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Author Topic: Warning about a new software company scamming people  (Read 7573 times)

Veign

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Warning about a new software company scamming people
« on: May 25, 2007, 06:48:37 PM »
Just wanted to let everyone know about a new company that is preying on novice computer users to get them to buy a one year membership to download free software.  This company has 27+ domains and is relying on Google Ads and I'm sure other sponsored ad sources to get there pages above developers pages.  I was tipped off when doing a search for Irfanview and with a little research I found a lot of information about the company.

Read about them:
http://www.veign.com...-on-novice-with.html

Digg the Story to spread the word:
http://digg.com/soft...f_with_free_software

This kinda of stuff bothers me so much as it makes people distrust the internet and small honest companies.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2007, 07:23:03 PM »
Dugg (is that a real term or should it be Digged?) and commented ...

Everyone should report this scam to Irfanview, Adobe etc. and Google !!

(or alternatively install AdMuncher !! The sponsored ads don't appear then ;))

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2007, 07:46:54 PM »
I contacted Irfanview and waiting to see if he returns my email.

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2007, 07:52:16 PM »
By-the-by I have never found a good way to report companies like this to Google and Yahoo.  I searched when I was writing about ThinkAll as they were doing something similar.

mouser

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2007, 07:52:23 PM »
That is absolutely outrageous.  :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad:

Cpilot

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2007, 08:17:56 PM »
Also notice there is nothing on the front page about a "membership" fee that I can find. The scam starts when you click for the download, it then asks for name and email addy, then upon continuing it makes the "subscription" pitch.
Another reason that buried pricing is suspicious.

app103

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Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2007, 08:49:23 PM »
Report a Spam Result to Google

I had found that but not sure it classifies as Spam as that tool is for spamming the Google Index and not scamming websites through the Adwords campaign.  Might be worth a try though.

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2007, 08:51:32 PM »
Also notice there is nothing on the front page about a "membership" fee that I can find. The scam starts when you click for the download, it then asks for name and email addy, then upon continuing it makes the "subscription" pitch.
Another reason that buried pricing is suspicious.

Plus the sites are professionally design which I'm sure instills confidence in visitors of the website.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2007, 05:24:56 AM »
Is this the place to try?

https://www.google.c...swer.py?answer=18386

Here is the report I sent if others want to use it:

I used
http://www.irfanview-stop.com
as an example of a bad url and then entered the following description:

Quote
Not sure if this is the place to report this scamming abuse but this URL (along with many others by the same people) are using sponsored links in google searches to get the gullible to pay a subscription to download free software in direct contradiction of licensing of the software vendors.

There is an excellent article which details the scam and lists a lot of sites being used in this way.

To read the full details of how the scam is using Google to promote itself see the article at: http://tinyurl.com/36c9bp

If I have reported this to the wrong department could you please tell me who I should report this to.

Thanks

The TinyUrl link pointed to Veign's Blog.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2007, 05:34:25 AM by Carol Haynes »

Carol Haynes

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #10 on: May 26, 2007, 05:40:49 AM »
Here is a related article (not to these sites but to google's attitude):

http://news.com.com/...-7349_3-6180022.html

and here is Googles page on Google Security and Product Safety

with a page of contact links for Security Issues

« Last Edit: May 26, 2007, 05:46:44 AM by Carol Haynes »

Carol Haynes

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2007, 05:56:59 AM »
Ironic twist - have a look at this image:

SC.gifWarning about a new software company scamming people

The joke is that DVDShrink is ILLEGAL to download in the UK (you can be prosecuted just for having a copy even if you don't use it) and ceased development and distribution in 2004 !!!

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2007, 10:57:42 AM »
Is this the place to try?

https://www.google.c...swer.py?answer=18386

Nice find and I submitted a report also.  I am going to let this post sit on my Blog until after the weekend after which I will post the articles and information you found.

Thanx for the investigation and great finds.

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2007, 02:56:11 PM »
Further information

- I think this is the main website: http://interactivebrands.com/
Reason I believe is all of the tracking, stats, and cookies are done through that domain.

Since they are using tracking code in their websites from: http://interactivebr...cripts/trackpidv3.js

Looking inside of that JavaScript file you can see the cookies that are being set.

- If you get to the last step in the signup they are requiring your credit card security code.  Providing that gives them complete and full access to your credit card.

- They, like most scammers, have done this before and possibly under the domain name of MyMp3Live.com.  Read about the discussion.  Both companies add on software like My XP Tools for a fee.  Plus a Whois on the domain shows the same DNS information as the sites I blogged about.  A bit more information is revealed with this domain so I may be able to track more stuff from it.  I see the server housing this domain has 34 other domains and the few I tested were in a weird shutdown but kinda active state.

I think I may be able to track things to a Canadian Marketing company but I can't confirm it at this time so I don't want to post it.

I have a feeling this is the tip of a huge iceberg...

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2007, 02:57:51 PM »
This has been reported to Google and they have sent me an email (from an actual person) that states they will be looking into it but will not be able to let me know the outcome.  Hopefully, shortly, their ads will no longer appear on Google.

Still think we need to increase the exposure by Digging it.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2007, 05:51:29 PM »
This has been reported to Google and they have sent me an email (from an actual person) that states they will be looking into it but will not be able to let me know the outcome.  Hopefully, shortly, their ads will no longer appear on Google.

Still think we need to increase the exposure by Digging it.

Ditto - I got a reply saying pretty much the same. Basically privacy doesn't allow Google to disclose anything about their investigation ... makes you laugh though why should scum get privacy when they are ripping off gullible people ... personally I think Google should provide an equal amount of publicity for the outcome of the investigation with names, photos and credit card details!

Veign

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2007, 06:00:40 PM »
Agreed, Carol.  I think I have a list of over 50 domains run by this company and its sickening.

I will be making another blog post shortly exposing an additional 25+ domains.

Deozaan

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2007, 11:59:33 AM »
I was just wondering something else:

On a lot of scam sites they usually have images showing the logos of certain "securities" to validate themselves, but the images don't link to the real sites. So I went to the irfanview (scam) site and looked around for those logos. Well, I noticed on the page where it was asking me for money (an interactivebrands domain) that they had VeriSign to verify that sending them all your money was safe. I clicked on the image and it told me information about the site, then had a link to "report VeriSign abuse."

I reported them to VeriSign saying they were selling free software. I suggest anyone else who hates scumbags like this do the same thing. Complaints in large numbers usually leads to action. Maybe we can take away their VeriSign, so they'll need a new way to get money from innocent victims.

« Last Edit: June 19, 2007, 12:03:11 PM by Deozaan »

J-Mac

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Re: Warning about a new software company scamming people
« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2007, 02:23:06 AM »
BTW, if you use the SiteAdvisor extension in Firefox, or the add-on in IE, here's what you see:  SiteAdvisor Site Review for interactivebrands.com

Jim