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INSTANT EVOLUTION

Evolve FASTER, easier, without years of study. A new way to QUICKLY experience The Infinite One-ness. Discover a "mental" body, MYSTIC powers, ECSTASY. No meditation, no denials, no positive thinking. Reveals world's GREATEST living teacher. Send for free information. INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED THINKING [more inside]
posted by ardgedee on Jul 9, 2014 - 20 comments

Wrist Mounted Gadgets Ahoy!

Drop Kicker is a blog that investigates products on Kickstarter and Indiegogo that look scientifically implausible, outright impossible, or completely scammy
posted by The Whelk on Dec 6, 2013 - 15 comments

An army of hipster-friendly bacon ninjas

Why Did 9,000 Porny Spambots Descend on This San Diego High Schooler? A voyage into the strange underworld of spambots, shady marketing, and non-human intelligence.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Nov 25, 2013 - 26 comments

The Glam Scammer

"In cities across the country, Michael Manos has thrown fantastic parties with faux celebrities and top-shelf tequila sponsors. He ingratiates himself in gay communities, fakes a European accent, and often has claimed to be the disavowed gay son of a Greek millionaire, though he actually grew up middle-class in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. Along the way, he’s taken thousands of dollars from socialites and the well-heeled, who were easily blinded by his glitter and glamour. He duped actress Jane Fonda. He sold tickets to a “chic” fundraiser in honor of Sen. John McCain, who later said he’d never heard of him. Manos is a bank robber, a one-time male escort on Capitol Hill, and the target of more than one cross-country manhunt. He is also a convicted kidnapper who helped keep a man locked in the trunk of a car for four days. For that, he spent more than a decade in a New York prison. And now he’s behind bars again, this time in Louisiana."
posted by porn in the woods on Oct 25, 2013 - 25 comments

There will always be scammers

Forbes provides a list of 5 major scams that have popped out of the woodwork with the beginning of deployment of the Affordable Care Act (AKA Obamacare). Be on the lookout! [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle on Oct 3, 2013 - 28 comments

ONE WEIRD TRICK TO GET METAFILTER FAVORITES

Matthowie hates him! Mefite's shocking discovery of how to get 100 favorites in 10 minutes. Up your favorite ratio in 10 days with one weird trick, take your mefi performance to the next level. Click here [more inside]
posted by Carillon on Aug 1, 2013 - 104 comments

Exploiting Fear

How Two Scammers Built an Empire Hawking Sketchy Software
posted by vidur on Oct 4, 2011 - 23 comments

Bruce Wagner and the Bitcoin Scam

Has Bruce Wagner pulled off a massive scam on the bitcoin community? Bruce Wagner was for a time the public face of the new electronic currency. He was the go-to guy for journalists looking for insight into bitcoin. He even began running his own online TV network which attracted multiple sponsors. Now, things have begun to unravel for Wagner. MyBitcoin was a bitcoin bank Wagner had heavily promoted on his shows. One day, it vanished from the Internet. When it returned, MyBitcoin claimed to have been hacked and that it was only able to refund 49% of deposits. Wagner's early promotion and history of involvement in equity stripping mortgage scams has led to suspicion that he is somehow involved in MyBitcoin, despite claiming to be one of the biggest victims. [more inside]
posted by furiousxgeorge on Sep 1, 2011 - 448 comments

"Everyone has pain. It's your job to find it."

Start a home business, get rich quick, win financial freedom! If you watch late-night TV, you've heard it all before. But what's the story behind these slick pitchmen and their dubious schemes? Enter The Salty Droid, your ornery metal guide to the corrupt underworld of scam-marketing scum. This charmingly acerbic bot (owned and operated by mild-mannered Chicago dog-lover Jason Michael Jones [inter-view, long talk + transcript]) is a valiant crusader against the vile con-men who bankrupt the elderly and the desperate with beautiful lies. Exposed so far: A shadowy "Syndicate" of frauduct-pushing personality cults polluting the media with blogspam and woo-woo talking points. Boiler rooms in the Utah desert where telemarketers farm credit from easy targets with cunning, probing scripts [PDF]. Powerful politicians bought wholesale. Believers left to die in fraudulent new-age vision quests. It's a soul-crushing beat, enough to make one feel like a regular catcher-bot in the digital rye. But somebody's got to do it -- preferably someone with plasma nunchucks and titanium skin.
posted by Rhaomi on Aug 31, 2011 - 47 comments

Problem, Customer?

The Better Business Bureau (and some familiar faces) present the Top Online Scams of 2010.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Aug 25, 2011 - 38 comments

760-705-8888

In August, Google added a feature to Gmail that lets you make phone calls — for free, if you live in the US or Canada and you're calling someone in the US or Canada. When you make a call, your number shows up as 760-705-8888. Judging by the nine pages of complaints found here, the service is often being used to prank, harass and scam people. [more inside]
posted by defenestration on Oct 2, 2010 - 60 comments

Vere You Vant To Go?

It's the bane of travelers everywhere, the Taxi scam.
posted by Xurando on Jan 5, 2010 - 111 comments

Nothing to declare except that, um, $135 billion

Two Japanese men have been detained by Italian authorities after they were caught with $134.5 billion in US bonds and securities in a false-bottomed bag on a train heading for the Swiss border. [more inside]
posted by grounded on Jun 12, 2009 - 99 comments

Today a sewing machine - tomorrow a dirty bomb

Dig out your old Singer sewing machines from the attic and sell them to somebody in Saudi Arabia for a fortune on account of the red mercury they contain. Red mercury allows nuclear bombs to be constructed without the need for plutonium [previously]. Red mercury came originally from Russia. Or from the Nazis. Red mercury was invented to lure terrorists in sting operations. It is a medicine for treating impotency. Red mercury will bring long life. It is cinnabar. It is mercury iodide. It is Lithium 6. It is a Bose Einstein Condensate. It is a ballotechnic mercury compound. It is a codeword. It's a game. It costs $300,000 per kilo.
posted by rongorongo on Apr 15, 2009 - 46 comments

Nearer to thee....

What would Jesus fly? Senator Charles Grassley investigates TV evangelists. One of whom claims his financial records belong to God. Further Investigation of TV evangelists some of whom are leaving on a jet plane. All thanks to the Prosperity Doctrine
posted by adamvasco on Jul 7, 2008 - 89 comments

International award of the century

The American Biographical Institute and the International Biographical Centre have been offering honours for sale for years now. Recipients are offered the chance to purchase space in published "Who's Who" type directories and they can also purchase awards and honours such as "Most admired man of the decade" or "Eisteinian Chair of Science." Academics seem mostly to fall for the allure of prestige (including David Suzuki) but so do some politicians, including Kamala Persad-Bissessar (MP, Trinidad and Tobago), Tõnis Kint (Acting President, Estonia), Adrian Severin (Member of the European Parliament), Jona Baravilala Senilagakali (Minister of Health, Fiji), Benazir Bhutto (President, Pakistan) and Gambian President His Excellency Alhagi Dr. Yahya A.J.J. Jammeh.
posted by salishsea on Jul 10, 2007 - 9 comments

Congratulations!

Clive James on Scams and Hoaxes. "If the flim-flam man is sensible enough to offer you a return of only twice as much, the scam might even work. I was once defrauded of a heartbreakingly-large sum by a fellow writer who was smart enough to offer no return at all. True to her word, she didn't return my money either."
posted by Blue Stone on Apr 9, 2007 - 18 comments

Thank God I'm Stupid!

"Thank God I Was Raped!" Thank God for creepily masochistic self-help concepts! Thank God for network marketing publishing stunts that prey on the deranged! Thank God I was scammed out of real money by an advocate of rape therapy! But most of all, thank God there's an affiliate program!
posted by MaxVonCretin on Mar 27, 2007 - 77 comments

Subscriptions for Disaster

“We’re selling magazines to earn points in a contest to win a trip abroad,” begins the standard spiel. At any given moment there are roughly 2,500 of these fresh-faced teens travelling across the USA hawking subscriptions for periodicals door to door. Welcome to the violent exploitative world of the Magazine Crews. via
posted by maryh on Feb 22, 2007 - 98 comments

Scams

Scams. There's always someone trying to get what's yours. They take advantage of the misery of others, and if you're labeled a sucker, then you could end up being deluged. Can you tell what is real?
posted by viama on Feb 9, 2005 - 19 comments

Not Affiliated with the LDS Church

Tired of EBay scams? Think EBay is a haven for criminals? Maybe you ought to surf on over to MormonBid.com.
posted by mr_crash_davis on Feb 7, 2005 - 19 comments

Seems legit-- where do I sign?

Ze Frank, nigerian 419 scammer. [Quicktime]
posted by gwint on Sep 29, 2004 - 14 comments

P-P-P-Powerbook

An American Ebay seller realises a European bidder is trying to scam him out of a Powerbook (fake escrow site, hijacked ebay account), so he sends him something far better, a P-P-P-Powerbook! Now, for you non-techies here, a factory model p-p-p-powerbook weights half what it's competitors weigh, comes with an A4 screen, the latest in internet adventure software, zero boot time, a fullsize keyboard (often with Key RedundancyTM) and a state-of-the-art laser bluetooth mouse. This is technology. The seller posts to a forum and amongst the chatter people follow the package via the the Fedex tracking page and some even visit the delivery address (a barbershop/internet cafe) and take photos, video, and a seat for their hair cut. The duty tax on this particular p-p-p-powerbook is around £350 (paid for by the scammer) before he sees the package, and a few days later it's released by Customs as they watch in anticipation. A forum member arrives at the internet cafe, takes a seat and soon the package arrives. The scammer opens the box and there are angry raised voices heard. The barber doesn't understand what's wrong and asks... "Is it broken?"
posted by holloway on May 13, 2004 - 57 comments

A fool and his money are soon scammed out of it

There's a lot of scammin', griftin', and chicanery going on in the world and Snopes has always been there, but they usually take some time to do their investigations. But for the quick hit, they've just launched a new daily scam page carrying just that day's latest scam news from around the country. It's really amazing how many major scams take place every day, and it helps to know how to spot a scam when you hear about it.
posted by mathowie on Apr 10, 2004 - 4 comments

Rip-off Report™ is the next best thing to getting your story on TV or in a newspaper?

Victim of a consumer Rip-off? Victim of bad business practices? Have a deadbeat ex-husband? Want justice? Rip-off Report is a worldwide consumer reporting Website & Publication, by consumers, for consumers, to file & document complaints about Companies or Individuals who ripoff consumers.
posted by Macboy on Feb 25, 2004 - 11 comments

Church of the Holy Cow

Nigerian Email Scam Gone Wrong • Evangelist Ojukwu Damisa contacted a fictitious American pastor--Father Ted Crilley of the "Church of the Holy Cow"-- in search of donations. Though Father Crilley's prank response has become a familiar Something Awful-style troll, it's always funnier when there are pictures involved.
posted by dhoyt on Dec 14, 2003 - 7 comments

Turning the tables on the 419 scammers

"Although this letter will come to you as a surprise..." Fed up with having their inboxes clogged with emails from Nigerian fraudsters promising untold riches, the victims are finally hitting back in what has been described as the Internet's first blood sport.
posted by tranquileye on Nov 21, 2003 - 16 comments

Caution: Fake Blogger.com

Don't be fooled by fake blogger.com. Crackers are after your Blogger password.
posted by hoder on Jul 30, 2003 - 15 comments

Scamming the scammer

Scamming the scammer Somewhere along the line I think we've all wondered what would happen if we answered the Nigerian 419 scam email. Now we don't have to. Someone calling himself 'ebola monkey man' has been taking the scammer's on a email journey to the point that he will only agree to send them money if they send him a silly picture of themselves holding up a sign with their name on... [via b3ta]
posted by feelinglistless on Jul 4, 2003 - 11 comments

Divinely Inspired to Pick Your Name...

Nigerian email scam dudes. Possibly the first visual evidence of the rapscallions behind the scam that just keeps on sucking in new 'investors'.
posted by apocalypse miaow on Jun 14, 2003 - 13 comments

Scam Spam Kills

The Nigerian Scam Email also known as the 419 scam, claims a death. People get scammed all the time, hopefully with less dire consequences. The FTC has a list of the 12 most common scams. Has anybody here been scammed lately (it happens to the best of us and most likely all of us, at one time or another)?
posted by ashbury on Feb 24, 2003 - 17 comments

That's FEXX'ed up!

Looking for the right job? Or a new team member? Not so fast. You might like to read about others' experiences with the company. Shouldn't this site have been shut down already? Where can one complain if the company in question lists a bogus address?
posted by thatweirdguy2 on Feb 17, 2003 - 19 comments

Yellow Bamboo

How would you like to control the entire universe, both what goes within you and what happens with others? As you can imagine when you can knock down attackers from 10 feet away or heal someone dying from something just using your own energy- that is true personal power! Others are skeptical. I think I will hold on to my $19.99. The movies are entertaining, though.
posted by hockeyman on Feb 15, 2003 - 19 comments

E-Bay Scammers and Internet Fraud

A Mac user scorned is a dangerous thing... Gotta hand it to this guy: persistence pays off. After being scammed with $3000 in forged cashier checques in an eBay transaction, this seller took matters into his own hands. How secure do you feel making transaction over eBay and related services? What kinds of internet fraud have you faced or fear? And most interesting of all, to what extent have you gone to correct evils done to you?
posted by tgrundke on Dec 12, 2002 - 51 comments

A new twist on the Nigerian Money Laundering Scam Spam?

A new twist on the Nigerian Money Laundering Scam Spam? Everybody has a little cash-flow problem now and then...
posted by TCMITS on Aug 23, 2002 - 9 comments

Would you like to be part of my pyramid?

We all know someone who has tried to sell us a "multi level marketing" product. Usana and Amway are 2 popular MLM companies. Can you really make money with these pyramid schemes? There are sites that talk about avoiding scams and others that show support for those who have been burnt, but they sometimes turn around and support mlm and network marketing.

Does anyone know these people? What kind of cars do they drive? What kind of person gets into network marketing and who are these "successful independant distributers"? 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
posted by tomplus2 on Aug 14, 2002 - 44 comments

"The fraud, the huckster, the salesman are not new phenomena in America; what is new is that they now so strongly control every estate of our society." For the last few days, I've been reading the Progressive Review's Undernews, a sort of progressive news blog-by-e-mail -- and frankly, it's amazing. One of today's articles blew my mind: it's a spot-on encapsulation of What's Wrong with America Today. (Scroll down to "Derivative America and the Enron Generation." This link is to the "Latest Issue" page. Tomorrow I think it will be archived here.) Seriously, read it now. It's worth it.
posted by tweebiscuit on Feb 26, 2002 - 36 comments

Invest now!

Invest now! The SEC has created a fake website to try and educate the naive. I can't decide if this is a good idea, or if someone has too much time on their hands and is wasting my tax dollars.
posted by FreezBoy on Jan 30, 2002 - 8 comments

Did you know about the "African-American Slavery Reparations" tax credit? (Neither did I.)
posted by Steven Den Beste on Jan 24, 2002 - 37 comments

Is it buyer beware or Ebay's responsability

Is it buyer beware or Ebay's responsability when 75 winners of Playstation 2 systems receive nothing but a picture of the unit that cost them $300.00
posted by Eric Lloyd NYC on Dec 30, 2001 - 42 comments

It's probably old news to most of you that Skybiz (which I am deliberately not linking) recently came under FTC scrutiny for being a pyramid scheme. What I'm wondering is: why is the original news article about it no longer on CNET News, and why can't I seem to find any more news about this scam? (Here's the cached Google copy of the news item.)

Coverup? Or just an "expired" article? (While we're here, anyone with firsthand feedback on Skybiz?)
posted by brownpau on Aug 1, 2001 - 1 comment


Answer Yes or No and don't lie. Do you blame the society?

Answer Yes or No and don't lie. Do you blame the society? If you answer yes to this and 39 other questions (Do you believe in bad eye?), you may qualify to donate $40 to $39,000 to Saeid Yomtobian and "your life will turn into a positive mode immediately because of your decision to bond with the universe." The man who brings you www.iwantjesus.com is looking for a little help in his mission to "promote the message of peace www.iwantjesus.com Through out the world." You can also find the site via some of its alternate urls, including www.fucksf.com, www.iwanttokillyou.com, www.sexbyanimals.com, and many more. Don't miss this crazy story about his meeting with the Dalai Lama from the man who registered www.killthepresident.com for a beastiality site. Would the man who pledged to me that he would "continue to fight until all the injustices and corruptions come to stop" really be responsible for an strangely brilliant ad banner scam? Maybe, maybe not. At least his weird sex education school is only $39.99 a month! Indeed, the internet life of Saeid Yomtobian is a complicated and mysterious one.
posted by ztt on Jun 27, 2001 - 10 comments

Columbia's movies suck so bad they had to make up their own critic!

Columbia's movies suck so bad they had to make up their own critic! Newsweek has discovered that a "gushy" critic who has been quoted in Columbia's movie ads for almost a year is an invention of their advertising department.
posted by BGM on Jun 2, 2001 - 41 comments

Never buy anything through the net

Never buy anything through the net unless you're certain you know what you're getting.
posted by Steven Den Beste on Jul 29, 2000 - 2 comments

Be afraid. Be very afraid. Amway is bringing their scams to the web. When your gullible relatives get online, expect to be bombarded with 'opportunity emails.' Fortunately, there's plenty of people getting the truth out about them.
posted by mathowie on Aug 26, 1999 - 0 comments

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