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Online scam targeting our artists

Posted on 16 April 2013

We have received information from our artists about phone calls and/or emails they have received from someone who claims to be from Google or has a "special relationship" or access to Google and is offering the top spot on Google rankings.

The person reveals that the artist's portfolio has received a large amount of visitors and claims to guarantee top ranking for only a small fee (e.g. between 100 or 190 pounds). They ask for their personal and banking details. We suspect that the organisation is scamming our artists because when asked for their company's information or contact details, they hang up or become rude.

Artists Comments:

"I got a phone call yesterday...It came up as an international dialing code. I was spun the same story but it would have cost me only 100 pounds. I said no thanks and the gentleman suddenly became rude and slammed the phone."

"Just got a call from some [Scot]. Told him I'm in the bronze age and Google sounds funny - he hung up."

"I was contacted on Friday with the same story, unfortunately I was stupid and gave them my banking details but they couldn't access my account as it isn't a credit card account. I have since stopped my card so that no one can access my account. They haven't stopped phoning me for 2 days now, I'm just not answering!"

No one can guarantee website rankings in Google, Yahoo or Bing. Any vendor offering such guarantee is simply attracting you to become a part of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or advertising scams.

Please share this with other artists and others so that they can be aware of these scams and refrain from revealing any of their personal information especially their banking details.

If you have any information or comments, please feel free to contact us at marilyn@art.co.za.

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