Welcome to Internet Scam Alerts!

We will show you how to avoid internet scams and rip-offs.

During the last 20 years or so, I have seen and been the victim of a few scammy programs and worthless products. I have wasted time and money buying bogus products.

Lock out scamsI learned the warning signs.
Here they are for you.

If they do not accept PayPal for payment, it is a good bet they are not a legitimate program. PayPal is a major online payment processor. PayPal has very strict guidelines related to multi-level and network marketing companies. If there is a hint that a company is a scam, PayPal will not approve payment. Don’t accept any excuses from a company representative as to why they don’t use PayPal. Of course, many merchants use the services of credit card processors and take payment via credit card.

If the price is too good to be true, then be careful. Many scammers lure people into making purchases with extremely low prices for expensive products. High-end electronics are a good example. But the scammers have no intent to deliver the product. Also, scammers frequently sell bogus name brand products. Amazon recently sued several Amazon third-party sellers for selling fake products.

If there are pictures of money, expensive cars and homes (ostentatious display of wealth), it is most likely a scam. The intent of the pictures is to create an aura of success and credibility.

If the sales page offers an endless stream of free bonuses usually with inflated estimates of value, the product being sold is probably worthless. If a product is that good, there is no reason to offer a bunch of bonuses. However, legitimate marketers may make offers as incentives to buy such as Buy One, Get One (BOGO) free or for the cost of shipping.

If the program promotes a get-rich-quick program where no work is involved (they do it for you), run fast and far away as possible. If there is no work involved on your part, why do they need you? They don’t. Just your money.

If there is a extremely low cost of entry, there is a high probability that there are big “upsell” costs lurking behind the initial cost. $7 and $17 appear to be popular price points for these scammy programs or products.

If the sales page is either anonymous or has a “talking head” guru, it is probably a scam. Scammers tend to hide behind anonymity to avoid contact with potential victims. There are some successful business people who personally promote their own products because there is a demand for them. There are also the so-called gurus who are hired to promote someone else’s product. These are the ones to be cautious.

If the product is marketed at a low cost, has a long guarantee period and is marketed through one of the affiliate networks, be careful as the product may be of questionable value. I, personally, have had more problems getting refunds from sellers who use JVZoo to market their products than Commission Junction, ClickBank and some others. Don’t get me wrong, I have had great success with some JVZoo affiliates.

And, finally, the video or PowerPoint Presentation only website may be a scam or promotion for a worthless product. These are the sales pitches “by the number” used by either incompetent marketers or scams. The intent is to create curiosity, interest and desire on part of the viewer to watch until the end to make a purchase. Some of these “presentations” can run 30 minutes before you know what the product is.

Hope this helps and saves you the frustration and cost of being scammed.

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14 Thoughts to “Introduction to Internet Scam Alerts”

  1. Melinda W.

    After six months of daily evening phone calls from IEPAC and a rude psychotic caller named Ryan Caull or Call who gets his thrills by constantly calling, never mentioning the business name. I can’t believe and most likely never will believe this isn’t a real person speaking on the other end. I remember the first time he called and told me “that my husband made an appointment to speak with him.” My husband, I knew would never make an appointment to talk to a political nut job or take a survey let alone a car salesman calling to tell me “my husband had made an appointment to trade in our 2 year old car for a new one.” Both calls were blatant lies. During the first 10 seconds of the calls each day for a few weeks, I was polite in asking “Ryan Call” each of the time to please remove my name from the call list we weren’t interested and we don’t allow surveys over the phone. Haven’t for thirty years. Ryan Call kept up the harassing calls at this time of night between 6-8 pm for over 6 months. I usually heard him say, “Hello, this is Ryan Call can I speak to Gary?” I just started hanging up. When that didn’t work I began playing a phone gag that a teenager I know used on his answering machine by saying multiple times, hello?? hello?? and pretending I couldn’t hear the caller, then hanging up. That got old after the second time doing it. I hate the phone. Ryan Calls calls were aggravating and excelling in numbers I could only attribute to somebody enjoying another’s discomfort. No matter if I swore or called him names Ryan Call is still relentless in his sick goal of harassment because I won’t accept his call. The man has some serious issues of control and mental illness to target an unknown woman on the phone. The last time he called in the evening, he tried to disguise his voice and that was creepy. I never get into a conversation with him ever. I now just say something rude and hang up. He still calls. Only this last Tuesday he called my phone at 2:30 pm. I finally called the numbers on my phone to this company, and pressed the third option that I requested to have my number taken off the call list. Now, whether that will happen or not will remain to be seen. I’m going to leave a whistle by each phone. I’ve had the phone company block the calls, but that only lasted a couple of weeks as the number changes as the other people have said. This dude tries to talk to me and uses bullying to induce a conversation. I don’t understand his thinking in trying to reach me in this way. Why would anybody stay on the phone longer then necessary to blow this guy off?? He’s offensive in his goal to harass me. That is SICK. Believe me when I say, “if you have caller I.D. and see ‘IPEC’ be afraid to answer the call. I don’t believe it will ever stop until the guy gets hit by a car, bus or train and is pronounced “dead at the scene.”

    1. Glen

      That is really unfortunate that someone does that. I suggest contacting law enforcement as well as the Federal Trade Commission Consumer Complaints to report harassing telephone calls.

  2. G

    I received a call from IE today and only know it because it showed up as a missed call on my phone. I’ve received earlier calls from them as well. I have caller ID and nevet answer calls from unknown numbers; if its important and legit they’ll leave a message.
    I also have the Panasonic phone and can and do use it to block a number of phone numbers. I also have a silent period set up where only family and close friends can get through (emergencies after all can happen at anytime).

    1. Glen

      I receive so many spoofed telephone calls that I assume any phone number I don’t recognize is from a scammer or charitable organization wanting money. I have my favorite charities and donate either by mail or going to their website.

  3. Warren

    Great article, Glen. I never thought about the PayPal angle until you pointed it out. The endless supply of bonuses make you wonder about the validity of what you DO get normally. Lastly, the houses and cars are just to make you very dissatisfied with what you do have – and they provide the ticket out. Great job. Thanks.

    1. Glen

      Thank you Warren for reading and commenting. I appreciate the kind words.

  4. Leo

    One cannot be careful enough, I also always try to be vigilant and careful with regards to matters online to prevent myself from falling into a scam trap.

    I also used Paypal as a good indicator for trustworthy sites but i noted that you have gave a lot of good advises towards tell tale signs of scams. Good job! I only wished that the elderly folks are more careful as I understand that most victims of scams are the elderly members.

    1. Glen

      Hi Leo. PayPal has been very aggressive recently closing accounts of dubious make-money-from-home businesses and schemes. It is important to remember not all legitimate businesses use PayPal as they use credit card merchant services to process payments online.

  5. Alan ONeill

    Hi Glen, thank you for these points about scams online. I have become very wary of almost any site nowadays. As you suggest, if they can’t use PayPal then you should not use the site. Your post says you have been scammed before. What experiences have you had?

    I don’t like to restrict internet freedom, but I wonder if there is a way to register with a credible organization and then people could trust. Like the direct selling association and other industry bodies.

    1. Glen

      Hi Alan, thanks for commenting. I have purchased some dubious products in the past. Fortunately, I received refunds for most of them. I also bought a very cheap shirt on eBay. I got what I paid for.

      Years ago, I also joined a start-up MLM company. It was a pre-launch of a new nutritional company. The company kept most of the details secret up until the official launch when they announced all the products and prices. During the 90 days prior I had built a downline of 700 people. I was shocked when they announced the product prices! Plus they wanted $40 a month just for the back office support and replicated websites. It all fell apart because no one was willing to pay that much. The company went out of business shortly afterwards. I recently wrote an article on Multi-Level Marketing that includes a discussion on pricing.

  6. mark

    I really enjoyed reading your post, The Internet is full of scammers and cheaters nowadays, and they are only trying to steal your money, unfortunately I experienced the exact same problem, got scammed by people *looking* Rich, exactly as you said, fancy cars, beautiful house, if it looks to good to be true, then it usually is..

    Again I liked your post, well written and the warning signs are definitely the things to watch out for, thanks mate.


    1. admin

      Thanks, Mark. I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. I understand why marketers use the fancy cars etc. But generally they use them in such a cheesy way. There are some very classy ways to show success. I particularly like Patrick Bet-David’s short video, The Life of an Entrepreneur in 90 Seconds.

  7. Norman

    The internet is filled with so much scams that it is so amazing, people are being scammed ever day out of their hard earn money, you would think by now that persons would have already caught on to these scams and not be so quick to spend their money, the key is to do your home work first. Thanks for the information that you have given that is a big help. All the best to you.

    1. admin

      Thank you so much, Norman. Educating people about the scams is a continuous effort. Seems like every day a friend or acquaintance says their Facebook account was hacked. So sad.

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