11-05-2006, 04:24 PM #1New Member
- Join Date
- Oct 2005
ECSPortal & ServerOrigin *STOLE* my money
I'll start with some background for this story, I still can't believe it's been over 2
weeks and no response from either company (several e-mails sent) - it's beyond
ridiculous at this point.
Around September 15th, I have signed up for a VPS offer with ECSPortal. I
located the offer here, through WebHostingTalk.com, but signed up directly with
the merchant if memory serves.
Kevin Hatfield, who was apparently the owner and one of the main tech
employees in the company, had communicated with me along the way. Overall,
he was very pleasant and everything went smoothly in setting up my VPS.
4 days or so after setting it up, I went on a trip. After discussing my options with
Kevin via e-mail, I decided to deposit a $78 sum, which should suffice in the case
I need an upgrade to a dedicated server (my sites were growing daily back then)
during my holiday. Kevin gladly agreed, and said he would be monitoring my
server, and if the load is too high, will get me upgraded.
Amount: $78.00 USD
Transaction ID: 75M97281UT1756227
Subject: Hosting fees
This is in case I need a dedicated server for the month. If not, this will roll
forward to towards next month's VPS fees.
down, and apparently have been down for several days. Needless to say, I have
lost quite a bit of money right there.
I contact their support, requesting a quick reboot, and receive a reply 6 hours
later (not too great for a simple reboot request...), stating they noticed the
problem, but didn't have my root password so they could not reboot the
I supplied the password, server was rebooted, a few minor problems - and it
was all over, everything is back in action.
Days go by, and I keep receiving screaming notes from SiteUptime.com (uptime
monitoring service) about my site being down, up again, down, up again etc.
I decide to upgrade to a dedicated box without waiting for Kevin to do that for
me, and I contact him. In return, he asks on October 12th, how much am I
looking to upgrade to.
I respond requesting their existing offers, and waiting for input. In return, I
receive a message 12 hours later from Kevin, stating he is on the road, and will
be back in the evening, and will send me a list of the existing offers, so I can
3 days pass, my VPS constantly going up or down, and then I receive this lovely
announcement from Kevin (after repeatedly e-mailing him):
I have been working to try and get everything fixed for you but I have been
unable to contact the tech person with ECSPortal the last couple of days.
ECSPortal was recently purchased from us 2 weeks ago and we have been
handling some of the excess support but unable to access the VPS servers. How
much longer is on your plan at ECSPortal? If this keeps happening the simplest
thing would be for us to move you to ServerOrigin and our servers with more
high end servers. We could offer you:
If this is of interest to you, please let us know. We can get you moved and
hopefully get these problems resolved.
that he would not be providing me with their range of dedicated servers for me
to choose. That's for 3 whole days. He is also trying to convince me to move to
his new company, which is not too ethical for a business owner who just sold his
business, but we'll leave that aside - not my business. However, that's not the
fun part, just yet
I send Kevin a rather worried e-mail asking why wasn't I informed, what can I do
to actually move on etc. - and receive an e-mail apologizing, stating he can no
longer support me, as he no longer owns a part of my account...
Instead, I receive the contact details for Mark Lily, the new owner of
ECSPortal.com - and of course I contact him soon enough.
Meanwhile, I requested that whoever is responsible for my $78 balance, to have
it paid back to my paypal account - I specifically said I don't know if that money is
under his responsibility, or under the new owner's responsibility, but I'd like it
refunded (that's the amount I paid that was never used up, in case I would need
I receive a very delightful response form Kevin:
Once again. That balance is not in my pocket nor my business. You will
need to contact THE OWNER of ECSPortal.Com. The owner's email address is:
that's the first time - anyhow...).
Back to Mark Lily - he politely requested for the paypal transaction ID for this
specific transaction. I have provided the requested ID, and kept waiting...
meanwhile, I also required a refund for this past month of hosting, as the
downtime was simply intolerable (admittedly, most of it - at least in the
beginning - was caused by the heavy load from my sites, but the time it took to
resolve issues was simply intolerable, not to mention the below - read on).
Around that point in time, my VPS service was shut down completely (it's now
around 20 days since it's been shut down, and I have no access to it, and no
contact from the hosting company). Don't think for a second I've been notified of
that or anything, that's still just a guess -
Since around October 15th or so, I have no access to my hosting, my sites are
down, and nothing is accessible. I contacted ECSPortal's support, and around 24
hours later was assured that my ticket was "the first in the queue".
Mark Lily then responded stating:
the IP addresses for those two servers are:
Those are not our nameservers. They appear to be part of the layeredtech.com
Please send me more information and i'll keep working on this for you.
for my DNS. Either way, you would at least expect the new company owner to be
able to at least locate my account on his existing servers, right?
Well, that hasn't happened.
Since that point, none of these two lovely gentlemen have been responding to
my e-mails. At some point, I started threatening to go public with the story, since
they won't refund my money, or admit their mistake.
I've lost the following:
1) At least 1 website I have had no backup for, which I recently purchased for
2) A $250 advertising campaign I purchased led to a dead website for at least 7
days or so. The site was generating around $10 per day before my server was
killed, and after I got it back up, it's now at around $0.5-$1 per day, so you could
say I've lost another site which averaged around $10 a day.
3) All my other sites were down for at least a few days, causing revenue & traffic
4) $78 in deposited balance (in good faith...), plus a $41 or so payment for 1
month of VPS service, which I can hardly say was worth the price.
To be honest - I don't really care who's to blame here. Both company owners
have been completely unprofessional in handling this, and have left me hanging
in mid air. Then, they decided to just ignore me hoping I'm going to disappear.
Adi Friedman, Partner.
Two Believers Web Holdings.
11-05-2006, 04:35 PM #2Web Hosting Master
- Join Date
- Feb 2004
- Merville BC
Wouldnt Kevin Hatfield is the person to pay back the money via paypal?Three out of four people make up 75 percent of the population
11-06-2006, 12:16 PM #3Junior Guru
- Join Date
- Sep 2002
"At least 1 website I have had no backup for"
I know that you have enough problems to deal with now, but perhaps this can be a lesson for others. Don't get yourself in a situation where you have data on a server that's not backed up. Anything can go wrong. Don't let the lack of a backup make a bad situation worse.
Hope you work things out, Adi!VPS/VDS Resources: virtual-dedicated-server.info
11-06-2006, 03:49 PM #4WHT Addict
- Join Date
- May 2005
Send the two parties an email advising them of this thread. I would love to hear how they handle this mess.
Hope you resolve this Ados, but it doesn't look good.
Interested in how you chose this host. Was it from reading comments on Forums?
11-08-2006, 12:03 AM #5Community Guide
- Join Date
- Nov 2005
- Minneapolis, MN
ServerOrigin ran a 50% off VPS sale a few weeks ago that was pretty popular in the advertising section. Now their domain is hosted by DreamHost, and all they have up is a support page. You can try opening a ticket, but the ticket I opened was deleted with no response. They have an email server configured to be "localhost.localdomain" that keeps trying to send me e-mail.Eric Spaeth
Enterprise Network Engineer :: Hosting Hobbyist :: Master of Procrastination
"The really cool thing about facts is they remain true regardless of who states them."
11-08-2006, 04:42 AM #6Disabled
- Join Date
- Jul 2002
You know if you use an actual credit card or checking account to pay for things there are Federal laws and bank policies that make dealing with situations like this a non-issue. It's certainly an unfortunate situation and you have my sympathies for all the technical problems this is doubtlessly going to cause, but you sound like you're old enough to know better than to use PayPal.