Thursday, March 12, 2009

Government Grant Scams

Government grant scams have been around for a long time, but with the passing of the President's Stimulus Program Internet scammers are popping up like spring daffodils.

You might be curious if there is government money available for you. It is true that searching through the Gov's database is time consuming and a bit overwhelming, but don't believe any website or person that tells you they can provide an easy to read/understand grant list.

I typed in "stimulus grants" into my web browser to see what would come up. If you are familiar with the Google layout you know the first things that appear are sponsored links (a.k.a. paid advertising) they are located at the top and right of your screen. After that you'll find unpaid articles and websites. Many of the right hand links contain the words "Free" or even "Warning". These headlines may make you think that they are useful sites. I clicked a couple, one that said "Free" and another that said "Government Grant Scam". Both led me to sites that looked like blogs, but in actuality are advertising. The blog-like text in both tries to sound like they are on your side. They offer advice like "Our top pick is The Grant University which is 100% free" and "After 6 months of testing, and after trying several grant kits on the market our team has created a list of the best grant products currently being sold."

Usually the site promises free information that comes on a CD. You only need to pay shipping, but to do that you must provide a credit card and agree to the terms. NOTE: Terms is the biggest tip that this is a scam. The terms state that you'll get a free or trial membership of some kind. Often after 30 days you'll then be charged a monthly fee and sometimes an automatic one-time fee for some so-called benefit.

(click to enlarge)

These sites althought less than reputable are not illegal. The premise behind the scammer business model is also not a new one. To get real, free information on government grants go right to the source. The Government has a fairly easy to navigate grant site call Only official U.S. Government sites can use the .gov extension on URLs. You might also look at

No comments:

Post a Comment