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Better Business Bureau ®
Start With Trust®
East AL, West & Southwest GA
Businesses Blackmailed with Negative Online Reviews
February 19, 2014

BUSINESSES ARE BLACKMAILED INTO PAYING A SCAMMER TO AVOID NEGATIVE REVIEWS

Columbus, Georgia – February 19, 2014. It has come to the BBB’s attention that a new scam is being perpetrated against businesses. Scammers contact businesses via email and demand payment. In exchange they promise to refrain from posting negative reviews about the business online. Here is an example of one of these emails:

Hello xxxx,

I appreciate your response. Many people call me the wicked blackmailer but I am not wicked.
I am very honest and sincere in what I do. My business is to contact small businesses like yours and you pay me $1500 or I blast negative reviews of your business on the internet.

It takes me only 10 minutes and your company website and details are allover the internet, telling all ptential clients that you are a scammer. Ouch! It cost me $5 to buy a prepaid visa card online and use for a free 30 day trial to auto submit negative reviews of your site to:

    Submission to hundreds of search engines and directories
    Submission to over 100,000 Free For All (FFA) Links pages
    I will also do manual submission to all scam review websites

You may be wondering how I do this? It is easy. I just create a free blog and do the reviews on it, about 20 reviews and then blast on the search engines. Note that I use all your keywords and company name to give a high ramking on search engines.

The best thing about me is that I am very honest and will not come back to you after you have paid the $1500. I will also blast positive reviews of your business to the above search engines and directories.

What many businesses like yours don't like me is because I give only 48 hours for you to deposit the $1500 in my account.

Remember that failure to comply means the end to your business.

Contact me ASAP for banking details. No negotiation please! Don't even asked.

Thank you and I look forward for your reply within 24 hours else you best know what awaits your business.

oops! you may like to see some proof of my negative reviews. You are free to make a request.
Sincerely Marvel

The scammer contacted the company through their Contact Us tab on their website. This particular one uses the name of Gwaabe Marvel and his email address was internetcrimes@usa.com.

If your business receives a similar threat please keep the following in mind:

  • Do not reply to the email because there is a potential for a virus, plus it shows the scammer that you are afraid and they might continue to threaten you.
  • Do not pay the blackmailer! No matter how “honest” a blackmailer purports himself/herself to be, you can be sure they will be back for more if you pay.
  • Go to www.ftc.gov to file a complaint.
  • Report the treat to the FBI; go to http://www.fbi.gov/report-threats-and-crime for contact info.
  • Visit www.bbb.org/scam-stopper  to learn how to avoid becoming a victim of a scam to get scam alerts.
  • Contact your local BBB at 706-324-0712 to get more information.

 

 

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Contact BBB serving East Alabama, West and Southwest Georgia at (706) 324-0712