If you have a website or blog you have probably been hit up by “professionals” who are interested in “helping you” in a variety of ways. Sadly, many of these so-called pros are actually out to scam you. They may be after your money or they may be looking to infect your computer or your website with malware.
I am not an IT expert, I know enough about my computer and coding to get the job done–most of the time. I do have a good sense when something feels squirrelly. One of my sites was hacked once and I can tell you from personal experience that it was a royal PIA to get it cleaned up. Frankly, I don’t understand how people get their jollies this way–that site was not making any money, so it certainly wasn’t to make financial gain!
I digress…as I so often do 😉
The latest came through my contact form. The good news is that I can safely read the messages from my contact form. The other good news is that I was smart enough, awake enough, alert to the possibility enough (you choose the descriptor you think is right) to NOT click on the link.
Whenever I have a question about if something is legitimate I do a simple Google search. And guess what I found this time? Yep, lots of people are reporting this scam.
Here is the content of the message I got (please do not go to the URL listed–I have definitely NOT activated the link, but want you to be able to see the full scam)
Subject: Contact Form Results
From: Josephine Bergson <firstname.lastname@example.org
Josephine Bergson wrote:
My name is Josephine Bergson representing the advertising department of the LLT
Consulting company. We are interested to place ads (banners), of your choice, on
Design and sizes can be seen on our website at www.lltconsulting.net/id_fvo24fca/
Depending on the banner size you choose we can pay up to $950.00/month.
If you are interested to become an advertising partner please let me hear from you.
Sounds great, doesn’t it? Too good to be true? That’s because it is!
This might be a great deal, but one of the flags is the dollar amount the are “offering”…but you don’t have to just take my word for it.
Read what a couple IT/high tech guys have to say about this scam (this links ARE active and click away!)
Michael Sheehan AKA HighTechDad: http://www.hightechdad.com/2015/01/22/blogger-warning-llt-consulting-banner-ad-scam/
and Len at Telapost: http://www.telapost.com/bloggers-scam/
Both these guys give good hints on how to determine if what you are being offered is spam. I love this part, do a simple “who is” search and “if the domain is new, registered to a funny name, in a foreign country, renewed recently, and does not belong to a legitimate sounding company you can be sure that the email has ill intentions.” (Thanks Len for that quote).
Also, be realistic, not greedy. If your site doesn’t get significant traffic (yet) then you probably won’t be getting these kinds of offers. If the money seems to good to be true, it probably is.
Clicking on links can load your computer with a malware or trojan. Len stated that he believes this single scam has affected hundreds of machines or more already. If you are one of the unfortunates who did click the link, check these guys out for suggestions on how to clean your machine.
To your successful online business–and pooh on scammers!