I feel like a I got the bait-and-switch from my web host provider since they advertise "GeoTrust SSL" for $99. I purchased it, thinking the certificate is issued from geotrust.com, but then I get an email from Comodo saying they are providing it. My host provider says they get a discount by using Comodo.

I purchased the certificate with the understanding it would be issued by GeoTrust. I called the host provider and they said they usually expect it from GeoTrust, but someone from email support responded saying the product name is "GeoTrust SSL" but they use Comodo to get a discount.

I think this is bogus and unfair trade practice. However, searching for "GeoTrust" on google brings up a ton of websites selling "GeoTrust" certificates.

How can companies get away with this?

Since the host provider is part of BBB I plan to inform my host to update the purchase page on their website to state clearly that... "This certicate is provided at a discount and may be issued by a provider other than GeoTrust.com, such as Comodo.com"

Any feedback on this is appreciated.


Christopher I was looking for cheap wild card SSL's and realized there's a lot of companies selling certificates as affiliates and resellers. I ended up getting mine directly from GoDaddy.com using a 30% promo code which helped.

If your hosting company advertised GeoTrusT SSL certificates and they sent you a Comodo certificate I would email or call their billing department explain that you expected a GeoTrust SSL certificate as they have advertised and if they don't give you a GeoTrust certificate or refund you in full you'll be filing a charge back with your credit card company, as well as a complaint with the BBB. That'll get you your money back because a charge back you'll always win against the merchant, you'll get your money back and the merchant is hit with a fee as well as it looking very bad to their merchant provider who can increase their rates because of it and potentially close their account for too many.

They advertised one product and sent you another, it's pretty clear so let them know what your intentions are if they don't remedy the problem as well as suggest they update and make clear what SSL's they're selling.

  • Thanks Anagio. I typed my post in haste as I was a little frustrated. The actual webhost provider sent a response saying they will provide a refund, and if I purchase again I will get the certificate from GeoTrust. However, I plan to purchase it separately from GeoTrust so I can be certain where it comes from. The host provider has always been honest, but I was puzzled that one of the staff members sent a message contrary to what the host owner stated. Anyway, I guess the matter is resolved. From research it sounds like the higher priced SSL certificates are more trusted. – Christopher Dec 3 '12 at 0:24
  • @Christopher that's nice to know they offered a refund and to get you the proper certificate. Just know any of your online purchases are protected by your bank or card issuer. They value your business over a merchants who's hard to deal with. The banks don't lose any money they'll actually make a few bucks on the charge back. Not to say it's the first thing to try but when companies stopped responding or send generic replies. Any threat of a charge back gets you a personal response and fast. You'll hopefully makeup for the cost of the SSL in a year with your site. – Anagio Dec 3 '12 at 0:27

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