When the undersigned started his journey of
the Internet in around 1997, there was lot of optimism around.
Internet at that time was considered a boon to the society and a
great tool to collaborate. Amongst the several promises that
Internet held, one was the development of home based employment
opportunities. The ideal of sitting in some corner of India and
doing work in another part of the country or the globe was a
prospect with unlimited benefits to people with individual
skills. It presented an opportunity for professionals to break
the barriers of resource crunch in the physical world to set up
virtual business or inability to move out from one physical
location to another.
However, as the years passed, this faith on
the Internet faded. As Cyber Crimes started raising their ugly
head it became increasingly difficult to trust anything
presented on the Internet. Home based employment was one of the
casualties in this process. Today whenever anything good is
written in any Internet site about home based employment, we
need to take it with a bucket of salt.
When I started my activities on the dawn of
this new year, I came across a news item
makes Rs 19,940/Month" .
carried a case study quoting an Indian name and presented a
house wife by name Durga Mathur (see accompanying photo) who claimed to be making close
to Rs 20,000/- per month in answering surveys.
The website carried a mast head "Business &
Finance Job News" and carried a web name
www.az-news.org and claimed
"We investigate jobs that allow people to work part time
from the compfort of their home..." and carried the story of
this person along with a beautiful picture of the lady with her
There was also a copy of a cheque for US
Dollars 32,290.05 with blanked out names drawn on Citi Bank. The
cheque was dated July 27, 2009 where as the story was dated
December 31, 2011 as if Durga Mathur had discovered the survey
The site also carried several other success
stories and more than 50 comments again giving some photographs
of people holding cheques etc.
The obvious next step was to find out which
is this site from which Durga Mathur could earn Rs 1000/- per
month so easily by filling up some survey forms. There was a
link "Survey Income Kit" and when it was clicked, there was a
warning from Mcafee Phishing Site Advisor that the site is
dangerous and collects financially sensitive information.
When the link was followed, it reached
http://www.surveys4checks.com/indexb.html which contained
the details of the scheme. The membership would cost US$49.99 or
I stopped my exploration here since at the
next step I would have to make the payment and also provide my
credit card details and with my pessimism corroborated by Mcafee
Advise there was no way I could have continued.
However the thought of how the trust on
Internet had eroded over the last 14-15 years of my Netizenship
crossed my mind and I thought that it was my responsibility to
bring this to the notice of the public.
On verification, the site surveys4checks.com
was hosted from California and registered in the name of Mr
Migdal Teffen with an Isreli address. The site az-news.org
itself is registered with a Los Angeles address with the name
It is obvious that this is a scam and
involves not only the site owners but also the model in the
picture and the financial intermediaries including payment
gateways and Paypal who collect the money for the site. The site
Mcafee Alert and Verisign certificates.
It is interesting to note that if we click on
the Macafee Alert on the website, it shows a postive report. But
it appears that the report is not that of this site but that of
another site namely clickbank.net.
While I advise readers to refrain from such
sites, I wish that the law enforcement agencies in India need to
take note of this kind of frauds and take preventive action. If
DIT can launch an attack of Facebook and other intermediaries
for defamatory messages, it should also be possible to take
action against Paypal and other payment gateways which support
such illegal activities.
This incident has been brought to the
attention of Mcafee and Verisign and their responses are
awaited. I have also requested for the address and contact
details of Durga Mathur from the site and if made available,
will check if the information given on the website is true.
[P.S: If any reader has an experience of an
honest home based internet employment service, he may send the
full details and after verification, the information would be shared with
January 01, 2012
Not sure if this site itself is reliable. My
advice still is "Donot pay anything upfront unless you know the
website owner in the physical world and therefore can verify the
genuinely of the offer or that you are prepared to take the risk
of losing the initial investment". When you part with your
credit card/paypal details thinking that it would not be
charged, then also there is a risk of identity theft as well as
automatic debit which is difficult to recover...Naavi
based business Scams