May 25, 2010

Dodgy paid web Ads

As some people may know , in my spare time I look after a number of websites for a some local musicians and a local venue and record label.  Recently I was forwarded an email by the site owner for my opinion from someone at linkstar.co.uk offering to pay $200/ year to put a simple text link and small bit of text on a particular page for one of their clients. Why someone would offer to pay that much without even knowing how many vistors the page gets (very few as it is not the main page) is is suspicious. Obviously they are actually after the search engines rather than real visitors.

My attitude generally is that the only ads  I would even consider putting on are for organisations with which the site owner has an existing relationship with. A quick google search suugests that linkstar's method of business is slightly dubious but they do pay,though why a supposedly british company would quote payment to anotherv uk site in $ is suspicious. I expressed my reservations but obviously he persued it further as today he forwarded a further email to me with the details of the proposed ad.  At this point it gets even more suspicious as the link is for a US based hearing aid company, the supplied paragraph of accompanying text came with a disclaimer about being translated from Chinese (which shows) and the relevance of the ad to the page on which it was to be placed was tenuous. However at first glance it still wasn't obvious where the scam was.

Closer investigation of the linked to page reveals why they are trying to direct traffic to this particular site. Adblock blocked to items related to atdmt which apparently is a very annoying bit of malware should you unwitingly get it on your system.  Wether the company is an unwitting, unknowing or deliberate participant is unknown. their site may have been hacked, or they may think they are just participating a scheme to boost their site hits. Either way I will refuse to put the up.


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