While clicking on a new web page, a pop-up showed up. Thinking it was a NetFlix ad, I was surprised to see it was actually a web page with what appeared to be a local article titled, “Ohio stay at home mom makes $6875/Month working from home.” While my common sense muttered, “Yeah, right,” I was perplexed by how much it looked like an actual news article from apparently, “Daily News 7–24 Hour Local News for Ohio.” From the tabs above, it appeared I was on the finance section. This web page even had a “As seen on icons of AOL, CNN, and MSNBC.” At this point, I had to wonder if I had clicked on a news article by accident.
The article claims that a new product is being released as a trial to the first 20,000 people who sign up. And that is filling up fast. It’s a new system called “Home Income System” that allows you to work from home and make an huge income. All you have to do is purchase a Home Income System Kit for $2.97 (for shipping purposes and to wheedle out those who are not serious of course) and your kit will lead you through the process of creating online posts and business sales as you turn into your own entrepreneur. It’s easy, anyone with internet access can apply. You will only need to commit 1-2 days a week to it and you will be making upwards of $300 a day soon. Seems to good to be true right? I looked at the comments to find people chatting about how wonderful this opportunity is and it comes at the right time for most of them after being laid off recently in a struggling economy.
Obviously, if this was an actual news article, other news sources would be reporting on this amazing opportunity. I pasted the title of the article into the Yahoo search engine and immediately an article titled, “Don’t Fall for the Google Jobs Scam” glared at me. This article quickly reported that a new internet scam takes blogs and makes them look like real news article web pages. The pitch is to get readers to buy some form of a Money Making Kit for only $3. After that point, you may never actually get the “kit” in the mail. But that is the least of your worries. Before you know it, your credit card has been charged $129 monthly fee for your “membership”. Then, if you do not get a hold of someone (if that’s even possible) to cancel your membership in 3 days, you will be charged again a $129 one time fee. The charges do not stop there. By applying to for this home business kit, you were also connected to an Online Learning Center 30 day trial that will cost $39 a month until cancelled.
What about my “local article”? The ads can read my IP address and connect me to an ad that is advertising in the same state or city. Isn’t that clever? I went back to the “news article” and attempted to click on another news related tab it offered. Of course, the second I clicked on the “Home” or “News” tab, I was “redirected” not to this “news website” but to a big, more easily spotted ad.
This scam not only preys on those who are in a desperate need of a “unique way to make more money” but those who are scam smart by painting an incredibly “real news article” page. It’s times like this, people have to be extra vigilant in order to not be preyed on by scammers.