The only thing 'guaranteed' with this scam is that you'll lose your money!


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These scammers promise massive, 'guaranteed' profits. But the only thing guaranteed is that you'll end up worse off.

The word 'guarantee' jumped out at me twice in my Sunday newspaper recently. One was in an full page advert from high street store John Lewis to promote its minimum two year guarantee on electrical goods. That guarantee was useful to me when the kettle I'd bought from the retailer literally collapsed after one year and ten months. The shop gave me my money back, which I promptly spent on a new kettle.

The other was in a smaller advert which said: "Make £1,200 per day! Guaranteed! No selling."

It offered a "free report" on how I could do this for which I have applied. This same advert has also appeared with a more modest £1,000 a day guaranteed income.

A worthwhile guarantee

Two uses of the same word. One is from a huge organisation which can easily afford to deal with the small percentage of appliances which fail. John Lewis knows this guarantee increases customer confidence so bringing more people into its stores.

Land's End – a US clothing firm which also operates in the UK – has a "Guaranteed. Period." promise. No matter how long you have had its garments, it will replace them if you send them back. Yes, one in one hundred thousand customers buys a pair of jeans, wears them every day for years and then returns the stinking rags.

But the abuse is minimal compared with the customer confidence the firm's warranty engenders.
The typical long-term return is from someone who bought a garment, pushed it to the back of the wardrobe and then decided they do not like the colour or the style. They send it back a year or two later unopened.

A worthless guarantee

The smaller 'guaranteed' advert which involves much larger sums than a kettle or a shirt appears to come from a whole series of websites, all of which have names that imply you can become stinking rich. Whether it is £1,200 or £1,000 a day, that's £200,000 plus over a year, even if I were only to work five days a week and take holidays.

How can that be guaranteed? And what do you have to do? It promises "no selling". Despite applying for further details, they have yet to arrive in my inbox.

Still, while I am waiting, I can admire what is in store for me. The first website automatically leads to another where there is a picture of a man in his late thirties/early forties with a very expensive Italian car, one of those vehicles where you can break the speed limit without getting out of first gear but which are useless for carrying shopping. You can also rent them by the hour for photo-shoots.

I look further. The guy in the picture seems to have as many names as he he does websites, all of which are registered anonymously although many no longer work. He also has a large number of addresses. All are maildrops. And he has been taken to court many times where judgement has been issued against him, although whether claimants ever pick up money from him is unclear.

How the scam works

So what is the business enterprise? It appears that you buy an internet "traffic pack" for many hundreds of pounds from the guy with the very expensive car. There is, of course, no mention of costs until you delve deep into the scheme.

This payment entitles you to the income from "banner ads" on websites. But unless you can recruit the right number of new people (who have to fork out their own cash) to the scheme, you have to pay again the next month and so on.

It gets worse.

If you fail to purchase the same package every month, you lose all the traffic the pack has ever provided. So you go back to zero.. And as you depend on the scam merchant for the internet traffic figures, the likelihood is that you will never get any results beyond the first few months.

What is the income, what are the websites and why don't those sites keep their own income? There is no answer to any of these questions. The adverts are for legitimate products, but as the websites are almost certainly part of this scam, they will attract few viewers and an even lower number (if any) of buyers.

There are hundreds of these money generation schemes around which never work for anyone, other than for the person who sets them up. And even that is not guaranteed. But what is guaranteed – as evidenced by the scamster here – is that as one plan fails, another will take its place.

Revealed: The 10 most common scams

Revealed: The 10 most common scams

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