Yesterday I received an e-mail inviting me to join THRYLL.COM promising “THRYLL.COM is a Members-Only community offering top apparel and gear from the most Extreme Action Sports brands at up to 70% off” and was a little worried.
It reminded me a lot of getting an e-mail from an unknown company called ShoppyBag where someone had tagged a photo of me and which required me to log in before seeing the photo, after which you entered your contact or email information and all of your friends were invited in the same way, and never actually being able to log in. So this is what I thought Thryll.com was at first glance. I created this blog entry to talk about the laundry list of things that Thryll.com was doing wrong which made me think they were sketchy.
So, below is the list of reasons that I had marked them off as a scam, however, the company does look to be actively engaged in remedying these problems (see their comments below – they e-mailed me with much of the same info) and I have to give them credit for trying to fix these things, even though they are not all fixed yet, they are working on it.
So I have not logged in and ordered anything from them, but I encourage people who have to post comments below talking about their experience.
So, here is the list of problems with Thryll.com that I found on 10-18-2011:
- (fixed) Absolutely no information or contact information about the company without creating a membership and/or logging in
- (fixed) Not a member of the BBB (they have posted a link to another service. BBB requires you to be in business for 1 year before becoming affiliated)
- No reviews on sites such as bizrate.com
- They send unsolicited e-mails (to lists they have probably purchased from sketchy third party companies or scraped from websites)
- When sending e-mails they don’t use a accredited e-mail service such as Contact Contact which advocates anti-spam
- (fixed) They don’t have or use SSL for transferring information such as usernames and passwords. All information is sent via plaintext across the internet:
- They use shared web hosting and their reverse DNS is not even set:
- Lack of followers / poor follower ratio on twitter:
- Poor data management. When you create an account you are signed up immediately. No confirmation e-mail required. Additionally you will be set up as a Male who’s birthday is 1/1/1970. This is poor programming / cutting corners. Also, does an e-commerce site really need your full birthday? I’m not giving that to a site where everything is transmitted in plaintext.
- No way of knowing why you were targeted: I originally received an e-mail from Thryll without signing up for it. Apparently they use cloudsponge.com as a way to allow you to log into your email account so that they can e-mail all of your contacts an invitation to Thryll (offering a $10 credit). The problem is that the invitation e-mail doesn’t tell you who inivted you. And as previously they are not using a well-know e-mail service to do this and so that makes the unsubscribe link sketchy (you always wonder if that is actually a “this email is legitimate, please keep spamming me” link)
- (fixed) No contact page, phone number, or company information on the website. If Thryll.com deals in e-commerce they need to be available to the end customer without a lot of trouble. If you have to log in to get to everything and you are having a password or hacked account issue (as you may have since the login is not SSL protected), that makes the phone number and contact information unavailable. An e-commerce company should be able to be contacted in more ways than just over social media. Imaging Amazon.com asking your grandma to tweet them if she needed assistance with an order.
Also, all of the links take you to log in to the site. The contact link does not work – even though it says “contact”.