busted_logo_640
in

Company statements: The Busted Edition

Click the link name below to jump to the corresponding statement.

 

Air Canada

Marketplace reported that Air Canada had the worst on-time arrival record of any major international airline in 2012. It responded with the following emailed statement:
 

The safe operation of all flights is always our paramount concern even if it affects on-time departure. Delays can occur for a number of reasons, many of which are outside an airline's control, including weather and airport operations. Additionally, with flights at record levels of customer capacity, all major airlines in Canada are experiencing challenges, including delays. Air Canada is now engaged in a company-wide, on-time-performance initiative that is resulting in continuous improvement in this area.



MasterCard

MasterCard does not charge any extraordinary fees to acquirers or issuers for gaming or gambling specific transactions, including purchasing lottery tickets. Fees associated with gaming or gambling specific transactions are at the discretion of the banks. These fees and all others are outlined in the cardholder agreement between the consumer and the issuer.



Globali

We contacted Globali.com to inform them of our report, and asked them to respond to the various aspects in our report. The company sent two statements, both included below.

First statement:

Globali.com is a product designed to deter auto theft, a problem that costs Canadians a billion dollars each year. Globali.com also helps law enforcement recover stolen vehicles and tackle organized crime. We know this from feedback provided through our relationships with auto theft police specialists, government and our participating automotive dealers.

Globali.com's theft deterrent system begins when a participating dealer registers into our database a vehicle coming into inventory. At that point theft coverage becomes effective. Then, when the vehicle is sold, the globali.com coverage can be transferred to the buyer at the buyer's request. In agreeing to the optional transfer, the buyer becomes the beneficiary of the benefit provided by globali.com, should that vehicle be stolen within four years of being registered no matter its age. We are in dealerships every 6-8 weeks to ensure they understand the globali.com product and its benefits.

Car buyers who choose the globali.com coverage make a smart decision. We've paid out $23 million in benefits to Canadian car owners who have suffered a theft, over and above their regular insurance coverage.

Our branded globali.com program stickers, affixed by trained dealer professionals in 10 locations on a vehicle, act as a deterrent to criminals. But even if a sticker is peeled off, its special adhesive leaves a UV imprint on the car's painted surface that can be seen under a specific black light that we provide to auto theft investigators. We have never had a situation where one of our stickers, properly applied, has been removed and the imprint removed using ordinary means. We would be quick to address any issue found with the performance of our marking system.

Globali.com is helping to deter auto theft one vehicle at a time, whether from a driveway or dealer's lot. We have worked closely with law enforcement who specialize in auto theft to develop a product of value for consumers and car dealers. They tell us, unreservedly, that globali.com makes a difference.

 

Second statement:

As we were not given the opportunity to respond to your questions on-air, we will instead address your issues in writing, as they were presented to us.

Globali.com is a product designed to deter auto theft, a problem that costs Canadians a billion dollars each year. Globali.com also helps law enforcement officers recover stolen vehicles and tackle organized crime. Globali.com enjoys positive reviews from members of the automotive business, anti-theft and fraud law enforcement specialists, and many consumers - especially those who have experienced a vehicle theft firsthand and have received benefits from globali.com.

At present there are 4,106,484 marked and registered vehicles within the globali.com vehicle registry and recovery network. Since 1998, more than 5,000 Canadians have been paid claims totaling more than $23 million with globali.com.

We will be reporting that the Globali.com stickers are easily removed, as are the Ultraviolet (UV) numbers.

Our branded globali.com program stickers, affixed by trained dealer professionals in 10 locations on a vehicle, act as a deterrent to criminals. If a sticker is peeled off, its special adhesive contains a UV tracer developed by 3M that imprints a registration number on the car's painted surface that can be seen under a specific-frequency black light that we provide to auto theft investigators. We have never had a situation where one of our stickers, properly applied, has been removed and the imprint removed using ordinary means. We would be quick to address any issue found with the performance of our marking system. Stickers are also designed to protect the paint in cases where consumers decline the product and wish to remove stickers.

We will also be reporting that a buyer we tested did not have his car registered in the Globali.com system.

Every vehicle protected by globali.com is registered first at the dealer level. So we are not clear as to how this could have happened. The registration is on the vehicle, not the customer. We would require the VIN of your "Buyer Tested" vehicle to give you an accurate response.

But for your information, globali.com's theft deterrent system begins when a participating dealer registers a vehicle coming into inventory as part of our database. The vehicle is registered and insurance coverage provided when the dealership inputs the vehicle VIN, Stock Number and Theft Identification Number. To provide the insured with "in the event of theft" coverage, the underwriter requires the dealership to mark and register its entire vehicle inventory. We are in dealerships every 6-8 weeks to ensure they understand the globali.com product and its benefits.

When the vehicle is sold, the globali.com coverage can be transferred to the buyer at the buyer's request. In agreeing to the optional transfer, the buyer becomes the beneficiary of the benefit provided by globali.com, should that vehicle be stolen within four years of being registered, regardless of the age of the vehicle. Within that four years, coverage varies depending on whether the vehicle is recovered. Should a registered vehicle be stolen and not recovered during the term of 4 years from the time the vehicle was registered, the product is deemed to have failed and the owner of the vehicle is entitled to a $4,000 benefit over and above insurance coverage. Should a registered vehicle be stolen and recovered during the term of 4 years from the time the vehicle was registered, the product is deemed to have failed and the owner of the vehicle at that time would be reimbursed their auto insurance deductible up to $2,500. In Quebec, the maximum benefit is a full refund of the purchase price of the product.

Globali.com coverage stays with the registered vehicle throughout the four year period - even when the vehicle is sold. Benefits are awarded to the owner of the vehicle at the time of the claim.

When we attempted to register the vehicle ourselves, we were not asked to supply the Globali.com sticker number. We were directed to register the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) in the Globali.com database.

Our online VIN registry was developed in response to auto theft investigators who wanted a way to contact customers as part of their investigations while also respecting Canadian privacy guidelines. The registry is optional and is not required to activate coverage.

We understand the potential confusion around the voluntary customer contact registry. As stated above, the coverage is with the vehicle not the customer. When the product features and benefits of globali.com are explained to the customer during the vehicle sales process at a dealership, the customer is given the option to purchase the balance of the coverage that started when the vehicle was originally taken into inventory and registered. If the customer takes advantage of the coverage, we are not required to take the step of assigning coverage to the consumer. Only at time of claim do we verify the person making the claim is the owner of the registered vehicle that was stolen.

We developed the contact registry at the request of the auto theft investigators utilizing our program. They informed us that from time to time they suspect a vehicle is stolen but are not able to contact the owner as they are not allowed to enter a vehicle to locate ownership information due to privacy issues. They felt that if we encouraged vehicle owners to append their contact information to the VIN of the vehicle, through the secure globali.com network, law enforcement could make contact with the customer directly as circumstances dictate.

We have learned, and will be reporting, that car buyers are told that they must purchase the Globali.com product for hundreds of dollars.

The globali.com product has proven value, is optional, and must be disclosed by the dealer as part of the vehicle sales process. This is consistent with all information found on our web site, in our training documentation and on materials left for consumers in dealerships.

We work with government automotive regulatory agencies across Canada to mandate full presentation and disclosure of our product during the dealer sales process. In our dealership training we stress the importance of providing a potential customer with complete product features, benefits and limitations of this optional product. We explain how the product is of value and that it must be fully disclosed as a purchased line item on the vehicle bill of sale.

If the customer does not want to take advantage of the product, the dealership cancels the coverage when the purchased vehicle is delivered to the customer. As the product's identifying stickers are rather time-consuming to remove, we leave it to the dealer's discretion whether or not to remove it from the sold vehicle. Our stickers act as a deterrent to crime.

We will be reporting that Globali.com is intended to be a profit center for automotive dealerships.

Globali.com is a product with proven value and tangible benefits borne out by our customers, auto dealers and law enforcement. Like any product and service, there are costs to administer and maintain it. Dealers initiate the first steps of theft-deterrence and benefit coverage by marking and registering the vehicle for which they pay a fee. They have a right to later re-sell the product to vehicle buyers who choose to carry on the coverage. Should dealers choose to make a profit for their time involved in registering and reregistering vehicle coverage, that is their prerogative.

In addition, we have talked with several police forces across Canada which are either unaware of your product or have rarely, if ever, used the Globali.com product.

Our globali.com product has a proven impact on the deterrence of auto theft and helping victims of auto theft. With the support of advocates in law enforcement and others, we continue to focus on education and awareness.

We would not generally expect the average police force to be aware of globali.com. Auto theft units are a specialized division within law enforcement. Investigators are small in number and highly skilled. Leaders in this specialized form of crime prevention and investigation do know us. More than 200 investigators are currently registered in our database.

Globali.com is helping to deter auto theft one vehicle at a time, whether from a driveway or a dealer's lot. We have worked closely with law enforcement who specialize in auto theft to develop a product of value for consumers and car dealers. They tell us, unreservedly, that globali.com makes a difference."

 

Additional commentary by Kim Derry

Kim Derry joined the Toronto Police Service in 1973. During his policing career he has performed uniform, undercover and investigative duties along with administrative assignments. He was appointed Deputy Chief of Police in August 2005 and placed in charge of Divisional Policing Command where he was responsible for 4,000 uniform officers assigned to the 17 Policing Divisions throughout the City of Toronto. He focused on Toronto Anti-Violence, Traffic, Crime Prevention, CCTV, Youth, School Resource Officer (SRO) and the In-Car Camera programs.

Former Deputy Derry holds a Certificate in Criminal Justice and Administration from Quantico - FBI Academy, University of Virginia and a Certificate in Police Leadership Program from the University of Toronto, Rotman School of Business Management. In 1994 he was awarded the Canadian Police Exemplary Service Medal for meritorious service to policing and the Chief of Police Award for community service in 2002. In 2007 he received the Governor General's Investiture of the Order of Merit of the Police Forces, Officer level. In 2009 he was awarded the Silver Wolf Medal from Scouts Canada for outstanding service to scouting in Canada.

Former Deputy Derry is a past member of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police, served as Chair to Crime Prevention, was a member of the Information & Technology Committees, the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety & Correction Services' Policing Standards Advisory Committee and the Common Police Environment Group. He is a member of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police having served on their Crime Prevention and Informatics Committees and currently serves on their Technology Committee. He is also a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the FBI National Academy Associates. He was the 2010 President on the National Board of the FBI National Academy Associates worldwide having held the distinction of being the first ever Canadian President.

Security companies, police, the public, the media and companies like globali.com have an important shared role in the fight against vehicle theft. Having been the deputy chief of the largest municipal police service in Canada and 4th largest in North America, I have firsthand knowledge of auto theft and fraud and its cost to Canadians. I also have knowledge of similar criminal networks who exploit auto theft and fraud around the world. Auto theft and fraud-related crimes from unrecovered stolen cars requires a different approach and all the tools we can muster. As such I completely support crime prevention programs that have been undertaken to associate property to identification of ownership in an attempt to stem the growing property crimes trend.

We (meaning the media, courts, and in some cases the general public) view auto theft or fraud as a nuisance or minor crime that young people engage in for joy riding, or, a crime that affects the insurance industry. This could not be further from the truth.

When you look at auto fraud superficially it is easy to say nothing works. But looking more closely, theft has been reduced by nearly 50 per cent in places such as Toronto by embracing and using programs such as globali.com identification and micro dots and manufacturing enhancements. There is still a problem when over 5,000 cars are stolen in Toronto each year alone and 10 to 15 percent are never recovered. But prevention and deterrent programs support the 85 percent recovery.

No crime prevention program will stop every crime, however, when we target offenders, we increase the likelihood of apprehension. When we make it harder to steal or remove identifiers on a vehicle we are more likely to have an impact on the crime.

Organized crime, not teenage joy riders, is the real focus of theft deterrent and recovery programs. Organized crime groups make millions of dollars and then channel those funds into other enterprises such as guns, drugs and terrorism. The law enforcement community supported by the IBC and a handful of companies such as globali.com are trying to stem auto theft through prevention programs of deterrence. It is less attractive for thieves to steal cars that have such markings such as those provided by Globali.com

Globali.com is revamping its database based on feedback from over 20 police services and feedback from US and Canadian law enforcement agencies, city license inspectors and border agents. Globali.com takes the issue of prevention seriously.

It is easy to say that criminals can simply remove these stickers but the reality is that these same criminals grind off serial numbers and remove VIN numbers also. Globali.com is using new technology and locations to make it harder for the average criminal to successfully remove these owner-identifiable numbers.

By simply stating that the removal of globali.com stickers renders the program useless is like saying a VIN plate has no value given it is removed quite often and thereby renders the VIN identification system including the current serial numbers no value. That is simply not correct.

When a globali.com sticker or the UV number is found on a body part it can accurately point the police to the owner and dispute the body part to an illegal VIN plate. If there is no secondary system there is no dispute in most cases only suspicion.

Law enforcement generally has reduced its police resource dedication to stolen autos as the demand to address other crimes requires redeployment. In the past every police service had experts in the auto theft field and most officers working the streets valued their knowledge in the auto fraud, re-VINing and trans-shipping world-wide. Unfortunately, many of these officers are retiring and/or are being redeployed but they have known about globali.com for many years and have used globali.com database to solve crimes.

Globali.com, keep up the great work, address the education of our police officers and keep demonstrating success through reduced thefts and increased prosecution. Law enforcement, keep up the good work closing chop shops. And Marketplace, please educate our officers and the general public on the positive programs that companies like globali.com make available in the fight against organized crime, auto theft and fraud."

 

Additional commentary by Ronald G. Bain

Ron Bain has extensive experience in both policing and government, having served with Peel Regional Police, the Parry Sound Police Force, and Metropolitan Toronto Police Service for over 32 years. He retired as Deputy Chief of Peel Regional Police in 2004 where he was in charge of policing operations. Mr. Bain also retired from the OACP's Board of Directors that year, where he held the position of Vice President and was appointed a Life Member of that organization.

Mr. Bain was subsequently appointed as the Assistant Deputy Minister, Policing Services Division, Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, from 2004 to 2006 with a mandate to ensure that Ontario has first class policing services. As a result of a request from the Premier, Ron was also appointed as the Senior Investigator for the Province's SARS Commission with Justice Archie Campbell.

Globali.com is like an extended warranty. Lots of people see value in it. If you've ever been the unfortunate victim of auto theft you would appreciate its purpose even more.

Auto theft is part of a criminal continuum that ranges from joy riders to gangs right up to organized crime rings. Organized crime often target specific cars and concentrate in certain geographic areas. These guys are the most difficult to identify and then prosecute because they are quite accomplished in what they're doing. It is among this group that programs like these are most effective in disrupting their criminal activity and deterring the theft in the first place. In addition, these measures assist with vehicle identification and recovery.

The bottom line is this: whether a sticker or marking is removed or defaced, or the VIN plate itself is removed, that vehicle unique identifiers still resides in the globali.com database as well as the national stolen vehicle database known as CPIC. No amount of prevention can entirely stop professional car thieves and organized crime rings from using sophisticated means to steal and benefit from vehicle theft. But when it comes to disruption strategies and recovery assistance, globali.com and others have a proven role to play. Whether a sticker can or cannot be removed is no big deal in the big picture of things, in my opinion.

It is not a surprise to me that a random survey of police services or front-line police officers finds those who aren't aware of globali.com or the many other specific products out there. The successful recovery of most stolen vehicles is a specialized function, even those specialist investigators constantly seek out new strategies that may be out there. That's why we work with globali.com and the Canadian Police Knowledge Network to get the word out in our constant fight against vehicle theft and chop shops.

 

Kobe Beef

Three restaurants responded to our investigation. Here's what they had to say:
 

Spice Route Asian Bistro:

At Spice Route Asian Bistro, we value our guests and take pride in serving top quality products. Our menu includes specialty items that feature Kobe beef. We pay a premium for this product through a Kobe beef supplier, separate from our regular beef supplier, and all invoices state that it is Kobe beef. We trust our suppliers and the products we purchase from them. We are committed to our guests, believe in our products, and providing quality cuisine and service will continue to be our top priority.

e11even:

e11even prides itself on using the highest quality products in our menu items and in offering a variety of food experiences for our guests. We do list Kobe beef as an ingredient on our menu. Over the years restaurants like e11even, as well as butchers and food stores in Canada have commonly used the term "Kobe" to refer to American Wagyu or top quality beef. We understand that the use of the name Kobe has recently become the subject of some discussion. It has never been our intention to create a misimpression for our guests, and we have always been forthcoming about the source of all of our products whenever asked. e11even remains committed to product quality, pricing that fairly reflects this quality and to service excellence.

Milestones:

Milestones is committed to providing high-quality and craveable menu items to guests. Our menu includes Kobe Style Classic Beef Sliders, Kobe Style Classic Meatloaf and a limited-time Kobe Style Bucatini Bolognese, all of which are made from Kobe Classic Beef, a premium product from domestically raised Wagyu that have been cross-bred with Angus Cattle.

Milestones' Kobe Classic Beef conforms to Canadian standards to be recognized as "Kobe Style Beef." The full program is monitored by Kobe Classic Beef Inc. and Wagyu Canada Inc. to ensure its quality and compliance.

At Milestones, we maintain the highest standards in all we do, including our commitment to accuracy in our menu descriptions. We are pleased to offer this unique, premium product at our restaurants.