In their lawsuit that alleges Digital Altitude was a $14 million dollar fraudulent business, the FTC identified The Upside LLC as

a California company managed by Mary Dee and primarily used to open merchant accounts for credit card processing.

Mary Dee being one of Digital Altitude’s principals and also a named defendant in the suit.

Whereas Mary Dee is currently still fighting the case, on June 29th the FTC and The Upside LLC filed a Joint Application.

If approved, the application sees The Upside LLC consent to a permanent injunction and monetary judgement.

As per the agreed permanent injunction, The Upside LLC is prohibited from engaging in

  • credit card laundering
  • making false or misleading statements to obtain payment processing services and
  • engaging in any tactics to avoid fraud and risk monitoring programs

With respect to Digital Altitude’s goods and services, the injunction prohibits The Upside LLC from misrepresenting

  • consumers who purchase Digital Altitude goods or services will earn or are likely to earn substantial income
  • consumers who purchase Digital Altitude goods or services will receive business coaching that will provide what the consumers need to build a successful online business and
  • facts material to consumers, such as total costs and any refund policy

In effect The Upside LLC has admitted Digital Altitude’s representation that it provided a blueprint for consumers to earn substantial income and build a successful business were baloney.

Settling Defendant relinquishes dominion and all legal and equitable right, title, and interest in all assets transferred pursuant to this Order and may not seek the return of any assets.

The facts alleged in the Complaint will be taken as true, without further proof, in any subsequent civil litigation by or on behalf of the Commission.

The Upside LLC’s consented monetary judgment is $140,983.

Of which the FTC will unfortunately only recover around $1000 of from a Pacific Mercantile Bank account.

Upon the transfer listed … above, the remainder of the judgment is suspended.

The Commission’s agreement to the suspension of part of the judgment is expressly premised upon the truthfulness, accuracy, and completeness of Settling Defendant’s sworn financial statements and related documents (collectively, “financial representations”) submitted to the Commission, namely:

1. the Financial Statement of Settling Defendant signed by Gerard Joseph on February 27, 2018, including the attachments;

2. the declaration signed by Gerard Joseph on February 15, 2018;

3. the additional documentation submitted by email from Settling Defendant’s counsel David Michail to Commission counsel Laura Basford dated February 9, 2018, attaching bank statements and correspondence.

If any the information relied on is realized to be incorrect or incomplete, the full $140,983 judgment will be payable.

All in all as a defendant The Upside LLC isn’t of great significance. It was an entity Mary Dee used to dupe processors into providing financial services to Digital Altitude.

Nonetheless, the agreement orders The Upside LLC to

fully cooperate with representatives of the Commission in this case and in any investigation related to or associated with the transactions or the occurrences that are the subject of the Complaint.

That will likely speed things along with respect to evidence gathering, in the unlikely event Michael Force and Mary Dee refuse to settle.

The Joint Application was filed on June 29th and now awaits judicial approval.


Update 13th July 2018 – On July 5th the FTC’s proposed settlement with The Upside LLC was approved.