Instead of atoning for their sins and begging for forgiveness, infoUSA, the firm that knowingly marketed lists of “gullible” seniors to known scammers, opted for a path of childish and defensive rebuttals:
CEO Vinod Gupta (pictured):
We have not perpetuated any illegal activity. We have over four million customers. If someone buys a gun and shoots someone, is the gun dealer responsible? No. We ask that our customers follow the law.
A different story, however, if the gun dealer knows they’re going to use to the gun to shoot someone.
Unfortunately, the New York Times story plays on public anger against these criminals and natural sympathy for their victims to imply that legitimate businesses like InfoUSA are culpable. It unfairly tars the reputation of the direct marketing and banking industries by emphasizing out of all proportion the sad circumstances of a single victim of someone else’s crime.
Multiple victims, actually. Somehow we’re never convinced when someone puffs up their chest and proclaims they’re a “legitimate business…”
CFO Stormy Dean:
If we were doing something wrong, the F.T.C. would have investigated us, and to the best of our knowledge, the F.T.C. has never opened an investigation. If the FTC has never alleged misuse of data, then we must be doing it right.
Don’t worry, we’re sure those fortunes will shortly change.
Ed Mallin, president of InfoUSA services group:
My people aren’t investigators, they’re marketers, and it’s unfair to expect them to know everything about who is buying from us and every database that is listed on our Web site.”
Except when your internal emails indicate that your people knew they were dealing with skeezeballs. — BEN POPKEN
2 Firms Tied to Phone Lists Will Review Their Policies [NYT]
infoUSA Responds to New York Times Article About 3-Year Old, Closed Investigation into Telemarketing Scams [infoUSA]
PREVIOUSLY: infoUSA Marketed Lists Of “Gullible” Seniors To Known Scammers, Wachvoia Processed The Unsigned Checks