By Jason | Published February 5th, 2011
Since my last blog entry early this year I have started seeing more and more of these Penny Auction sites, some of which actually look promising. For example, I saw a commercial on TV for QuiBids so decided to take a look and see how truthful they are as opposed to BidFan.
On their home page it states QuiBids is a BBB Accredited Business so that’s where I went to first. I was surprised to see that they were indeed accredited and since September of last year and they have a A- rating with responses to 144 complaints filed against them (yikes!), here’s a link to the BBB Review. Contact information is also listed there as well as in the whois info of the domain name.
So digging further I went to QuiBids register page where they have a video from News 9 channel. I Googled the anchor woman, Kristen McIntyre, plus news 9 and returned what looks to be a legitimate news station in Oklahoma. All menu items go to where they should go (unlike BidFan that used a fake news station website which the menu items took you to BidFan). Below the video they claim they have been in articles from ABC, MSNBC, etc. Now just try to find those articles, I couldn’t with just simple Google searches (i.e. msnbc quibids article, etc.).
I did come across a Wired article but only reason it showed up is someone posted the URL to QuiBids website, I don’t think that counts. Their also listed on local news channel websites which happen to be ABC or whatever.
The last thing I found was a PDF document from Beckham & Mandel, Business Litigation Attorneys, here’s the link to the document. It’s a class action lawsuit which you can read if you feel like it. So while QuiBids looks a bit more legitimate than BidFan, QuiBids might be the safer Penny Auction to try out if you’re really interested but I would still advise not bothering with any of them.
By Jason | Published January 6th, 2011
A customer of mine sent me an email asking what I thought of this online bid site and included a URL to a review of the site by Channel 9 News – How To Save Money In A Recession. I read through the article and clicked on their link towards the end of the article stating “Use our link to get discounted bidbacks!”.
Upon visiting the BidFan you’re exposed to a lot of familiar logos such as ABC, CBS, NBC, etc. and, actually, a nicely designed web page. Scrolling down the page you’ll see a list of current auctions including time remaining, cost and current bidder. Take a look at one of the items on auction that has 30 seconds left or so noting the current bid and bidder then wait 10 seconds and refresh the page… oh look! Instead of having 20 seconds left for the same item it now has 40 (and also has the same bid and bidder). That’s the first clue.
Scrolling down further you’ll see quotes from Wired, New York Times and BBC but if you Google for those reviews you’ll find none. That’s the second clue.
Going back to the Channel 9 News page, click on one of the links (i.e. the menu bar, click on US, World, Business, etc.) and you’ll promptly be taken to BidFan’s website. Clue three.
By now you probably do not need additional information to come to the conclusion that this site is a potential internet scam but on the Channel 9 News page, towards the bottom, are comments. It states 10 of 177 comments but there is no way to view any other comments and also it says Julie Ayers reports. Google her name and the first result is a link to a report on another internet scam.
If that’s not enough to convince you go ahead and create an account. Afterwards it’ll tell you that you’re one step away from bidding, all you have to do is buy a Bid Package (125 bids at $75 or 250 bids at $250). Why do you have to pay for bids up front? That goes against all other auction sites that I am familiar with.
By Jason | Published June 16th, 2010
Awhile back I saw this commercial for MyCleanPC application which claimed the following with their Free Diagnosis (taken directly from their website):
- Quickly clean your system and increase speed
- Get rid of infected emails, pop-ups and spam
- Remove dangerous spyware and viruses
- Prevent annoying screen freezes, crashes and errors
It’s one of many available applications that advertise on TV & radio and always been curious on how well they actually worked but never took the time to check them out. The day I saw the commercial was just after I ran a clean install of Vista on my PC so decided to see what it would find.
It found 198 errors on this fresh installation of Vista, majority of the errors were empty registry entries. Actually I did install Borderlands for my nephew but that was it.