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E-Marketing Performance Blog

Misidentified as a Scammer

FraudTwice in the past couple of weeks we’ve been contacted by people who thought we had charged their credit card against their will. We didn’t, but you might find this interesting.

When the calls came in I immediately knew that it wasn’t us, but I also felt it was my duty to help these individuals. After all, someone is out there giving SEOs a bad name! They had obviously been ripped off and I wanted to do what I could.

Both callers stated that they were charged multiple times (in increments of approx $15) for an SEO guide. The specific details shown on the statement were ‘pm-seoguide.com’ and ‘NV’. We’re located in Nevada so that’s how these two made the connection to us, but I have not been able to duplicate any search that brings up my company with ‘seo guide’. Strange.

The Culprit

With the callers on the phone I had them type in www.pm-guide.com in their browser. That URL redirects to a SEO Learning Center. What is most interesting about this is that there are several links for help, contact, news, etc. but all of them lead you right back to a login page.

In order to continue, you must first log in. Please enter your username and password to log in.

Hmmm. Friendly.

So I did a quick check of their whois information and found this:

Administrative Contact:
SmartNet Development, Inc
SmartNet Development (domains@smartnetdevelopment.com)
Fax: +1.7028356891
10161 Park Run Drive
Suite 150
Las Vegas, NV 89145

I provided the above information on to each caller; it was the least I could do. Then I did a bit of searching on my own. Doesn’t look like these guys have a good reputation.

Beware! Check your credit card statements. We have another scammer in action, charging peoples credit cards without their permission. Let’s hope somebody stops these guys through legal means. And soon.

Stoney G deGeyter

Stoney deGeyter is the author of The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!. He is the founder and CEO of Pole Position Marketing, a web presence optimization firm whose pit crew has been velocitizing websites since 1998. In his free time Stoney gets involved in community services and ministries with his “bride enjoy” and his children. Read Stoney’s full bio.

16 Responses to Misidentified as a Scammer

  1. Stoney G deGeyter
    Stoney deGeyter says:

    Jorge, I just want to make sure that this is not us that is charging you. Please see contact information provided in the original post. These are the people charging your card. Hope this helps.

  2. JORGE VARONA says:

    I think I have fallen in a fraud from you because every mounth (from septembre 2006) I am charged multiple times (in increments of approx $9.95 USD) for an SEO guide. WHy I Must pay you? Why you had charged my credit card against my will?

    I refuse anyl service from SEO-GUIDE.COM LAS VEGAS. I want to finish this history.

  3. Eddie Davis says:

    just received bank statement has (3) all from this (pm-seoguide.com totaling 21.87 which I know nothing of such comp. please send info.to me about how I can trace this down this is the second month that this has happened hope to here from you Eddie Davis

  4. Valmoore Cliche says:

    I am another who has been taken by these people. They are known as;FAST ACTION PROFIT; FAST ACTION PROFIT AUCTION TAX SAVER; FAST ACTION PROFIT SEOGUIDE.COM. their corp. tel. number is 1/800/595/3986. Customer service number is; 1/866/652/0479. Home office is in the Phillipines and are currently moving to the states. I suggest a telephone barrage to them. The corp. rep. was a winner to say the least. Good luck Val Cliche.

  5. Donna says:

    February 2006 Someone stold my cc # and I was charged several hundred dollars for purchases made to the following sites:
    All charges placed on my card came from Las Vegas NV. I am turning it in to my credit card company.

  6. Erin says:

    The following is what I sent to E-Bay’s fraud report center. Hopefully they will stop them from using products in their name to scam people.

    Rip Off Report:Fast Auction Pro Or Smart Net Development, Ripped me off and several others, using E-Bay start up disk to get account information. The terms and conditions are not listed when you pay the $1.97 E-Bay C.D., stating that they can continue to take money from your account every month, until you contact them. Please check out this spam report site below, and see how many people were scammed. The only way to stop this scam, is to stop them from selling E-Bay set-up disks. All the information they offer anyway, is free on several sites, like SBA and Strategic RE Trends, these people are up to no good. Please Help.

  7. SmartNet Development is doing exactly the same thing to my business, making unauthorized charges under the name PM-GRANTSEARCH.COM. They don’t trade as GrantSearch or own the grantsearch.com domain, we do, and constantly get abusive emails and threats of legal action from their victims.

    There seems to be no procedure for merchants to report fraud by other merchants, so they keep getting away with it, moving from one industry to another. Their operations are wide ranging and increasingly devious.

    First, there are multiple web sites offering ‘free’ CDs for which victims submit their email, street addresses and credit card details for shipping, unwittingly signing up for monthly subscriptions they’re unable to cancel. Personal details are then onsold to third parties for direct marketing purposes. Unrelated web sites are paid commission for sending visitors to the CD sites.

    Next, there’s a ‘make fast money on the internet’ business selling clones of the CD sites with slightly different graphics and domain names. None of these sites have links – they’re just one page hosted at another site with a disclaimer under the jurisdiction of Belize!

    Then there’s a sideline in web site promotion and partnerships, trading under several different names but following the same template, responsible for generating and marketing clickthroughs, links, email lists and direct marketing. Easy money alright!

    Phone numbers, web sites and trading names are changed regularly, but there are no contact email addresses or named staff. Two street addresses are given, one in Utah and the other Las Vegas, but they’re not real – I’ve checked. The only constant is Utah, where SmartNet Development is registered and where the credit card money is banked.

    Any suggestions how to hunt down and stop these cheats?

  8. Barbara J. Ginther says:

    I do not even know how they got my charge number, but have been charged for services, I don’t even know what they are for. I have contaceted the Charge company, and they are trying to help, but are finding it difficult, with out changing charge numbers, and making it difficult for every one.

  9. Arthur says:

    I have been billed by “DR *KeyWords4Success 866-652-0479 CO” They claim I signed up for some kind of “SERVICE” but they refuse to stop billing me Eventhough they gave me a Cancelation number over the phone . I am getting billed 39.95 /month

  10. Aharon Ben-Haim says:

    Starting November 2006 I have been fraudulently charged by Pm-Seoguide.com, Pm-Keywordsuccess.com, Fastauctionprofit00 Of, Blockbuster Online, Emusic.com, Rn *rhapsody Music, Search Engine Learning, Musicmatch.com. I cancelled my card. The bank reimburses only the last 2 months. What can I do to recover my money?
    Can we start a class action and nail these bandits? Can they be legally persecuted?
    I have the feeling they got my details from e-bay and/or PayPal.
    Who knows what can be done?
    Our banks have the means to investigate where the money goes to. They should act on their customers behalf. It is their money as well.

  11. Rebecca says:

    I, like a many other people have been scammed by Dr Keywords4Success, Dr My Seo Guide and Clickbuilder {whoever they are} Will somebody please tell me how?

    My bank statement show 3 amounts of $39.95, $7.95 and $9.95

  12. Lori says:

    But I also have been and still am a Victim of scam by these companies;
    MC-DR*KEYWORDSUCCESS 952-908-4112 CO for 39.95 ; MC-DR*CLICKBUILDER 952-908-4112 CO for 7.95 ; MC-DR*MY SEO GUIDE 952-646-5288 CO even though I canceled the service 2 days after signing up when I realized it was a scam. I have currently wasted 38 min. of my cellphone minutes waiting for the “next available customer service rep; calls are answered in the order they are recevied” That is on a long distance # mind you! If you can help me in anyway get a contact # or address that is any good, I’d like to forward it to the correct authorities even if that ends up being my attorney. I even contacted my bank’s CC fraud services and they told me the charges would be removed pending an investigation, but they never were!

  13. Michael Hutchins says:

    Hello All,

    SmartNet Development is actually located in Saint George, Utah. They are a company that specializes in “Internet Offers”. You think you’re only paying $1.97 S&H for a Free Cd but where they get you is on the “Thank You” page. after your card is charged and you’re sent to the “Thank You” page your actually enrolled in “Trial Offers” and if you don’t cancel out SmartNet will get upwards of $72.00 a month from your credit card.

    Customer Support: 435-654-0479

    President: Alan Dunn

    Vice President: Clint Coonfer

    Chief Financial Officer: Darrin Toone

    Internet Offers:
    Fast Web Profit
    Fast Auction Profit
    Rapid Auction Response
    Rapid Auction Profit

    I Hope this helps.