Submission Number: 00009
Received: 10/10/2012 11:23:05 PM
Commenter: Rob Jefferson
Agency: Federal Trade Commission
Initiative: Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of Showplace, Inc., also doing business as Showplace Rent-to-Own and Showplace Lease/Purchase; FTC File No. 1123151
Attachments: No Attachments
I work at a rental store that uses this product. I will not mention the name, but we have several stores in different states. When we signed up for this software we had to go through training and during the training we were told that we had to give disclosure to our customers and once we transferred ownership we had to remove the software. They provided several examples of disclosure documents, but said it was up to us to determine proper disclosure.
Secondly, every time you turn on the computer it gives you a chance to turn off the computer if you do not agree with the terms. This is customizable to your needs. We do not use that feature, we turn it off, because customers complain about accepting it each and every time they turn it on. There is no real reason for this because they sign acknowledgement in writing anyway.
Now when you install the program there is no way to install anything other than a killswitch and backup/restore which is called the F3. The only way to take a picture or screenshot is to go through a restricted process and mark the computer stolen. It is my understanding that the killswitch downloads the monitoring software from the website and installs it when you mark a computer as stolen. Once it is installed, information is collected and emailed directly to our senior management team so they can discover who and where the unit is. Once the computer is recovered all this information is shredded. This information is never stored anywhere and is never shared with any 3rd party. This would also be in violation of the EULA which we signed.
I have NEVER seen, nor heard, of anyone in my company marking a computer stolen when it was not and if we did we would be violating the EULA. Why would we do that? I wonder why you at the FTC did not determine these facts for yourself. I have also Goggled and discovered that there are several packages that do exactly the same thing, therefore I would expect people to just purchase the software from another vendor.
The same product is available for Apple products and the same exact program has been used to locate stolen iPads and iPhones. Here is the same software http://www.kgw.com/news/Police-Flight-attendant-stole-passengers-iPad-170841491.html being used to arrest an airline flight attended that took an Apple. How is this any different? I respectively submit that you properly do a real investigation into this. If you do, then you will discover that only someone that was trying to steal these computers was ever spied on just like this flight attended was.
Respectfully submitted, Mr. Rob Jefferson