saved me from a digital camera scam

Fri, Jan 5, 2007


I am in the market to purchase a Canon Digital Rebel XTi. Like any self-proclaimed nerd, I looked to the internet to find the best deal avaliable. I googled the name of the camera and saw a sponsored link for They had a phenomenal price for the camera at $399. This was almost $300 less than’s price. Also in the Google search I came across at a similar price of $459. advertises all over the internet, including the popular There are even fake rating sites saying how wonderful is as a store. After checking major sites like and, I kept coming back to the two previously mentioned sites. I was very tempted by the low price but was slightly hesitant to pull the trigger.

Something did not feel right to me about the two sites offering the camera at such a deep discount, especially since the best deal I found on was for over $600. Since I had never heard of either website, a friend recommended that I take a look at, which rates online merchants on a score from 0 to 10. I typed in and saw that it was ranked 0.2 out of 10. Ouch!

It turns out that both sites, and are ‘bait and switch’ operations. According to posts on, they lure you in with a deal too good to be true. Once they receive your order online, they send you an e-mail asking you to call a sales representative, who then tries to convince you to buy overpriced, made-up accessories. If you do not agree to the accessories, they become belligerent and still charge your credit cards. If you do agree to buy the phantom accessories, they don’t even send you the right items and also overcharge you.

I always assumed that Google monitored the sites that they took ads from to make sure they were legit. I was surprised to learn otherwise. saved me from dealing with the headache of canceling my credit card and having fradulent charges. One tip to consider while shopping is to use the Firefox extension | Digg it | reddit | StumbleUpon |

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    2 Comments For This Post

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