NAD Recommends SquareTrade Modify, Discontinue Certain Claims; Finds Company Can Support Certain Modified Claims

New York, NY – April 16,  2015 – The National Advertising Division has determined that determined that SquareTrade, Inc., can support certain revised savings claims for the company’s “SquareTrade Protection Plans,” but emphasized the company’s responsibility to monitor the marketplace to ensure that the savings claims remain accurate.

NAD also noted that the advertiser voluntarily committed to permanently discontinue comparisons to Best Buy Stores, LP, on its “Tech Support” webpage and the claim “Best Warranty at the Best Price,” an action that NAD found to be necessary. NAD also recommended the advertiser modify or discontinue certain claims.

NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation. It is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

Best Buy Stores, which offers technical services and protection plans through its “Geek Squad” brand, challenged advertising claims made by SquareTrade. During the course of NAD’s review, SquareTrade voluntarily modified or discontinue certain claims – including the savings claims initially challenged by Best Buy.

Following its review of the evidence in the record, NAD recommended that the advertiser:

  • Modify the disclosures to make clear that the advertised savings extend to older-model smartphones and iPhones and that disclosures be placed in much closer proximity to the savings claims they are qualifying.
  • Modify the claim “Top-rated and trusted by those who matter most” to  “highly rated” (or substantially similar language) to more accurately reflect SquareTrade’s high customer ratings by Amazon, Apple App Store, and Google.
  • Discontinue its reference to the BBB in connection with any “rating” claim.
  • Remove the logos and all other references to news organizations including statements that imply specific news organizations’ endorsement of SquareTrade’s services. 
  • Modify disclosures that appear in a comparison chart to specify equipment models that are covered under the SquareTrade protection plan and ensure that references to telephone service providers are accurate.
  • Discontinue the claim “Same day service at your local shop reimbursed.”
  • Modify the “next-day replacement” claim to indicate that a replacement is shipped upon approval of the claim. 

SquareTrade, in its advertiser’s statement, said the company “appreciates the opportunity to participate in the self-regulatory process and will take NAD’s recommendations into account in updating its website.”