Rhinopoint Balked on Promise of Free Web Access, FTC Says

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The Federal Trade Commission yesterday accused Rhinopoint.com of cheating consumers out of approximately $500,000 and misleading them into revealing personal information.


The Web site, which currently is not operational, offered to pay consumers' Internet access in exchange for paying a $10 to $16 start-up fee and filling out an initial questionnaire profile and monthly surveys. Consumers gave their credit card numbers and income levels.


However, after collecting the start-up fee and questionnaire, the company rarely followed through with surveys or with the promise of free Internet access, the FTC said.


Rhinopoint provided free Internet access for less than 5 percent of consumers who signed up. Approximately 59,000 people registered, the FTC said.


Rhinopoint is operated by New Millennium Concepts Inc., Hoffman Estates, IL. A federal judge has frozen New Millennium's assets and barred the use of consumer data pending a trial, in which the FTC will seek a permanent halt to the company's operations.


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