Feds: Top e-tailers profit from billion-dollar Web scam

Three companies have generated more than $1.4 billion by "misleading" Web shoppers into signing up for so-called loyalty program memberships, according to a Senate report.

Three companies have generated more than $1.4 billion by "misleading" Web shoppers into signing up for so-called loyalty program memberships, according to a Senate report (PDF) issued Tuesday.

Out of that money, the report charges, Webloyalty, Vertrue, and Affinion paid online retailers $792 million, and in exchange the retailers handed over access to their customers' credit cards.

The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation has spent six months investigating complaints from people who found mysterious charges on their credit card bill and don't know where they came from.

For more, read "Feds: Top e-tailers profitting from billion-dollar Web scam" from CNET News.