[Proof] AlphaVantage.co is a scam
On 18 July 2021, I subscribed to https://www.alphavantage.co. I thought they provided live stock data. They gave me an API key to get data from their server.
Within a day on 19 July, I was getting only historical data from their API. This was not what I wanted to pay for.
I contacted their support by email and requested to unsubscribe me and issue a refund.
Recently, I have paid for your API.
Today is 19 JUL 2021 but your API is showing the data of 16 JUL 2021.
I find your API useless if I do not get realtime RSI, CCI, BBANDS, etc data.
If your API is not able to give data in realtime, how can I use it to trade in realtime?
I am confused.
On the same day, a person named Dan from their customer support, replied:
Thank you for reaching out!
For US securities, our data is refreshed after market close on a daily basis, as is indicated in our API documentation. Our forex and cryptocurrency data feeds are real-time.
If you are interested in realtime data for the US markets, we have partnered with Polygon.io, a leading provider of realtime market data streamed directly from the exchanges. Polygon counts Google, Robinhood, and Ripple as its customers, and is among the most affordable exchange-approved providers of realtime US market data. Specifically, you can get realtime daily and intraday time series through Polygon’s Aggregates API endpoint. Our Global Quote API also maps directly to Polygon’s Last Quote endpoint.
Alpha Vantage users will enjoy a lifetime 10% discount for their Polygon subscriptions. To unlock the discount, simply sign up for Polygon using your Alpha Vantage user email and enter the code ALPHAV on the subscription page.
On that very day, I sent the following reply:
I have already used your code ALPHAV and purchased the API from Polygon.io.
I do not need your API in this circumstance as it is not realtime. So…
Can you please return the money (about $100 USD) I paid to your company?
Please check and let me know your feedback.
24 hours has not passed since my purchased and here is what Dan replied:
Per company policy, we typically do NOT issue refunds.
On that very day on 19 July 2021, I sent the following message to Dan:
This is total dishonesty.
I just subscribed yesterday mistakenly and quit today.
You can charge me for one day for maximum.
But if you take away all my money, this is nothing but a hijack.
Don’t hijack my money
So… What happened next? These criminals stopped communicating.
On 20 July 2021, I sent an email with this title: Unsubscribe me right now
Recently, I mistakenly unsubscribed to your service.
Please unsubscribe me immediately from your service and delete my card information.
Then send me a confirmation email.
Again, the scammers did not care to reply.
On 21 July 2021, I sent another email with this title: Unsubscribe me
Previously, I requested to unsubscribe me from your service and delete my card information.
But you are neither replying nor giving any update.
Give me an update.
They were silent.
On 22 July 2021, I sent another email with the title: Why don’t you unsubscribe?
What’s your problem?
I have repeatedly requested you to unsubscribe me from your bullshit service and delete my card information.
But you are hiding and prefer not to reply.
First of all, you are selling useless information and now not cooperating to unsubscribe.
Why are you acting like criminals?
You have already crossed the limit.
UNSUBSCRIBE ME TODAY AND CONFIRM.
This time they were silent again.
On 30 July 2021, I sent another email with this title: I shall start dispute
I have tried to contact you several times but you have suspiciously avoided any communication.
I have contacted my bank and they have advised me to start a dispute.
I am asking for the last time:
— I have abandoned your useless service within a day. Will you refund my money or not?
— I have requested to unsubscribe me completely and delete my card information. Have you unsubscribed me from your
monthly paid service and deleted my card information?
If I do not hear from you soon, a dispute will start as per the suggestion of my bank.
Guess what? They were silent again. The scammers were not afraid at all.
I wanted to contact my bank and wanted to start a dispute. On 05 October 2021, I sent this email to my bank:
Subject: Attn: Customer Resolution Team
I wanted to see the live stock price of American stocks.
So, I subscribed to the API service of this company: https://www.alphavantage.co
I paid for monthly service.
I thought they provided live stock price data but within 24 hours I could find that they provided old data only.
I contacted them within a day. I asked for a refund and informed that I did not want to use their service as they did not provide live data.
These frauds did not issue any refund.
I requested to remove my debit card so that they do not charge my debit card.
These frauds are continuously charging my debit card every month even though I informed them within 24 hours that I did not want to use their service.
The most frustrating and dangerous thing is – they neither stop charging every month nor even care about replying.
They are so outrageous they do not care to reply to my emails let alone stopping monthly payments.
I warned them that I should start a dispute but these criminals were not afraid at all and continued charging my debit card ending 3755.
I use my card to pay for other services.
So, please do not stop online payment of my card.
I want two things from the Bank:
1. Return the money those frauds forcefully charged me
2. A guarantee that they would never charge my card again
I have attached all the screenshots.
A person from my bank contacted within two days and I explained everything to that person. Then I requested him to charge back the money the scammers have taken from my card. The person from my bank said that it was a long process and they will let me know within three months.
I was in another country. My international roaming was turned on. So, the long communication/conversation with my bank was costly and it was around $100 USD.
On 15 October 2021 9:21 PM, I used a different email and sent another email with this title: Subscription query
I have two questions:
(1) Can I subscribe for one month only?
(2) What is the way to unsubscribe when I do not need your services?
As I used a different email, the scammers could not recognize me. At 11:34 PM, the previously mentioned scammer Dan replied:
If you ever need help with your subscription you can simply write here and we are happy to help.
If you would like to sign up for one month of premium you can do that on the premium page and then write here to let us know not to auto renew your subscription.
So, I sent the following reply at 11:51 PM on the very day:
Thank you for your quick reply.
I subscribed from email@example.com about 4 months ago.
I have requested many times to unsubscribe by sending emails from firstname.lastname@example.org.
You neither unsubscribed me nor cared to reply my emails from email@example.com
Moreover, you have been charging my file on card for the last two months too even though I have clearly mentioned that I did not want to use your services just after the first day of purchase.
Why are you not unsubscribing me and keep charging my card?
Please check and let me know your feedback.
As expected, the arrogant criminal and scammer avoided any further communication.
On 18 October 2021, I noticed something horrible. To my utter surprise, I found that they were charging my card every month and charged my debit card for three consecutive months, let alone unsubscribing and removing my card from their record even after my several requests to unsubscribe.
First, they charged me on 18 July 2021.
Second, they charged me on 18 August 2021.
Third, they charged me on 18 September 2021.
I decided to contact Boston Police department. On 18 October 2021, I attached all screenshots and sent the following email to 311 @ boston.gov, bpf @ bostonpolicefoundation.org, crime.stoppers @ pd.boston.gov with this subject: Crime report
I subscribed to https://www.alphavantage.co
LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/company/alpha-vantage-inc/about/
After subscribing to their service, I got access and found that I did not need their service.
I informed them within 24 hours and requested a refund.
They did not issue a refund.
They do not reply to my request to unsubscribe.
They are charging my card every month.
I have requested them to stop but they are doing it every month.
They did not keep any option so that I can unsubscribe myself from their websites.
These scammers are taking money from my debit card every month and avoiding any communication.
Please help me to stop them and get my money back.
Within 24 hours, I received an email from mayor @ boston.gov with CC to 311 @ boston.gov, bpf @ bostonpolicefoundation.org, crime.stoppers @ pd.boston.gov
Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We recommend that you contact the Attorney General’s Office of Consumer Complaints. They can be reached at 617-787-8400.
Mayor’s Correspondence Staff
On the same day, I posted two tweets from my Twitter acccount:
On 19 October 2021, I forward the reply from the Mayor’s office to: support @ alphavantage.co and customer_success @ alphavantage.co
Response from the Boston Police.
The scammers did not reply to this message. Maybe they were a bit surprised and did not expect that I would go this far.
On 19 October 2021, I noticed the refunds of July 2021, August 2021 and September 2021 appeared.
Surprisingly, I noticed they charged me again on 18 October 2021.
I sent an email to their customer support and they said they would refund it.
On 19 October 2021, They sent an email that said:
Could you please try not to cc Alpha Chain as they are not the same company? Also, could you please remove the social media postings?
In this horrible experience, although I got back my $400 USD, unfortunately I lost about $100 for International Roaming phone calls and another $100 for accounting fees for these unwanted transactions. What else? Please add all the pain, frustration, hassle and insult.
Soon I shall contact the Attorney General’s office.
Beware of these scammers!