Free Armored Safe From World Reserve Review: How To Get Fleeced

November 2, 2009
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Bankers Grand Armored Safe

Bankers Grand Armored Safe

Part of a continuing series examining misleading/false newspaper ads that newspapers know or should know are designed to fleece their readers.

The latest full-page ad in The Courant and other newspapers is a “World Reserve” free armored safe giveaway that will cost you $300 and in return get you a cheap safe worth less than $100 and $33.50 in coins and bills.

It’s a GREAT deal for “World Reserve” and for newspapers that run these full-page ads that cost thousands of dollars (for large papers, tens of thousands) per page.

There is so much information on the page that it is difficult for the average reader to focus on the two critical issues: the “Free Bankers Grand Armored Safe” and the never-circulated coins the company claims are worth more than face value.

The ad shows a photo of a man delivering a safe to a customer. The average reader assumes that the delivery man is not a midget and thinks the safe is at least 30 inches high and 24 inches wide and weighs a ton.

But, when I called the company to get my free claim code, “Jim,” the salesman, told me it is 21 inches high, 18 inch wide and 14 inches deep. And it only weighs 75 pounds.

Personal "hoard"

Personal "hoard"

That is the size of a small safe that you can buy for less than $100.

Jim insisted it was worth $438. I asked him how that was determined, and he said World Reserve told him the information.

I then made him calculate the face value of the coins and four $2 bills the company claims are worth $400.

The face value, he conceded, is $33.50.

He said some coin collectors could pay 10 times that. Sure, and the Easter Bunny lives.

So The Courant and World Reserve and lots of other newspapers want you to believe that for $300 a company is going to give you something valued or worth more than $800?

Unfortunately many people fall for this, otherwise World Reserve would be out of business by now.

Please, whenever you see the word FREE, turn the page quickly. And when someone says something is “worth” or “valued as much as,” ask yourself what do these words and phrases really mean?

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14 Responses to Free Armored Safe From World Reserve Review: How To Get Fleeced

  1. George on November 12, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    Thanks for looking into this, George. I just finished reading the 2-page spread in PopSci magazine. I had to laugh at the offer of a “banker’s stack” of 4 $2 bills. The picture of the “horde” in the magazine looked like more than you’ll receive based on the description.

  2. George Gombossy on November 16, 2009 at 10:08 am

    I received the following email from a representative of World Reserve. I offered to let him post his comments and I also offered to sell him as many of the coins he claims are worth more than their face value. He did not respond to either offer. I also pointed out to him that I am still a journalist.
    The Dog

    From: Chris Pugh [mailto:cpugh@amch.com]
    Sent: Monday, November 09, 2009 3:25 PM
    To: George@usawatchdog.me
    Subject: Re: Your recent story about World Reserve Monetary Exchange

    Mr. Gombossy,

    First, thank you very much for your continuing efforts to serve as a watchdog for today’s busy consumer.

    As a former journalist, you are surely interested in reporting facts fully and accurately. The goal of this communication is to provide assistance to you concerning your November 2, 2009 story about World Reserve Monetary Exchange products. There are, frankly, several areas of concern.

    The Red Book is recognized in the coin collecting world as a reputable source for evaluating current collector value. Although you questioned the cost of the coins included in “free armored safe” promotion, you didn’t mention that The Red Book places the current collector value of the Presidential Dollars included in this collection at three times their face value. The Westward Journey Nickels have similarly escalated in collector value since their release.

    You also did not mention the Bankers Safe that is given free with purchase has a pry-resistant stainless steel door, stainless steel locking bolts, and heavy-duty chrome combination lock.

    Lastly, you state that the ad shows a large safe being delivered to a customer, creating confusion among potential purchasers. However, you fail to mention that the main photograph, which is prominently placed in the center of the ad, clearly shows that there are two safes available, one which is called the “Bankers Armored,”, the other the “Bankers Grand Armored.”

    By omitting these facts, yet reporting others which support your headline, your story is misleading to consumers. Because I recognize this is not your intent, I thought it would be appropriate to call these omissions to your attention.

    World Reserve Monetary Exchange is committed to ensuring that our customers fully understand the terms of our offers and that they are completely satisfied with the products they purchase from us. We believe our B-rating with the Better Business Bureau reflects that commitment.

    Though disappointed that we did not have an opportunity to discuss your story with you when you developed it, we hope that you will contact us in the future if you have any questions or need any information.

    Sincerely yours,
    Chris Pugh
    Multi-Media Communications Specialist
    Arthur Middleton Capital Holdings
    3939 Everhard Road N.W.
    Canton, Ohio 44709
    330-244-8286
    cpugh@amch.com

    ________________________________________
    This is a confidential communication. If you are not the intended recipient, you must: (1) Notify the sender of the error; (2) Destroy this communication entirely, including deletion of all associated attachment files from all individual and network storage devices; and (3) Refrain from copying or disseminating this communication by any means.

  3. Jim on November 19, 2009 at 6:34 pm

    I just now saw this ad in Popular Science. I also have read the remarks from the company above. Obviously this is a scam meant to pry money from those who simply don’t know any better. Popsci should be ashamed of themselves. Chris Pugh should ask himself why he feels comfortable defending a product he is not likely recommending to any of his family or friends.

  4. James on April 13, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Tom Harris in D.C. And his sidekick Ronald Voelker, both ran American Banknote in Chicago into the ground & bankrupsy, but they pocketed al load. Tom got to BEP, in DC and put his boy Ronald over the only other BEP in Texas.
    They have packed in their splinter cell and are makng shambles of both places to line their pockets. When their criminal and pervert buddies ruin the BEP. When they get finished wrecking both plants, pretend to be surprised when they get the private contracts.

  5. Lara Miller on June 20, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    The Spokesman-Review in Spokane, WA ran a full page for this today, aimed at “Aging parents” over age 52. While at first glance, it looks like a real editorial. I hope the area’s cash strapped seniors are not taken by this.

  6. richard on June 20, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    world reserve is running that same scam today in fort worth star telegram. buy a safe and get a bag full of money. cost of safe 281 dollars.

  7. joe on June 21, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    The Times Union in Albany NY had the “over 52″ version today. Glad I Googled it and found this page

  8. lbolden on June 22, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    My 89 year old dad saw the ad for a free safe in the San Antonio Express news and thought it was a wonderful offer. He could not wait for me to get home, so he called by at work to tell me. I, however know nothing is free. As I read further I found there was a low cost of 197.00. The ad never gave the dimensions of the safe, only a picture of a full sized one. You guys should all be ashamed of taking advantage of poor older people who only want to do something good for their families. I think this is absolutely horrible!

  9. Donna on June 23, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    The same two-page ad ran June 18 in Portland Oregonian. It clearly states “Paid Advertisement” and I’m sure World Reserve paid handsomely for the ad. It is also clearly aimed at Elderly folks stating “Aging parents avoid regret by replacing “important stuff” box” , so Shame on the Oregonian and all other newspapers for allowing this misleading garbage to be printed!!!!!

  10. John on July 9, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    New ad in the Phoenix paper 7/9/11. $197 for 18″x21″x14″ non moveable shelves. They then offer upgade to a 23″x38″x16″ with moveable shelves for $497. A rip-off.

  11. Slick231 on August 15, 2011 at 3:43 am

    Thanks, appreciate the heads-up. Yep, I was tempted, I’m going to buy a safe in the next few weeks and this looked “too” good to be true. Think I’ll just go ahead and buy a plain old safe. ;-)

    • Shorty Kellems on August 26, 2011 at 12:08 am

      There are no burglary safes available anywhere but a safe store. The crap “home safes” in Home Depot and Office Max is Chinese sheet metal garbage, that will rust from the inside out.
      Beware and stay away from such names as:
      Sentry,Brinks,Honeywell, or any safe that is made in China.

      Some of the Chinese safes may offer an hour or so of fire-protection, but offer zero burglary protection, and all will fail in other ways from shoddy materials and workmanship, as well as internal rust, within a few years.

  12. Sue on August 25, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    USA TODAY add now offered to a younger crowd… free shipping if over 42. I guess those over 52 are smarter than to go for this junk!

  13. drake on March 21, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Got safe from Mom with no instructions only combination that doesn’t open safe. Any suggestions?

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