That’s one of the television ads in the Philippines of Western Union, the giant international money transfer facility that many people have learned to trust in sending money to their loved ones and one that is also being used by many individuals all over the world for their money transfer transactions.
The Western Union Mission Statement says: “We do business each day with absolute integrity, honesty and passion, partnering as a team to meet our consumers’ needs.“
So, is your money safe with Western Union? Are you sure it is a reliable money transfer facility? Please read on.
My daughters have received wedding cash gifts from friends and relatives in other countries using the Western Union money transfer facility, and because of that, I have so much trust in the facility. What’s more, I also heard about people receiving remittances through this facility and they have expressed their satisfaction.
But more than three months ago, something very devastating happened that resulted in the erosion of my trust in Western Union. My eldest daughter was cheated out of her payout which she used to receive regularly through this facility. My daughter is a work from home mom and she earns by working using the internet. Every month, she would receive a notice from Google Adsense informing her that her payout was already sent to Western Union, and she then would go straight to the facility to claim the exact amount without any problem.
But three months ago, when Google sent her payout through Western Union, my daughter was out of the country (March 26-April 3, 2012). The amount of US$6,267.97 was sent to her through Western Union on March 27, 2012, and it would be available for pick up on March 28, 2012. So hours after she returned to the Philippines on April 3, 2012, she went straight to Western Union to pick up her money, but to her dismay, she was told by the teller that someone picked it up on March 30, 2012. She was in Cambodia on that day and there was no way that she could have claimed the payment.
Google uses a security feature that when my daughter would access her account, a security code is sent to her mobile device and that security code should be entered for access to be allowed. She would need to enter her security code whenever she logged in to her account. Having received no security code all the time that she was overseas because her phone was on roaming mode, it was not possible that her account was hacked. So it is a big possibility that there was some kind of an inside job within the Western Union branch here in the Philippines that apparently released her payout.
Even the Western Union representatives were convinced that my daughter was the rightful recipient because of all her proofs. But they insisted that that they could not give her the money because they are only answerable to Google because of the privity of contract issue.
Western Union representatives did not act immediately after my daughter told them about her case, but after she told them that she would make it her advocacy to reveal to the public her issue with them, it was only then that they promised to make an investigation.
Later, after a thorough investigation, Western Union admitted that they made a mistake in releasing the money to someone who was not the real Jennifer Aspacio, and that they had already returned the money to Google, and that my daughter should communicate with Google to resend the payout to her.
My daughter asked Western Union to provide her with a proof that they really returned the money to Google, but Western Union refused to give a proof, claiming that it was against their policy. My daughter has suffered much inconvenience, damage and prejudice, apart from mental anguish and serious anxiety. The amount that she was supposed to receive was not all for her indulgence. Much of that amount would go to pay for advertising campaign expenses as an internet marketer.
My daughter is the one who is supposed to write this blog, but she told me that she does not want to go through the mental anguish that she had gone through three months ago that resulted in many sleepless nights for her, and so I am compelled to do this for her.
The refusal of Western Union to give the money to my daughter in spite of the fact that it was already established that my daughter is the true legitimate recipient is an IMMORAL ACT. Why did they have to return the money to Google, when they could just simply give it to my daughter, and that would solve the problem? And what’s more, Western Union refuses to give a proof that they indeed had returned the money to Google.
My daughter is a hard-working wife and mother, wanting only the best for her family. She doesn’t deserve this kind of treatment from a giant company like Western Union.