With more and more business being done online websites will often add customer testimonials to their sites, a real face and a real story add credibility.

Unless those testimonials are fake.

I recently received an email from Asia Expat Guides promoting their expat services, helping people relocate into Asia. I went to their site and started checking out their testimonials. First surprise – there were a lot of them; 64 in total. Seemed to be a wide range of people from lots of countries, but something about the sameness of the testimonials raised a red flag.

I found very little online using the names and information given so I started digging into the images; here’s where it got really interesting.

“Jeff” is really happy about the help he got moving to Vietnam, only he turns out to be John Franklin, of John Franklin Ministries, in Kentucky, USA.

“Eugene” has a lot of spare time now that the cleaning of his apartment is sorted out in Vietnam, so much so that he’s apparently started moonlighting as John Price, the Director of the International School Monaco. Hell of a Commute.

Ibrahim is finding it so much easier to get around in China and chat with his neighbours, luckily he found time for an interview, looks like the interviewer was confused though – he keeps calling him Samir Ahmed.

Jessica’s worked really to get this job and is loving the challenges and excitement of the expat life. It was a refreshing change from her job as Rosanne Paul, Real Estate agent.

I’ve checked every image from the testimonials, sixty of which I could track to a real name,  none of them match the information Asia Expat Guides provide.

Asia Expat Guides say they’ve helped hundreds of expats; if that’s true why couldn’t they find 5 or 6 real people to write a testimonial?

They also say they’ve been in business for four years. Four years – and the website domain was only registered this year?

I smell a rat. A big one.

 

PostScript September 2018, Asia Expat Guides website is now offline

Images;

cybercrime
all other images taken from Asia Expat Guides 07/08/13

2 thoughts on “Scam File; Lying Testimonials Online

  1. Boom! Hilarious. Nice detective work. I’m curious how you track down the original images. I suspect a lot of other sites do this, and it would be fun to dig a little.

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