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***SCAM*** Software download web sites. Beware!

by MarkFlax Forum moderator / March 12, 2010 5:50 AM PST

The internet being what it is, generally and often unregulated, there is little to prevent scammers from "setting up shop" with their own web sites and offer unbelievably cheap downloads of recognised software.

That Unbelievable is usually the clue. Such software, if it exists at all on these sites, is usually pirated. More often than not the software does not exist and when you provide your credit card details you find that a debit has been made on your account, but you have not been able to download the software. At worse, the scammers have your credit card details, and can withdraw your money at will.

These scam site attempt to foll visitors into believing that they have accreditation by adding images/logos to their pages for leading sites like CNET, Adobe, Microsoft, etc. But such accreditation does not exist, and those logos are just images, and are not clickable links to the parent web site.

While genuine web sites like CNET, Adobe, Microsoft, Verisign and so on take active steps to stop these sites once they become known, there is very little that can be done to prevent new ones from appearing.

That is what this Sticky discussion is about.

If you come across such a suspicious site, post details here with a {broken} link, eg http :// www.scam site.com . The two spaces in the web site address will make it non-clickable.

In addition, make the subject tile of your post include the web site, eg Is http://www.scamsite.com a scam site?

That way, the post will eventually be listed in Google, and that makes the post and this discussion available for any others who may be researching that web site.

If we find or decide that the web site is genuine, then we will delete the post to avoid problems for that web site, so please use caution in your postings, and if you are not sure, do not add the web site to the Subject title.

I will start this off;

Mark

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Is http://www.softvendors.net/ a SCAM web site?
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / March 12, 2010 5:52 AM PST

It looks like it to me.

The Certified logos from CNET, Verisign, Microsoft and Adobe are not clickable, and that means they are just images placed on the web page.

In their "About Us" page they include an image of their headquarters in Texas. I have seen that image elsewhere in such web sites.

Mark

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oemstoredigital.com - A Scam Site??
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / March 21, 2010 6:27 AM PDT

http : // www.oemstoredigital.com/

This is what I see when I visit that web site;
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1] An unbelievably long list of software products, offered at unbelievably cheap prices. The old maxim comes to mind, "If it looks too good to be true, then it usually is, (too good to be true)".

2] Download Policy - You have to scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page for this. It's a long page.

You pay your money then.... you wait for an email to arrive with instructions how and where to download.

3] From their FAQ;

Why is the software cheap?
You can take the software for downloading only! You don't have to pay for frilly package, license and printing user manual, which altogether makes up the majority of the total value. But, unfortunately, in this case you cannot get a technical support and different additional discounts from the producer. Also you can take updates which are available for the majority of our products. Finally, you will not pay for the delivery.

This is the part I will highlight, You don't have to pay for.... license....

Sorry, but you do have to pay for a license when you purchase these software packages from recognised stores. That makes this software pirated.

4] About Us.

No bricks and mortar address. No names given, no history that we could check.

5] Certification and Authentication claims;

"As featured in Denver Business Journal"

A search of DBJ's web site found no trace of either "Authorised Software Resellers" or "OEMDigitalStore.com"

"BizRate.com Customer Certified".

The icon states, "Click here to verify". It is just an image, not a link.

"Shopping.com Certified Store"

Clever, a search of "Authorised Software Resellers" finds that all of their sellers are, 'Authorised Software Resellers'. that is, all the sellers are authorised by Shopping.com. There is no way to check that this site has been verified b Shopping.com

"NextTag.com"

This is also a shopping.com type web site, as is Amazon and many others. It is almost impossible to confirm that this web site has been approved by NextTag.com.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My conclusions? Stay away. It is a scam.

Mark

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Is http://www.thedrilldance.com a scam site?
by nerdant / July 14, 2010 11:20 PM PDT

My boss just got an email from Files2(a)thedrilldance.com showing insanely cheap software.

The name of the company is "Authorised Software Reseller".
It def looks like a scam.
Hopefully this will help others.

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You MIGHT get your software, but...
by ManagedDesign / July 26, 2010 11:32 PM PDT

This site sports jaw-dropingly cheap versions of popular Autodesk titles like AutoCAD & AutoCAD LT, not to mention Adobe titles, Solidworks, etc. Most are older versions marked as "overstock" or "used" or some other term. Here is the scoop on purchasing this kind of software, specifically the Autodesk titles:

While this company may deliver working software, it is not upgradable. Each piece of software Autodesk sells comes with a unique serial number linked to the original owner. Only the original owner can upgrade that piece of software to a current version. Corporations and educational institutions beware; Autodesk has a License Compliance team that is very keen on getting these illegal titles put away for good. They have been known to take even small companies to court over license infringement.

So there you have it. My assessment is that this isn't a scam Per Se, the risks of purchasing software from this type of site (especially for a business or institution) far outweigh the benefits. Go to an Authorized Reseller to get your software - most offer free support and are staffed with industry experts who can help you if you have a problem. You won't get THAT from a discount software sight.

Greg Bates
Managed Design Inc

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So,
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / July 27, 2010 4:52 AM PDT

You don't consider such sites, this site in particular, to be scams, offering pirated software and at the same time attempting to prove their genuine status by falsely including such logos as BizRate.com, NextTag.com into their web site?

No licenses, no manuals, no support.

I have to wonder at the credentials of a business that considers purchasing titles from sites such as these, instead of purchasing direct from the developers or from well known, recognised, and trusted sources.

A final note. Signature advertising is not permitted in these forums.

Mark

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Is http:// www.fundes.edu.co/includes/domit/index.php a Scam
by CobieOD / March 22, 2010 1:40 AM PDT

This URL redirects to the softvendors.com site. I got an e-mail from pellet29blackstargls@hotmail.com with a subject line that said "Vacation Reply" at about 9:30 this morning. It has all the bells and whistles you described. It mainly consisted of a set of graphics with a bunch of 3 leaf clover everywhere with "You're in Luck, Big Savings on Great Products" in giant letters kind of thing with several popular products listed with great prices. They even had an unsubscribe link at the bottom (which also goes to the softvendors.com site, I actually hit the unsubscribe ) as well as the name of a marketing firm, the bottom of the e-mail looked like this:

[[[Unsubscribe Profile
This email was sent by: Shauna
18938 Hutton Dr Ste 581 Dallas, TX, 31801-7138, USA
Copyright 2010. Shauna Marketing. All Rights Reserved.]]]

I looked up the firm, it doesn't exist that I could find. You'll notice there's no phone number either. Hope it helps someone out.

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www.fundes.edu.co/includes/domit/index.php looks a scam site
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / March 22, 2010 6:28 AM PDT

Good catch.

It is not to be confused with www.fundes.edu.co which at first glance seems a genuine Spanish language University site, but since I don't understand Spanish I cannot check further.

However, http: // www. fundes.edu.co /includes/domit/index.php does redirect to http: // softvendors,net which was the first scam site listed in this thread, in this post.

It's the same site. I did see a phone number on the redirect site I saw, a Call Center toll free number, but the About page shows the same Texas address as before and the same building image.

So thanks for that information, and keep it coming. Happy

Mark

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www.adobeabodes.com - Scam site?
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / April 3, 2010 4:52 AM PDT

It looks like it;

http://www.adobeabodes.com/

It has a false "CNET Certified Store" image at the bottom of the page. In fact none of the other 'certified' logo sites are real.

The "About us" shows no history of the web site, nor who they are, where they are from, etc, and the FAQ shows that;

"You can take the software for downloading only! You don't have to pay for frilly package, license and printing user manual, which altogether makes up the majority of the total value."

The no license is the giveaway.

I would suggest that http://www.adobeabodes.com is indeed a scam site, and I would not trust them with my credit card details.

Mark

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software-buy com
by Lovefists / May 25, 2010 3:25 PM PDT

I found another site which shares the IDENTICAL text of adobabodes FAQ. It is software-buy com.

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www.software-buy.com - Scam site? Possibly.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / May 25, 2010 7:26 PM PDT
In reply to: software-buy com

Good find.

I visited the software-buy com web site but didn't very far because my browser security app WOT, (Web of Trust), popped up with a red-alarm warning.

Full details of their warning here;
http://www.mywot.com/en/scorecard/software-buy.com

Needless to say I will not be visiting that site to purchase anything.

Mark

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www.download-box.net (exactly as you've described)
by inklaboratory / June 6, 2010 3:55 PM PDT

This site has the same afformention picture of their 'headquarters' in texas with insanely low prices.
Glad I didnt go through with it and instead used my gut and did a bit of research on it.

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Indeed download-box.net
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / June 6, 2010 8:00 PM PDT

does appear to be a scam site.

In fact when I visited the site my browser security add-on WOT, (World of Trust), prevented the browser from loading it fully with this warning;
http://www.mywot.com/en/scorecard/download-box.net

Only one review there to be sure, but I decided not to venture further into the site.

Thank you for that information.

Mark

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www.adobeabodes.com
by sightedrewards / April 14, 2011 7:14 AM PDT

This site is a SCAM! Yeah I was taken in but, I managed to realize it when the software would not download and the error messages I got.

Transaction and card canceled immediately! Card was posted by the bank as "hot carded".

The offices are out of Moscow (run by a Russian woman), there is a 48 hour wait for tech support, and there is no live support available. Too cheep to be real. DAh. In 48 hours they can do much damage.

They also claim that it is not their fault that the software won't download because of operator error.

For get it...save your money by the real deal or take a classes at an institution that offers the Adobe education credit.

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Certainly looks like one of the scam sites.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / April 14, 2011 9:50 PM PDT
In reply to: www.adobeabodes.com

www.adobeabodes.com looks highly suspicious to me.

Their FAQ;

Why is the software cheap?
You can take the software for downloading only! You don't have to pay
for frilly package, license and printing user manual, which altogether
makes up the majority of the total value. But, unfortunately, in this
case you cannot get a technical support and different additional
discounts from the producer


The software is pirated. That is why it is so cheap.

Thanks for your report.

Mark

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EMSoftware - Suspect Scam site.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / July 8, 2010 8:56 PM PDT

This is EMSoftware at www eusoft.me

Information I have been able to find;

The server stats appear to originate from Latvia

A Whois if this site shows that the domain/site is registered to "Eugeniy Borodin" who owns about 33 other domains.

Registrant City:Moskow
Admin City:Saint-Petersburg
Tech City:Saint-Petersburg

I didn't access the site directly because my WOT browser security add-on prevented me from doing so. WOT rating here;
http://www.mywot.com/en/scorecard/eusoft.me

I would not visit this site for any apparent 'cheap' software.

Mark

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Scam Software
by ipinion / July 15, 2010 4:43 PM PDT

Hello Mark
This address might be another for fake software- http: //idealprice- software.com/
It has a BBBonline clickable logo on the right hand side of the sites pages. The certificate(?) that is then displayed has misleading links including one that leads to a 'phishing website' warning sign.
The hallmarks of lots of items available and cheap prices are there in abundance.
Hope this proves useful
Regards

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Absolutely
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / July 15, 2010 8:24 PM PDT
In reply to: Scam Software

And thanks for alerting us to this web site. See my evaluation below.

Thanks again.

Mark

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**SCAM** Euro Software at http://idealprice-software.com/ ??
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / July 15, 2010 8:23 PM PDT

EuroSoft, or Euro Software, at http ://idealprice - software.com/

Almost certainly a scam web site selling software that is not genuine and is not covered by the software developers' licensing terms.

What I found;

Despite the web site naming itself EuroSoft or Euro Software, it has an address at "210 East 59st Street New York, NY 10021 (718) 524-2096". A New York based, American software distributor calling itself EuroSoft, or Euro Software?

Bad English. The site is riddled with poor English, not a good sign for an American based company.

Location. I Google Mapped the zip code (NY 10021), and sure enough, Google Maps took me to a location in New York, but some distance away from E 59th street. In fact the location was between E 72nd and E 73rd streets.

I then Google Mapped "210 East 59st Street New York, NY 10021". No trace!

Other signs;

All software can only be downloaded. You do not get CD or DVD versions.

All software is in compressed format, eg zip or rar. I do not know of any genuine commercial software developer who supplies their products in zip or rar format.

Their "About us" page suggests "our company and the European Manufacturer's Association have developed a special program of reducing prices for popular software in this period of world economic crisis".

I Googled "European Manufacturer's Association", and this is the search result. I see European Computer Manufacturer's Association, European "Fertilizer" Manufacturer's Association, European "Power Supply" Manufacturer's Association, and... you get the picture. No EMA.

These are all OEM versions. OEM's are tied to specific computers and are not available as genuine download versions.

Microsoft does not supply any of it's Windows Operating Systems from download sites, nor in zip or rar formats.

My advice is, STAY AWAY. You purchase software from this web site at your own risk, and if you give your credit/debit card details to this site, you are giving away personal financial details that you may not want to give.

Mark

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Adobeabode.com
by geebee800 / July 16, 2010 8:11 PM PDT

Wish I had checked here first! Credit card deduction was from some mob in MOSCOW! Needless to say, the Contact Us details for both the Moscow "company" and Adobeabode.com were returned as undeliverable e-mails.

I feel cheap and violated. Worse still, I should know better.

Ah well....credit card cancellation first thing Monday.

Geebee

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http://buyrealsoftware.com/index.php is a scam
by azanu / August 6, 2010 11:14 PM PDT

I've heard about a similar website to this, also called authorized software resellers so I was suspicious and when i checked its sponsors, the links were unclickable.

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I agree
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / August 7, 2010 12:31 AM PDT

that http: // buyrealsoftware.com/index.php looks highly suspicious.

Mark

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To azanu
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / August 7, 2010 12:29 AM PDT
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Legitimate Business?
by MaxBox / January 1, 2011 4:56 AM PST
In reply to: To azanu

Because a company is registered somewhere may make them a LEGAL COMPANY. That does not make them a LEGITIMATE BUSINESS, except in the broadest sense of the word.

That said, I visited this site. I don't know what the original complaint was, but certainly appears to be a legitimate site to me.

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The words we use
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / January 1, 2011 6:19 AM PST
In reply to: Legitimate Business?

You choose to argue semantics but you're right of course. However I chose my words carefully.

A Legitimate Business says they are registered, known to the authorities and so consumers are protected by the laws of the land.

In truth I can't remember the original enquiry except that I felt I had to remove it. I'm satisfied that the site in question is not a scam, and I didn't want that site and the word scam, or other derogatory term, listing in search engines.

Thanks for your post.

Mark

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www.software-reseller.net a SCAM site?
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / August 24, 2010 10:11 PM PDT

YES, it certainly looks like it.

Their "Terms & Conditions" page;

"2.5 Software cannot be registered on-line due to certain limitations;"

That's a sure sign. If you purchase recognised and legal software which offers registration of it's product, there should be no limitations to registering the product. This is a sure sign that this site is offering titles that are pirated and so cannot be registered.

And in their FAQ;

1. Why do you sell software cheaper than official brand providers do?

Because buying the software with us you receive the copies of downloaded licensed versions.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Genuine suppliers do not provide copies.

And also, but by no means finally, their CNET logo is a fake; it has been captured as an image and is not clickable.

Mark

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I came across these today
by cane9man / December 6, 2010 1:15 AM PST

These four are all similar, and fall right in line with what others have identified - poor use of English, none are secure websites, some have fake CNET logos, some claim the ability to chat with a live agent, but there are no operators available...not to mention that their prices are outrageously low.

http: // www.hotofficewebsite.info/
http: // www.dealpro.info/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=12
http: // software-stocks.com/office-2007.html
http: // softbidding.com/office-2007.html

Thank you all for your insight.

Chuck

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Another contender? http://softsupreme.net/
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / December 11, 2010 6:23 PM PST

Soft Supreme . net

What I see from that site;

1] The 'certificates', (also one for C|NET Certified Stores), are images only, not clickable, so there is no way to confirm their validity.

2] Their About Us. I reckon I've seen that image before. That office complex seems to pop up all over the place.

3] Their Terms & Conditions includes the following;

2.3 The software we sell is packed into archives, which contain FULL BACKUP COPIES of original licensed software which have .zip format (to open them You need WinZip software);
2.4 The software is in the English language only!
2.5 Software cannot be registered on-line due to certain limitations;
2.6 You will not be able to receive any printed license confirmation;
2.7 You will not receive any CD/DVD, we neither sell CD`s nor ship them
; 2.8 Some software includes ISO files (iso - CD image ) . You need to burn this type of files on CD/DVD and start a setup from a CD. You will get all directions for burning CDs/DVDs

This means.

==========================
Downloadable only and you need WinZip to extract them. Genuine software is never zipped.

Only English. Genuine software has language options.

Software cannot be registered online. Why? because it is pirated.

Will not receive any license information. Yep, because it is pirated.

CD/DVD versions not available. Why not? The genuine versions can be purchased in CD/DVD format.

Some software is in ISO format. Genuine versions are never in ISO format.
========================

It seems clear to me, this is another scam site.

Mark

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softsupreme.net
by andreamdavis1 / December 30, 2010 9:36 AM PST

thank you for this post. I just dodged a bullet with this company. What made me a little suspicious is thier about us page and that there wasn't any clear policies on their refunds. I checked thier whois and they've just started their website since July of this year. When it's to good to be true it really is!

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Definitely a Scam
by scotrinaf / February 21, 2011 10:06 PM PST

I google'd the address they show as "theirs", it brings up a company called "Regus" with the same address and building picture.

I called "Regus" and asked them if they were connected with a company called "softsupreme" and they said NO, they are aware of the fraudulent use of their information and have notified the FBI. They are in the midst of legal proceedings now to get the issue resolved.

I highly recommend NOT buying anything from this company!

Link to Regus:
http://www.regus.com/locations/US/GA/Alpharetta/GeorgiaAlpharettaMansell.htm

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Is http://www.softsonlinessite.us/ a scam site?
by Praendl / December 14, 2010 10:37 AM PST

I've been looking for a version of Windows 7 and the prices on this site are too good to be true. I've not found anything on scam sites about the site, but before I give up my hard-earned cash I need to know who I'm giving it too. There is also a .com site with a different name, but same graphics. Any insight is appreciated. Happy

http:// www. softsonlinessite.us/

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