Category: Website Scam

The Visa Swindle

There are some countries you can visit without needing a visa e.g. if you’re a European Union citizen traveling within the European Union. But farther afield it is common to need a visa, which can cost anything from a few pounds to around 200 pounds.

The normal way to get such a visa is to look for the nation’s official website that provides the visa you want. You can start with the UK government website listing visa requirements for various countries.

However, many scammers advertise the provision of visas but give nothing in return for your payment and there are many scammers who do provide visas but try to deceive people into believing that their faked site is the nation’s official site when it isn’t.

They do this so they can provide the visa but charge an unnecessarily expensive amount for it.

Some travel companies and travel agents also cheat in this way – directing people who want visas to a website that overcharges and pays commission back to the travel company.

e.g. A visa to visit Australia is free of charge to UK citizens, but Travel Visa charge between £21.50 and £40 for the visa.

If you want a visa then do make sure you use the official website and not a scam operator.

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FirstGiving Dot Com

Fightback Ninja received a standard 419 scam email – a woman claiming to by dying of cancer and her husband left her millions of dollars and she wants me to distribute half of the money to charities and keep the rest.

All lies of course, but the interesting difference from most of these scam emails is at the bottom was a link to a donations web site.

The site is firstgiving.com and the scammer looks to have a donations page setup.

This is strange, but it’s not that simple and she is a scammer.

The link is to firstgiving.com but is invalid and checking firstgiving.com shows a very odd situation.

The scammer claims to have a fundraising page on firstgiving.com but the only fundraiser page appears to be for a centre for human rights in California and the page was created in 2011 but has raised $0.

Not so good. Checking for reviews of firstgiving.com shows real problems.  More than 7.5% fee for donations and a $20 fee per cheque sounds excessive.

Firstgiving seems to be a name used by Panorama fundraising and is a software service to enable people to fundraise.

Do they know scammers use their name?

Who knows, but better to avoid these strange people.

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DVLA Website Scammer

It is a common scam that people setup websites to look just like official websites where people go to do official business such as getting a new driving licence, updating their passport, paying a car parking bill or paying for entry to a town centre congestion zone etc.

You might think these people are regular criminals or teen age computer hackers, but they can turn out to be apparently respectable people.

Simon Button set up a website offering DVLA Licence Applications.  He charged people £91.60 to fill in the application and his site would then send the form to the DVLA.  The customers did get their licence application BUT this is a nasty trick to play on people as the real cost at the DVLA website is only £34.

Button paid for Google adverts so that his website came higher on searches (e,g, for ‘replacement driving licence’) than the official DVLA website.

When you search for official services on Google or other search engines you expect the official site to come top of the list and most people will notice if it doesn’t but for many in a hurry it’s a case of clicking without reading too carefully and they can end up paying a lot more than necessary – to line the pockets of greedy scammers such as Simon Button.

Google did remove the adverts for Button’s website when notified, as it breached their rules on selling products or services that are available from the Government at a lower price without a clear added value.

Simon Button is a solicitor, specialising in commercial property, as well as director of the International Colleagues School of English, a school in Norwich.

His website does carry a disclaimer saying it is not affiliated to the DVLA, but it’s easy to miss that or misunderstand it.

Copycat sites such as Simon Button’s pop up all the time, so be careful if you want to make an official transaction – do not be ripped off .

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Stupidest Spam of the Week Teeth Whitening

Whitening your teeth seems to be a popular pastime with many people paying their dentist or expert practitioner to get progressively whiter and whiter teeth.

But many who cannot afford that choice go for off the shelf methods or even untested Internet methods.

This latest scam jumps on the bandwagon with “Getting a perfect smile is easier than ever before”.

It’s trying to sell a Whitening At Home System All in One Kit that gives you instant LED teeth.

Maybe the scammer is offering to remove the customers teeth and replace them with small LEDs, or maybe not.

The whole thing is just a scam, as is obvious from the confusing array of contradictory facts quoted in the messages.

It claims the method is “instant” then claims it takes only “9 minutes”.

It says no prescription is required then says it is 5 times stronger than any other whitening products on the market, many of which do need prescriptions.

It claims to be an unknown method but then says lots of celebrities are using it.

All rubbish. Teeth whitening is basically a process of using strong chemicals to strip off the outside layer of your teeth. The more that is stripped then the whiter the teeth but also the weaker they are.

If you want whiter teeth – see a professional. Don’t risk your teeth.

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Crypto Scammers

Cryptomusu is a web site offering investments in crypto currencies i.e. digital currencies such as Bitcoin.

Their way of working appears to be to be friendly and supportive of new clients then push them to invest heavily and if necessary borrow money to invest.

Typically, the investment grows initially then suddenly it goes wrong and all of the money is lost. Cryptomusu don’t care and don’t help and simply recommend the customer borrows more money to try to win back their losses.

The following is one of many bad reviews on sites such as Trustpilot.

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES get sucked into this SCAM !!!
You will lose EVERYTHING. You will be encouraged to keep investing more money by any means they can, you will be promised some of your money will only be needed for a short duration of time (in days) and then returned but it NEVER happens.
You are not given all the information you need at all, eg you will need to close all your trades to be able to draw out money. You will not be told about SWAP, which swallows up most of your balance. You will have your account manager changed 2 or 3 times and when they finally realise you are not going to invest any further funds, you will be encouraged to open more trades and you will lose everything left in your balance. This company are aggressive and bullies, out to drain everything out of you that they can, whether that’s your savings or by using up your credit limits on your credit cards or BOTH !! Be warned, i wish i had checked them out more thoroughly first and read the BAD reviews on this site in my experience they are mostly TRUE !!!!

The company is registered in the Caribbean so effectively non regulated in the UK and although the FCA have been warning people against Cryptomusu, it is impossible to stop.

Cryptomusu is also associated with unitedmarkets4you.com, upperbrookstreet.com, cryptexmarkets.com and blockchainexchange.com.

Stay clear of these people and only use a registered broker with FCA registration to safeguard your investment.

If you have any experiences with crypto currency scams, do let me know, by email.

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Stupidest Spam of the Week Website Links

Everyone with a website or blog wants lots of people to see it. There are many ways to achieve this but helping people to find it on search engines is the most popular method for most people.

One of the ways to improve the likelihood of a website coming high in Google search or other online search engines is to create lots of backlinks i.e. links from other people’s website to that one.

These should be created properly i.e. by getting links in sites related to yours and where the link is relevant and meaningful e.g. a link to Brooklands Radio from a retailer who plays Brooklands Radio in their premises or from an artist featured on Brooklands Radio or from a local business that advertises on Brooklands Radio.

However, lots of unscrupulous people try to bypass this slow process by buying links from link sellers. They charge typically $20 – $50 for hundreds of links to be created.

These are usually very poor links in that they are from sites with no relevance to your web site and probably stuffed with hundreds or thousands of such meaningless links. Google and other search engines recognise this and ignore any links from those sites.

This latest email says “We provide guest post and link placement on our fitness and health site for $95 per link”. 

That’s extremely expensive compared to other link providers.

No-one in their right mind would actually pay this, especially as the email is from a Gmail account which means there is no business and no business website, just a dumb scammer.

The last line in the email says “The price is negotiable.” which reeks of desperation.

Too bad, loser.

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