Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Why I Avoid Enrolling into Automatic Debit and Paperless Billing Plans

Direct TV is punishing me for not enrolling in the automatic debit and paperless billing option. They are making pay a higher rate because I refuse to enroll for paperless billing and automatic debit scheme. Well I have my reasons why I do enroll in this system. First, I do not want my bank information or card information in their computer system. If they have my card number with expiration date and CCV number which is the three numbers on the back of the card. My finances are not safe in their hands. I still prefer sending in a money order with snail or using Money Gram to send in a payment to them because I want to keep my financial information safe.

It is not because I do not trust Direct TV. I do not trust some of the people inside the corporation who have access to this information. I do not trust mailing in check either if they have my account number and routing number in a strangers hands today. I know it may convenient for Direct TV to automatically debit from my account on a certain day. I just worry about them double billing or even triple billing me for the same charge. I have seen things like this happen when I do not have control over my financial information or when I put my money in other people's control.

I want a physical paper bill mailed to me, I do not want the paperless billing because they can always change things if I check the information online. Regardless how good technology is making things convenient for the company. There is always the risk of my financial information being stolen no matter how secure they claim their system maybe. I do not use my bankcard shopping online; I now use a PayPal Money Pak for buying products online so no one can access my bank information.

Direct TV should respect the customer’s wishes to pay the old-fashioned way and not punish people who refuse to enroll in their automatic debit payment every month. It still feels like someone taking money out of my wallet every time they do because I never know when they do it. It is obvious paying my Satellite bill is going to be paid the old-fashioned way is the only safe way to go. I just do not trust my bank information in the hands of strangers. Today, financial privacy is more important then ever to keep our transactions away from prying eyes inside the government spooks and identity thieves. Do you agree?

Why punish me because I want to keep my information private? I always pay bill on time and I am never late. They get their money either way. I say no to automatic debit and paperless billing because I like to be in control when I can pay and not in the hands of strangers to take it at will. What is your opinion?


  1. I totally agree, realman! Heck, I don't even have a cell phone (and can't use it out here anyway) or a debit card. Sometimes "old school" is the best.

  2. > I now use a PayPal Money Pak for buying products online > so no one can access my bank information.

    do you? from the following discussion, it does not looke like it's working.

    Why all this instead of simply using credit card? even if the number is leaked and gets into wrong hands, your responsibility is zero, credit co. will cover it.

  3. Back to the realm of poor grammar. Please read your stuff before you post it realman. It insults your readers when you make things hard to read by leaving out words like "not".
    On to the post. DirecTV is a pain, but just like the TSA, sometimes if you want to fly, you have to get by. I have argued with DirecTV about many things, but they are no worse than any other service provider. The one I fear most is my bank. The bank has all the info they need to mess with me royally. Given that big banks all stink (read the customer ratings for national banks) you have to have a strategy to manage them AND your creditors.

    I make a habit of reviewing my expenditures with online banking at least once a week. Online banking doesn't cost me anything and if your bank offers fraud protection, and they should, then a weekly review let's me spot anything unusual and I KNOW the bills are being paid. I have had fraudulent charges on my bankcard and when I called the phone number provided, they were always very polite and fixed the problem.

    Fraudsters and identity thieves pray on people who are lazy and unobservant. A checkbook won't save you if someone charges your account an online banking charge or discovers your credit card number. There are good things about online bill pay and many service providers charge less for their services because they don't have to pursue the growing percentage of bad checks.

    Be smart, be observant and keep that shooter handy. So long pard.

  4. I dunno, seems like a lot of extra work for nothing. It's pretty safe using credit cards since you're not responsible for fraudulent charges. Paypal? Paypal is even less trustworthy than the big banks. Companies changing your online statement? I'm more paranoid than most but that's getting silly.

  5. With the proliferation of call centres in third and second world shit-holes, a lot of personal data is ending up in the hands of underpayed, resentful, half-educated kids who will happily sell that data on to some crime gang. Its happened to us already. The companies it happens to usually deny it and try to claim that you the customer are somehow responsible.

  6. The company might look forward and see that April is going to be a bad month, but that things will be fine in May. So they turn around and double-bill people in April, and push customer service desks to offer bill credits, rather than returning the money. Sure, some will eventually be paid back, rather than given a credit. But enough will take the bill credits, so that the company will not need to borrow any money to make up for the April shortfall.