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StormPay.com Update

On 30/1/06 Stormpay black mailed a lot of HYIPS and Surf businesses to deal ONLY with them. As soon as they all agreed and deposited the money in their StormPay accounts they FROZE all the accounts When we say all, we mean all: in fact, 12DailyPro related accounts are not the only one that have been frozen. All the accounts that were somehow involved with ANY autosurf program (NetIBA and StormPay approved...) have been frozen and the money in those accounts reversed; in most cases, even transactions that happened months before have been reversed.
Now, the dumbest and laziest of the investigators would well notice the big anomaly in here:
  • StormPay is the leading payment processor in the autosurf industry.
  • StormPay processes millions of dollars per month on behalf of hundreds of autosurf programs, which are StormPay and NetIBA approved.
  • After doing so for many months, on January the 30th 2006, StormPay contacts those autosurf programs and tell them that if they want to keep StormPay processing their payments, they MUST use only StormPay, as their payment processor. Basically, they have to drop any other payment system and give StormPay the exclusive for processing their payments.
  • This guarantees StormPay business a stunning 400% increase in a matter of 2 weeks as showed at Alexa.com; all the austosurf users that used to finance their autosurf accounts using a different payment processor, now open a StormPay account and transfer all their money into it.
  • When thousands of StormPay accounts are loaded with money, StormPay, just after one week from their successful attempt to monopolize the autosurf industry as their exclusive payment processor, announces that due to legal and security concerns most of the clients accounts at StormPay will be frozen and that the related balances will be zeroed (in many cases even more than that...hundreds of users have reported to the FTA that their account balance was showing negative figures from one day to another and that in many cases StormPay has charged their credit cards and bank account in order to bring the balance back to zero).
How comes that StormPay works for becoming the sole payment processor among autosurf programs, collects millions of dollars in a matter of days, doing so, and just after one week recognizes that the autosurf industry might be illegal and freezes tens of millions of dollars?
If all this was a very well planned huge scam, only the investigating authorities (FBI, more precisely) will tell; for sure, thousands of users have lost their money, here, and not only because of 12DailyPro or other autosurf program being ponzies.
A StormPay user who was asking for explanations on why his account was frozen and his balance zeroed, has received this answer, by StormPay, and kindly forwarded it to us:
...
I certainly do appreciate your frustration over this situation. I really can't answer the question about the location of any money you are owed to the extent that we simply don\'t know what funds will be available for reimbursement when the investigations wind down.
...
StormPay does not permit the processing of payments for any illegal program and our Terms of Service expressly prohibit the processing of any payments for any illegal Ponzi or Pyramid scheme. Our Terms of Service do expressly provide:

"17. Get Rich Quick" Schemes: Get Rich Quick Schemes are prohibited resell items by StormPay. Get Rich Quick schemes include any type of self-employment, start-up businesses, or investment opportunity where the claims of profit or returns on investment are unrealistic or unsupported. By law, if a business opportunity costs $500.00 USD or more, the promoter is required to support any claims regarding earnings or profits with written documentation.
...

How comes that for 3 years they have supported the autosurf industry and made millions in commissions? How comes that they have agreed to process their payments? How comes that they have even lowered their processing fees if they agreed to become NetIBA (owned by StormPay) certified? How could they certify hundreds of autosurf programs (including 12DailyPro) through NetIBA and not see that these were get-rich-quick schemes costing more than $500? And how comes that they even push the whole autosurf industry to drop other payment processors and use only StormPay, asking thousands of users to transfer theiur money involved with the autosurf industry into brand new, authorized stormPay accounts? And what does it mean that I really can't answer the question about the location of any money you are owed ? Does this mean that you own me money, but that you don't know where to get it from? Why? What did you do with that? How comes that you are unable to tell me what you did with that? Because if you were able to, you knew the location of the money that you owe me, wouldn't you? Would it be acceptable for my bank to erase the balance of my savings account and then tell me that they don't know where my money is?

But the above unlucky StormPay user, also received the following, by StormPay:

There are claims afloat that StormPay Inc. has performed unauthorized charges from customers' bank accounts or credit cards. StormPay can, and will prove to any and all investigators that all charges made were made from each individual's own computer, or a computer from which the customer has accessed, and was an authorized charge by that customer. StormPay Inc. intends to investigate each and every assertion wherein it has been claimed that StormPay Inc. initiated and unauthorized bank or credit card debit, and will prosecute those persons, and seek recovery of, all funds wrongfully charged back, including all costs involved to do so.
Well, in truth we have received many many complaints against StormPay exactly about the above; and the unlucky Stormpay users have desperately tried to get an answer by StormPay administrators with no success.
Let's have a look at at the complaint that the FTA has received by a user who got involved with the wrong company at the wrong time:
===============================
COMPLAINER INFORMATION
===============================
Name: Ashkan SerXXXXXX
Address: XXXXXX
City: Macon
State/Province: GA
Zip/Postal code: 31220
Country: USA
Phone: XXX-XXX-XXX
Email: XXXXXX@XXXXXX.com
===============================
COMPLAINT AGAINST
===============================
MERCHANT: www.stormpay.com
Complaint Title: Money not given back to me
Complaint Description: I deposited $600 in the Stormpay account on 1/24/06 from my bank account. I then tried to deposit the money back into my bank account on 1/27/06.
I waited the normal alloted time period for a transaction to occur about 5 days. I checked the status everyday and it would say \"Pending\" or \"processing\". This went on for about 2 weeks. On 2/11/06 I checked again and now it says the transaction is complete. I checked with my bank and there was no such money deposited in my account. I waited 2 more business days more days to see if the money would show up but never did.
Stormpay does not answer my questions and is not cooperative regarding this problem. They essentially have stolen my money.
How long this user must wait before getting an answer by StormPay? What this has to do with the ongoing investigation about the 12DailyPro issue?
Here is another one:
===============================
COMPLAINER INFORMATION
===============================
Name: Gregory S BrXXXXXX
Address: XXXXXX
City: McIntyre
State/Province: GA
Zip/Postal code: 31061
Country: USA
Phone: XXX-XXX-XXX
Email: XXXXXX@XXXXXX.net
===============================
COMPLAINT AGAINST
===============================
MERCHANT: www.stormpay.com
Complaint Title: took balance of funds left in the online payment processor account
Complaint Description: I deposited $10000 in the stormpay processor account. I did withdraw $6000 and deposit with an autosurf acct. and in Jan $4000 to the stormpay account of two of my family members which stormpay has zeroed out their accounts. I had $1509.00 left in my stormpay account and when I made a request to withdraw $1500.00, stormpay cancelled the direct deposit request and zeroed out my account. Out of the $10000 real cash I deposited in December I never received one dime out of stormpay from the $10000 I deposited. They claim they did chargebacks to the autosurf co.
If they are truly trying to return funds to those caught up in this mess I do not understand why stormpay could not see $10000 was placed with them and now is lost. I made requests through the BBB for resolution of this matter and made requests through Stormpays ticket process 12 days ago and received a response yesterday claiming they were trying to collect all the money they could and would try to repay as many in the industry as they could. They closed my ticket.
In Internet, commonly, to close a ticket means that the issue is closed, that no further action is required and/or will be taken: is this the way StormPay was meaning when declared above that StormPay Inc. intends to investigate each and every assertion wherein it has been claimed that StormPay Inc. initiated and unauthorized bank or credit card debit, and will prosecute those persons, and seek recovery of, all funds wrongfully charged back, including all costs involved to do so.?
Also, is it correct to erase an account balance, before even starting any investigation? Wouldn't it be more correct to erase an account balance only when an investigation on that account and related transactions has been made and only if the investigation results suggested to do so? How can a StormPay user that was not wise enough to take screenshots of their account regularly demonstrate his/her innocence and fights for his/her rights to het his/her money back?

Here are some points to consider regarding the Money Transmitter Act statutes to Suspend a Money Transmitter License:

Suspension or revocation of a Money Transmitter license; appeals. (1) The Director of the Department of Consumer and Business Services may by order suspend or revoke a license issued if that State Financial director finds that:
(f) The licensee has suspended payment of its obligations, has made an assignment for the benefit of its creditors or has admitted in writing its inability to pay its debts as they become due;
(k) The licensee has engaged in fraud in the conduct of the money transmission business;

(2) The suspension or revocation of a license shall not:
(a) Affect the licensee’s civil or criminal liability for acts committed prior to the suspension or revocation;
(b) Affect the liability of the surety on the licensee’s security device; or
(c) Entitle the licensee to a return of any part of the license or renewal fee.

(4) If required to protect the public interest, a license may be suspended without a hearing in accordance with the State Statute.

This appears to suggest that the Money Transmitter Act states that a Money Transmitter cannot suspend payment of its obligations, cannot make an assignment for the benefit of its creditors and cannot admit in writing its inability to pay its debts as they become due.
If this is the case, StormPay did not any rights to freeze accounts, erase the balances and ultimately suspend accounts.

The Future of StormPay

On March the 24th 2006, StormPay users were sent the following statement:
"Dear Valued StormPay customer,

Effective immediately StormPay Inc. will no longer accept payments for sales made outside of StormPay Auctions. If you are an online seller who wishes to sell your product or service through the StormPay system, your item must be sold using the StormPay Auctions feature. Listing in the StormPay Auctions is FREE of charge unless utilizing our inexpensive upgraded listing options.

Q: Why has StormPay implemented this new policy?
A: StormPay has rendered certain policy changes to insure a safer online experience for both buyers and sellers. This policy change allows StormPay to more closely monitor the products/services sold, insuring that sold items are within StormPay’s acceptable use policies.
Under these new policy guidelines, customers may no longer log into a StormPay account for the purpose of sending money to another online user, or “offsite” website sale. All “spends” and “receives” are and only can be for the specific purchase of a user’s auction listing and successful purchase of.
Subscriptions (recurring billing) is no longer supported by the StormPay system. All current subscriptions have been cancelled. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.
We appreciate your business. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

StormPay Inc."

The FTA has been told by a rather trustable source close to the Department of Financial Institutions of Tennesse that the money transmitter license N.95 expiring the next 04/15/2006 will not be granted renewal; it goes alone that the owner of that license is StormPay Inc
This, if the source will be confirmed, clearly explains the above StormPay statement and put them virtually out of business, as a payment processor. About the missing money, instead, the FBI investigation is still ongoing and it will require a bit more patience, before many Intenet users can get some justice.

If you have any material or personal experience to share with us, about StormPay, please, post it here. Particularly, we are looking for StormPay users whose money was frozen and not involved in any autosurf-related transaction or payment.

The FBI encourages anyone with information or who suspect being a victim, please contact the National Fraud Information Center at 1-800-876-7060 or the Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov.

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Read also:
The StormPay/12DailyPro Report (part one)
The StormPay/12DailyPro Report (part two)

 

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