Frauds & Scams

Auto Billing Scams

imagesFree Trial Scams are just that.  Scams.  The trade name for them is a Continuity program.  Free trials and cheap products go hand in hand so much so that when we test a product that is a free trial program we can almost predict with 90% accuracy that the quality will be low before we even get the lab tests back.  You should know by now that nothing in life is ever free.  The fact of the matter is that not only are these products not free.  They usually end up costing significantly more than if you just paid for the product outright.  Next time you go to your local barber think about what you would do if when you handed him your credit card he asked you to sign a document that was 10 pages long?  It never ceases to amaze us that when it comes to purchasing online guys will actually overlook it or not even read it.  When you do the transaction and the terms of the sale are that long you are doing the equivalent of signing your name to that huge contract.  Don’t let one of those free trial scams rob you of your dignity.

Our laboratory analysis indicates these products are always sub-par.  You might wonder what does the quality of the product have to do with the manner they bill?  The answer is really easy to understand.  These places do not care one iota if you come back.  They are all what we call “one-offs”.  They put their customers through the spin cycle, rob them with a contract and know they are never going to come back.  If you knew your customer was never going to come back again how much would you go out of your way for them? They don’t go out of their way for you on anything other than taking your money.  Think about a place you give regular business.  As a loyal customer they usually roll out the red carpet.  Would you be loyal a body shop who changed your brake pads if the guy who owned it was in the back running your card and sending you a new set of roters every month you didn’t need?  If the contract is 10 pages long use common sense.

Fake Doctors

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Today it is a shame but you can literally buy stock pictures of doctors over the internet and put them on your website usually no questions asked.  This practice is rampant and it is a real misrepresentation of what the actual medical community thinks of the product.  Snake Oil Salesman have been around bilking customers since the dawn of time touting miracle cures based on faulty science.  Just because there is a doctor there don’t assume that an actual doctor has promoted the product.  In fact.  Look at Super Beta Prostate.  They were recently slapped with a major lawsuit for misrepresenting a doctor.  The guy who spoke in the ad was in fact a real medical doctor.  But one who no longer practiced medicine and was a for hire actor.  He said that in the ad spot he shot he read what they wrote off of a teleprompter.

Mail Order Scams

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Mail order scams have been around since the Pony Express.  If you have ever subscribed to Popular Mechanics or a magazine from AARP or even potentially a life insurance policy those companies turn around and sell your name and information to the highest bidder and people targeting you based on your age and buying habits.  The person selling your information could be your credit card provider.  Even your bank.  They are not even responsible for what the people do with your information.  All they did was sell your phone number and mailing address.  Not all the mailers you see are complete scams.  But you should check out the company’s reputation and the credentials of the people in the mail order piece before buying.  Look at the BBB and rip off report and see if the company has any complaints or unsettled claims.

Powdered Herb Scams

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This one is a prolific scam in the vitamin business.  If there is research that comes out indicating that a really effective product high in sterols such as Saw Palmetto can help with prostate problems vitamin companies move in to capitalize on the research.  Not all products are equal.  There is a difference between fresh squeezed orange juice or the concentrate in a can like there is a difference between grapes grown in Napa Valley or those grown in South Dakota.  A company can buy a saw palmetto powder that is basically the equivalent of dried plant material put through a blender and tout that their product has over 300mg of it.  But the sterol content of the powder could be equal to 10mg of a high quality and potent extract of the same plant.  Or a premium form of Saw Palmetto or Beta Sitosterol extracted from Sugar Cane.

Telemarketing Scams

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We hate to say it because we do know of reputable businesses who do cold calling.  But unfortunately they are few and far between.  These are really some of the worst scams.  They are usually boiler room operations using slick high pressure salesmen.  Buying from one of them can be one of the worst ways to get a product because by the nature of that kind of sale you have not had time to research the company.  And even worst most of the salesmen in those operations are commission only and their upper management does not care about anything other than how much the salesman sales.  Often some of the highest commission salesmen are some of the most dishonest.  There is generally very little oversight.  And often the upper management does not even care what the person says as long as they get the sale.  We have actually heard of salesmen telling men they won a cruise with their wife just if they will buy the contract.  And once they have your credit card information some of the really bad ones will charge it every month to the point where you basically have to cancel your credit card.  And even worse than that they will often take your information and sell it to even more unethical people than your bank would sell to.  This is one reason there is so much identity theft and fraud.  If some high pressure salesman calls you pushing some miracle prostate product you should ask to be put on a do not call list and hang up.