Different face on Internet scam

A few months ago I described  how a company called Profit System Online (PSO) was using misleading ads in the Lawrence Journal World’s online edition that appeared as legitimate news reports.

The fake news reports touted the virtues of signing-up for PSO’s so-called “Internet Income System.”  The misleading ads claim it made one local mom $6,795 a month while working 10-13 hours a week from home.

Now it appears a company that markets a Home Income Profit Kit is using a similar  advertisement that masquerades as a report for the financial and business news cable network CNBC.  The phony CNBC report is about a non-existent Lincoln, Nebraska mom who makes $6,487 a month working from her home.  She did it, according to the report, by only working  15-18 hours a week.

This misleading advertisement masquerades as a CNBC report about a Lincoln, Nebraska mom who earns thousands of dollars a month working from home.

I contacted CNBC to get its response to the company that carries the phony CNBC report.  Here is a CNBC spokesperson’s  response:

“This company and its website have no affiliation with CNBC, and we are currently looking into this matter.”

The website didn’t  say it was an advertisement.  It gave readers the impression that it was an investigative report produced by CNBC journalists.

Here is what the Reviewopedia website says about the Home Income Profit System:

“The Home Income Profit System (recently renamed The Home Income Wealth System) is a now notorious internet scheme that claims to help you make money from home. Their make money kit is often promoted through the use of fake newspaper articles and other unscrupulous means.”

When I checked today, the fake CNBC website and story had been “suspended,”  but a look alike ad is still alive on this Google link:

CNBC NEWS – Finance: Work at home mom makes $6487 a month from home

and here are a few other fake links:

There are dozens of other ads like these that continue to float around the Internet.

So, beware.

In case you’re curious about whether these “stay at home income” claims work you should read the small print at the bottom of the PSO corporate website:

*INCOME CLAIM WARNING: Testimonials are not typical of most results. Photographs or images are a depiction of individuals and payment methods. These income examples are representative of some of the most successful participants in the program. Some individuals purchasing the program may make little or NO MONEY AT ALL. These claims are not a guarantee of your income, nor are they typical of average participants. Individual results will vary greatly and in accordance to your input, determination, hard work, and ability to follow directions. No person or company can guarantee profits or freedom from loss. Any and all use of this website certifies you are agreeing to our Earnings and Income Disclaimers.

Or read what Reviewopedia has to say about the Home Income Profit Kit:

“The reason why there’re so many complaints against these types of kits is because the companies running them use very shady billing practices.  They offer the program as a Free Trial, charging you only several dollars for S&H, but as soon as they get your credit card details they quickly hit you with a much larger charge.

Take a look at their terms and conditions:

When you submit your order, you agree to pay the shipping and handling fee of $2.97 for your Road Map to Success; please allow up to two weeks for delivery.   After your 3-day trial period, you will be charged a ONE TIME fee of $139.95 for the product that will not be billed again for access to all of the features above. Thereafter, a $4.95 fee will serve as a monthly website hosting and maintenance fee until canceled.

They say that it can take up to two weeks to receive your materials, yet they charge you after just 3 days!  So basically there’s no chance of you having enough time to review the materials and decide if it’s worth the $139.95 + $4.95 a month. Some people have even reported being charged the $139.95 fee the same day as their order.

The other problem with this type of billing is that many people don’t even read the terms and only find out about the true costs when it’s already too late. In addition, lots of people have reported difficulties reaching customer support in order to cancel the trial or get a refund.”

Advertisements

About Bernard McCoy

My views are my own and not a reflection of my employer. I'm an associate professor of Journalism at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I've also been a working journalist for the past 29 years. I have covered news stories in war zones, reported on human and natural disasters, presidential conventions, a presidential inauguration and the September 11th, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center in New York City. My career experiences include work as an award-winning documentary producer, television news reporter, photographer, producer, and anchor. I worked at WIBW-TV, Topeka, KS., KCTV, Kansas City, MO, WKBD-TV, Detroit, MI., WILX-TV, Lansing, MI. and WBNS-TV, Columbus, OH. I have also worked as a contributing reporter for The Columbus Dispatch, Associated Press, CBS, CNN, the Ohio News Network and lecture at the Kosovo Institute of Journalism and Communications. I have a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in telecommunications management from Michigan State University.
This entry was posted in advertising, deceptive ad, deceptive ads, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Different face on Internet scam

  1. David Teufert says:

    This website “www.cnbc7.com” is stealing/using private party’s email addresses to send their bogus “work at home” ads.

  2. Linda King says:

    HOW DO I GET RID OF THESE? THE WEBSITE IS USING MY NAME AND SENDING EVERYONE I KNOW THEIR “WORK AT HOME” ADDS………..HELP!!

  3. Victoria says:

    What I want to know is how this virus was able to use my Gmail account to actually send out these emails. I have several Gmail (and Hotmail) accounts, only ONE of them (my secondary Gmail account) was compromised. If the virus is on my local machine why would it not seize other email accounts? I ran a scan of my machine and no viruses were found.

  4. Jan says:

    My husband received this link last week from a client advocating the ease of making money ($500-$600/mo), could have been a similar situation to Linda King’s comment above. Being curious I clicked on the link and was able to view information including open jobs available in my zip code. I exited the web when credit card payment was requested for a health/fitness program. It’s still an active site.

  5. Ben says:

    Real Scammers is what the are… This Emily Stewart seems to live everywhere and the same twitter feeds appear wherever she goes.

  6. vikas says:

    Nice article on such online frauds and scams –

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s