Readers Digest Scam

30 of 36 Readers Digest reviews

The other day I received a book with "Free Gift Enclosed" on the box.I wondered why they were sending this book but thought maybe it was because they want me to renew my subscription.

Well three days later the bill came for my free book for a total of $42.75!

I called Readers Digest and got someone with broken English in Manila Philippians. He said he would send me a mailing sticker to send the book back and only when they received it back would they credit my account.

He said it was generated my our e-mail account yet myself nor my husband ordered it.

I don't know what Readers Digest is trying to pull but it is a pretty shoddy deal if you ask me.

This review is a subjective opinion of a user.
Report Comment

More Review Details

Review category
Periodicals & Publishing
review #144874
Had an experience with Readers Digest? Submit review ›
Helpful? 4 Yes 4 7 No 7
Had the same issue 0 Yes 0
30 of 36 Readers Digest reviews

Jun 21, 2014 #830185 Orlando, Florida, United States

When a company sends you something like a book which you did not ask for, they cannot then send you a bill expecting payment. By law any unsolicited items sent to you are yours to keep and use for free.
"First and foremost, you need to understand that you are by no means obligated to pay for a product you never ordered. If an unsolicited product comes to you in the mail, the law says you are free to keep that product and do with it what you wish. If a company tries to make you pay for a product you didn’t order, you can report them to the U.S. Postal Inspector and get them in a heap of trouble."
"These rules are codified in Title 39, United States Code, Section 3009. That section of the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970 incorporates these protections for American consumers and makes the mailing of unordered merchandise unfair methods of competition and unfair trade practices under the law."

0 0 Reply

Oct 22, 2013 #731731 Lynn, Massachusetts, United States

Does anyone have the phone # to Reader's digest condensed books ? They are sending me them, unsolicited.

0 0 Reply

Nov 27, 2012 #574646

Hello, I work for Reader’s Digest in Customer Care and I just came across your post.
I'm sorry to hear that you received a notification that was not legitimate. Our notifications are delivered by certified 1st class mail. If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of your winners notification you can contact us at
One our agents will be most happy to verify the legitimacy of your notification.
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be of service.

0 0 Reply
R Worley

Nov 25, 2012 #573577

Readers Digest sent me a letter saying I won $2,685.28 and notice that I would be getting a larger payout for $500000. All I had to do was call them before cashing the check. If you look closely, the Reader Digest trade make is not there and it's on poor quality paper. The address is Austin, Tx 77023. It's a shame that some people will fall for this scam because the check is so real. John Cain was the Prize Disbursement person.

0 0 Reply
Vickie Colby

Aug 06, 2012 #525130

A few weeks ago I got two books from Readers Digest marked on the box as free gifts. There was no papers or bill inside the box. Not even a return address. Then today I got a bill for $30.71. I did not order these books nor have I ever ordered anything from Readers Digest in my life. Today I wrote them a letter telling them if they send me a return shipping lable I will send the books back but I will not pay for something I did not order. We should be able to send them a bill for waisting our time with *** we don't want or even read. From now on I will take any box's I get in mail back to the post office unopened if I didn't order or if I don't know who it is from. What a bunch of *** it is to even have to deal with this.

0 0 Reply

Jul 25, 2012 #519248

received a condensed book, no explanation & no account with readers digest and never ordered anything from them - a month later i received another book with a "FREE GIFT", again no explanation & again i never ordered anything. then 2 days later i received a bill for $31.00!!! it stated in red, BILL - return with amount due - make check payable to reader's digest - pay before august 15, 12 - no extensions granted.

0 0 Reply

Mar 14, 2012 #449130

I refuse to pay for unsolicited reading material, especially when it comes in a box clearly marked "Free Gift Enclosed". If Reader's Digest wishes to send me unsolicited books, I will read them, but NOT EVER pay for them. Will this scam ruin my credit score? March 14, 2012

0 0 Reply

Feb 16, 2012 #431067

I received a letter from Reader's Digest, 1853 Main St., Austin, TX, 77023, sigened by John Cain, Prize Dist. saying that I had won $500,000, with an enclosed cashiers check for $1,900.81. I called the number and was told by the woman who answered the phone that it was a good check, and when I questioned her extensively, she said she had to get with the tax department and would call me back..I have not heard back..

0 0 Reply
W.A. Nelson

Sep 20, 2011 #347150

They've done the same thing to me. I got an email thanking me for my order. I sent them an email saying I didn't order anything...They responded that they were cancelling the account. Today I got a bill from a collection agency saying I owe $42.85. I called and got the Phillipines and talked with a robotic human being named gina. They are sending me a return label for their *** book which is unopened. The only mistake they made in slamming me is that I work in Federal Law Enforcemnt...What they did is highly illegal... We'll see what happens!

0 0 Reply
Lyle Jacobs

Jun 28, 2011 #305584

Address to return nonorder book to RD in louisville KY.

0 0 Reply

May 17, 2011 #287267

Readers Digest Has Been Taken Over By The Nigerian Mafia? This is no longer the Readers Digest we knew, there are similar stories all the way back to 2005.Shame on you...... :
Readers Digest sent me a free PUZZLE BOOK that I had NOT asked for. Later they sent me a second book.My husband read on a forum about the fraudulent behavior of Readers Digest with their customers, sending a free gift and then billing them, each time they keep sending another ' free ' gift.Readers Digest even prints in big red letters on the box ' FREE GIFT '.When my husband called them today they agreed to refund us $ 19.98, but insisted that we still pay them $6. for the second book.We did not order the second book, I will NOT give in to Readers Digest, while they behave like some slimy crooks from Nigeria.
I pasted the comment from another Readers- Digest-Fraud-Victim below:
I received an unexpected package in the mail from readers digest.On the front was "free gift"It was a puzzle book with a pen with no correspondence.About two weeks later I received a bill in mail for $26.67 for the said "free gift"I never ordered anything from them and never have done.

I have sent them back the bill with a letter stating I didnt order anything so I am waiting for the reply.

Jeana of ocala , FL Dec. 12, 2011

0 0 Reply

May 02, 2011 #281521

Reader's Digest runs sweepstakes which, if you do not read the entry form correctly, will automatically sign you up for their books. They immediately send you out a thank you email but tell you not to reply to it as it won't be answered. If you email their customer service, they will tell you they cannot locate the account number and to try again in a couple of days. Then you get the book and a bill for $40 or so.
The best thing to do is wait until you get the book and NOT open the package. Then just write "refused. Return to sender" and drop in a mailbox. When they get the book back, unopened, they will cancel your account. You may have to do this more than once.
Their sweeps are consciously designed to confuse you with the hope that when you do get the book you will just pay for it. The fact that they send you an email saying thanks for the order, but no way to reply with a "no, I did not want to order anything" shows the caliber of their operation.

0 0 Reply

Jan 31, 2011 #242675

I too have gotten a letter from Readers Digest stating that I had won the Grand Prize. The check was for the amount of $3850.75 and all I needed to do was to call the Customer Care Rep. (Rebecca Klein) to recieve more info as to what I should do from here. I spoke to Mrs. Kline who told me all I needed to do was take the check to the bank and deposit it then call her back. This flew a BIG red flag in my mind so I found this site and as it turns out "A scam."
Be Careful out there.

0 0 Reply
James Black

Jun 29, 2010 #158792

Unfortunately this has happened to me today. Received a check for 4980.00 instructed to call and activate the check, deposit and call back with the information. After reading and researching I need to contact my bank immediately in the morning to be sure to stop this deposit, and to have not honor any charges from them. Hope it works.

0 0 Reply

Jun 28, 2010 #158576

I also recieved the check for 4980 dollars. I called bbb and Readers Digest, they informed me that this is a scam.

0 0 Reply
dennis gabbitas

Jun 10, 2010 #152540

we also recieved a letter for a supposedly readers digest sweepstakes. the check in our hand said.. $4,980.00.
we called this person as instructions stated. she said,(go to the bank, do not tell anyone and deposit now) so we did so.
the bank called a couple of hours later and told us it was a fraud.. wow!!!!!!
we did not buy it at first but, the truth is we should have seen it sooner..
no return on the envelope..


0 0 Reply
Linda Mazaleski

Jun 02, 2010 #149588

I received a letter in the mail with no return address. There was a check for $4,980.70 and a letter stating that I won this amount in 2009 and all I had to do was call this phone number to activate the check. It was a Readers Digest letter head and a guy named David Washington signed it. He was some kind of Prize Award Administrator. I called Readers Digest and they told me if I cased the check they would take all the money out of our account.

0 0 Reply

Aug 13, 2009 #66062

They sent me a book about a month ago. It said free book. I should have know better. Next thing I knew there was a bill for 29.95. I wrote them a letter because there was "no" phone number anywere on that bill. I told them that I did not even ask for the book and I did not want any books.
I never heard from them. Now today they send another huge book with "free gifts".
I went online and told them to please not send any more books and I was sending this one back. They sent it thinking I would be tricked in by the free gifts and then keep the book and then pay for it.

I have found this with many things. They draw you in with something free, but without you knowing it they automatically enroll you in a club or membership and begin sending all these things where you are obliged to pay for them.

0 0 Reply

1-20 of 21 comments

Great comment! Would you like to convert it into review?

You will be able to edit the text before publishing.

You May Also Like

You were reading a complaint about Readers Digest.
Filing a new complaint about