Scam warning: Obama 'stimulus checks' for you!

Caveat emptor--buyer beware! Before President Obama even signed the recent economic stimulus package into law, scam sites were thrown up and spam emails spewed forth offering unsuspecting punters the chance to submit their personal information to see if they were eligible to receive a piece of the pie--and how much.

The LA Times is reporting that sites such as jessicasmoneyblog.com and presidentobamagrants.com have been luring people in with the promise that they would cut through the red tape and get the government money in the post. Although neither of these sites is still active, probably due to action by the Federal Trade Commission and the Council of Better Business Bureaus, others remain hard to shut down.

One Phillippines-registered site, www.federalgovernmentgrantsolutions.com, is still operating, luring you to send in cash to receive your "free" Grant Program CDs; otherwise, "[y]ou could lose hundreds of dollars you didn't know you had." Interestingly, their form really only seems concerned to know your first name, and not your surname, but we'll pretend that did not happen.

PC World is reporting that some sites even make use of Obama's image. Clicking on a Google text ad that says "I Got a $12,000 Stimulus Check in Less than 7 days. Get Yours!" will take you to this site:

In this case to get the "service" working for you to get you your cash, you have got to sign up to a monthly credit-card-funded subscription of $79.95. The terms and conditions state that you have got seven days to cancel the service before your first charge of $79.95, but of course the unwary punter is likely to pay for the first month's subscription and wait around for longer than seven days to see if anything comes of it: the Google ad may have said that someone got his/her "Stimulus Check in Less than 7 days" but most people would likely wait around longer than that, thus guaranteeing the scammers at least one month's subscription (putting people who signed up at least $79.95 out of pocket before the penny drops).

Eileen Harrington of the FTC warns, "The bottom line on this is, these are scams. The stimulus is not passing out checks to individual consumers."

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

IE Mobile 6 to be available on new WM 6.1 smartphones

Next Story

Beta to RC changes – Turning windows features on or off

21 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

The idiots in Washington are throwing around trillions of our dollars, and I'm supposed to be concerned about what these websites are doing?

Yes, you are only allowed to be concerned about one thing. Well actually most of us have the mental capacity to handle more than that but I'd guess for some one thing at a time is about right.

TRC said,
Yes, you are only allowed to be concerned about one thing. Well actually most of us have the mental capacity to handle more than that but I'd guess for some one thing at a time is about right.

Well what these websites are doing doesn't affect me. The mess that's going on in Washington does.

Most of the stuff posted on Neowin probably doesn't affect you. If you're not interested in the article why even bother replying?

TRC said,
Most of the stuff posted on Neowin probably doesn't affect you. If you're not interested in the article why even bother replying?

Just because you disagree with his position doesn't make your interest more interesting than his lack thereof.

And in all actuality if you weren't so busy trying to create a problem you would have noticed that his comment actually produced more deep thought (read: higher intellectual functioning) than every other comment on here.

TRC said,
Most of the stuff posted on Neowin probably doesn't affect you. If you're not interested in the article why even bother replying?

How about this? Maybe he's not interested in the article and wants to complain, hoping that Neowin will see his complaints, and those of others, and stop reporting this type of news. So by your logic we should all just ignore things we don't like?

Just to be clear, I wasn't complaining about this story being posted. I was just pointing out the absurdity of getting upset about these sites.

Eis said,
Just because you disagree with his position doesn't make your interest more interesting than his lack thereof.

That would make sense if his post had any relevance at all to the topic. It's like going in a Windows 7 topic and complaining that people dying of hunger is more important.

non.sequitur2 said,
How about this? Maybe he's not interested in the article and wants to complain, hoping that Neowin will see his complaints, and those of others, and stop reporting this type of news. So by your logic we should all just ignore things we don't like?

When it comes to news posts I'd say yes. If you are going to whine in every post you don't like I think most people would just prefer you didn't.

Just to be clear, I wasn't complaining about this story being posted. I was just pointing out the absurdity of getting upset about these sites.

So an email scam is going around, and it's posted on a tech news site, and somehow discussing it is absurd? Sorry but I don't get it.

TRC said,
That would make sense if his post had any relevance at all to the topic. It's like going in a Windows 7 topic and complaining that people dying of hunger is more important.

Only in this case, problem "B" is a direct result of problem "A." These guys are picking up loose change that fell to the ground after a bank robbery.

I actually saw one the other day that said "I'z got mez moneys from my bro 'Bama get yurz too sign up below" with a picture of what looked like some rapper black guy with gold teeth holding a roll of hundred dollar bills... i was thinking you have got to be kidding me... people fall for this?

Well, if people actually think that the government will give them money by providing details on a non-government webpage, then they deserve anything and everything they get.

"A fool and his money are soon parted". The Internet merely speeds up the process.

donBoomy said,
and chicks for free


ha ha.

I think Obama is 'The Sultan of Swing'.

Two reasons people fall for these scams, 1)Greed 2)Stupidity

leesmithg said,
ha ha.

I think Obama is 'The Sultan of Swing'.

Actually, no, that's Bill Clinton. But we get the idea. Still waiting on my "individual stimulus check" here. It's been 21 days now...what does that mean??

Although they say "there's no such thing as a honest business," these sites are beyond business and honesty. How do these people sleep at night? Or, do they even sleep at all?

KevinRGood said,
Although they say "there's no such thing as a honest business," these sites are beyond business and honesty. How do these people sleep at night? Or, do they even sleep at all?

I ask the same about Obama and crew.