00 per year. I told them that I would pay them to burn my files to disk and sign a waiver releasing them of liability if my content contained any viruses. The gentleman that I spoke to said they didn't have time for that type of thing and then starting trying to strong arm me into purchasing another account.
At no time did I receive a copy of any contract when I signed up with this company. I received an invoice after I paid with my credit card that lists the domain names that I purchased and the cost of the hosting account. That was all that I received. I printed a copy of the User Agreement from their website, and no where does it state that when you buy domain names from them, that you are leasing them. Nowhere does it state that you are required to purchase 2 years for domain name registration or for hosting service.
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