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BeThrifty.ie – Beware!

I’ve noticed some publicity in the last week or so for a new website called BeThrifty.ie, which describes itself as “Ireland’s Online Cashback Community”. The site works in a similar way to the rewards website Pigsback.com except that they’ll pay you back cash rather than PiggyPoints.

Last Sunday, Gareth Naughton featured it in a short piece in his Personal Finance column in the Sunday Tribune.  According to the article, available here:

The average Irish person spent €1,700 online last year, and that is set to increase as people turn to the internet in search of better bargains. Recently-launched website www.bethrifty.ie offers shoppers the opportunity to buy online and receive cash back on their purchases.

When someone logs into the website and starts shopping with one of the retailers featured (companies include HMV, Qantas and Eircom), they qualify to receive cash back – either a straightforward payment per purchase or a percentage of the money they have spent. The website acts as a referrer but, instead of keeping the commission from the retailer, it is passed on to the consumer.

Then yesterday, Tina Leonard gave the site a glowing reference in her Smart Consumer column in the Irish Independent:

Our current favourite is www.bethrifty.ie.
Launched in April, and already boasting 8,000 members, this is a ‘cash-back’ website like the type popular in the US and UK, where you actually make money.
Basically you become a member, which is free, and then you can link through the site to around 2,000 companies to make online purchases.
For each purchase made you get a cash amount or percentage of the sale price sent to your bank or PayPal account by Bethrifty.
Honestly, there is no catch.

Unfortunately, there is a catch. And quite a big one as far as I’m concerned. In order to get your cash rewards, you have to either provide BeThrifty.ie with your PayPal details, or your bank account details.

However, nowhere on the website do BeThrifty.ie provide any details of who’s behind the website, where they’re based, or how to contact them in person. There are no physical addresses, no phone numbers and no e-mail addresses.

I’d be wary of providing any financial details such as bank accounts to a website that doesn’t provide you with such details.

Consider what position you’d be in if a sum of money went missing from your bank account and you needed to contact them to find out what the problem was?

7 comments On BeThrifty.ie – Beware!

  • Wow! How is it that these journalists haven’t copped on to that glaring issue?

    Copying and pasting press releases unquestioningly I suppose!

  • Glenn Gillespie

    Hi

    Just like to give a response here, I am the part owner of bethrifty.ie. If you were to read previous media coverage, which is featured on our site, you will see the whole back story on myself. Just for the record we are based in Dundrum, Dublin. We have a contact section on the website and many members have been in contact via email. We offer paypal as an option so because it is generally regarded as a safe way to transfer money. Its not as if we are looking foe=r credit card details etc.
    If anyone would care to contact me, particulary the original poster, my email address is glenn@bethrifty.ie.
    I can also be contacted on 0833004671. Hope this enough information.
    Thanks.

  • Glenn Gillespie

    Hi

    My name is Glenn Gillespie, co-owner of http://www.bethrifty.ie. Please get in touch re any concers you may have about our site. Im sure you understand the damage a post like this can do to our reputation. If you would like to give me a chance to respond, Im available at this email glenn@bethrifty.ie, or you can contact me direct on 0833004671.

    Just to clear up another matter, I have been interviewed by several radio stations, the sun newspaper and by Tina Leonard herself. I am not an anonymous figure lurking in the background!

    Regards

    Glenn Gillespie

    BeThrifty.ie| Shopping Online Makes Cents!

  • These concerns have been raised already on the Bargain Alerts on Boards.ie back in March.

    http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=59520062

  • Glenn Gillespie

    I’d really appreciate you getting in touch with me directly. I think you’ll find that we are both fighting the same fight, your website is obviously great for Irish consumers and I believe that mine is too.

    I can assure you that our members have nothing to fear from us, we are absolutley on their side. We will never share their personal info with third parties and we are definitley not out to commit fraud by robbing them, which is the warning that your post seems to be giving. This is completley unfair and ungrounded, and but for the careful arrangement of your words, would be considered libellous.

    Also, simply giving someone your bank details doesn’t open you up to fraud. Next time you get a cheque from someone, notice that their bank details are printed on the bottom. The next time you get an invoice, notice that the company has most likely provided their bank details for BACS payment. Myself and my partner are qualified accountants( as you would have noticed had you read our coverage in media, as featured on our site). We know what we are talking about here. And paypal is used by the biggest brands in the world as a secure method of payment, so why would you attempt to stir up negative publicity for us because we use these methods to pay our members?

    Because of this, I would hope that you would do the right thing and say yourself that our site is secure, and a great resource for consumers. Or at least allow this to be posted on your site.

    Regards

    Glenn Gillespie

    BeThrifty.ie| Shopping Online Makes Cents!

  • Hi
    I have used the bethrify website and will not be doing so again. I booked my holiday through the website in good faith, it was the discount offered that spurred me to make the booking. The payment has now been declined!!! Hw can this be?? how can a website offer cashback and decline payment.

  • Hi
    All of our contact details are now on the website. We have been taking criticisms and suggestions on-board. Our site is extremely secure, we are now concentrating on building a solid reputation. We would urge our members to be patient if they have any queries, we actively follow up on all issues and are in the process of trying to resolve a few as I write this. I would like to take this opportunity,if I may, to point out that we have successfully paid approx 90% of members’ cashback, the rest we are following up on on their behalf. We work hard with our stores and advertising affiliates to get every cent our members earn. I’d like to also thank our members for their continued support.

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