State Sues Unclaimed Money Site After Finding It Told Wile E. Coyote He Had Unclaimed Money

from the batman-too dept

Pennsylvania is suing a website that promised to help people get access to unclaimed money they were owed after investigators determined that the site was convincing people to pay $24.95 for a membership by telling them they had unclaimed money, no matter who they were. Investigators used the scientific method of testing whether Spiderman, Batman and Wile E. Coyote had unclaimed money. After discovering that all three were told they did (on a free search, details only available if you paid), they decided that the site was perhaps being less than honest with users.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Mike C., Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 9:40am

    Scary thought...

    And we'll see big media with their copyright/trademark lawsuit against the state of PA in 3...2...1...

    Personally, I don't know what's worse...that the thought was one of my first when I saw the names used in the search or that I may not be wrong.

     

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  2.  
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    Rumplestiltskin, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:04am

    Me Too!

    Aparently, I, Rumple Stiltskin have unclaimed money as well. Sign me up.

     

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  3.  
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    Erik, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:08am

    google ads for this article...

    As I was reading this article I couldn't help notice that the google ads next to it include such gems as:

    "Want unclaimed money? Just by clicking buttons. Today only 4.95"

    I think there ought to be a stack of lawsuits insad of just this one in PA.

     

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  4.  
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    Spiderman, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:10am

    Damn... I am a victim of identity theft...

    Someone has attempted to clain my unclaimed money.

     

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  5.  
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    Steve R. (profile), Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:19am

    On-Going Scam

    The internet has given us unprecedented power in being able to do research. On the downside, the "fake" hits that are nothing more than marketing ploys. When I did a look-up on my grandmother, a link popped up announcing the availability of her personal "diary".

    It would be nice if these dubious hits could be filtered out. When I search for a product, I would like to see a real review, not a phony review that is a disguised sales pitch. But then we get into the slippery slope issue of what constitutes "good" versus "bad" information. Oh well!

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:22am

    The funny thing is, I bet you somewhere in the United States, some dipshit has actually changed his name to Wile E. Coyote and is now enraged at the ridicule being poured upon him...

    Should this be a lawsuit though or a federal fraud case?

     

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  7.  
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    Rob, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:23am

    Somewhere...

    one Wile E. Coyote now knows he has unclaimed money, and just saved himself $24.95

     

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  8.  
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    James, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:26am

    It is a scam

    My Grandfather is actually on the list in California for unclaimed property. Some old PG&E stock payout worth like 20 bucks.

    I did a search on that site and it did not return my grandfathers entry.

    It did however return a listing for my uncle (same whole name, and my family is one of two in so cal with my last name, and for sure the only ones in Chula Vista).

    I am thinking it just does a public records search.

     

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  9.  
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    Jake, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:30am

    Thanks Mike. Best laugh I've had all day.

     

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  10.  
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    Ima Fish, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:32am

    Re: Damn... I am a victim of identity theft...

    Spiderman or Spider-Man?

     

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  11.  
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    Cory, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 10:39am

    State Sites

    What gets me is the fact that most, if not all states, have websites that allow you to do the same searches completely for free. They even tell you how to go about claiming your money.

     

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  12.  
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    Fox, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 11:03am

    Re: State Sites

    What gets me is the fact that most, if not all states, have websites that allow you to do the same searches completely for free. They even tell you how to go about claiming your money.

    And, there are sites that charge for tax forms that anyone can download for free by going to irs.gov.

    Circuit City's website has lower prices for many items than you'll find in store.

    It's like a tax for being stupid.

     

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  13.  
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    Lucretious, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 11:31am

    The funny thing is, I bet you somewhere in the United States, some dipshit has actually changed his name to Wile E. Coyote and is now enraged at the ridicule being poured upon him...

    I'm thinking how funny would it be that some drug dealer set up several dummy accounts with just those names used and there is several thousands dollars sitting there unclaimed......

     

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  14.  
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    Bob, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 11:35am

    While your at it...

    While your at it send tax money to the govenment and they'll protect and serve you.

    hmmm... 24.95 doesn't seem so bad anymore

     

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  15.  
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    Charlie Potatoes, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 11:47am

    spiderman--spider-man

    It's two different guys.. Spiderman is the Jewish one. you know.. Irving J. Spiderman...

     

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  16.  
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    Charlie, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 12:25pm

    It wouldn't surprise me if people used these as fictitious names on various accounts and ended up with unclaimed funds due to the fictional characters that nobody could claim.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 12:31pm

    Someone check Spiderpig.... ha ha

     

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  18.  
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    Drew, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 1:33pm

    Not a bad scam.

    I mean, I'm a fairly intelligent, tech savvy guy. I searched for myself and there I was, approximate age and hometown were correct. And I was half tempted to find out where I had unclaimed money.

    Hell, if they could *guarantee* that I actually had unclaimed money, I'd probably pay em. But more than likey they just found my name in the public record somewhere and threw it in there.

     

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  19.  
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    ME, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 2:05pm

    Don't go there even if they say you are due money. My father told me one day that the state owed me $200 and to check it out, this was before they charged you money. I had to enter my name and e-mail address to see what money they had, They said it was two unclaimed checks and sent me to a page to print out a form to mail to them to get my money. I filled out the form and printed it but never sent it out. Since then my e-mail address has been flooded with spam all addressed to my full name and home address, witch I never had used on any web site. Now today I had a scam charge on my phone bill from ildtelecom. I called them to ask what this was and they told me that I signed up for their service on the Internet using that e-mail address. Of course I never did sign up there.

     

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  20.  
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    Prodiem, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 2:26pm

    Actually trust the Government for once

    This is one of those cases where I can say I only trust the Government. It's cumbersome, but relatively safe, I don't have to worry excessively about spam, identity theft, etc.

     

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  21.  
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    pay to get, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 3:05pm

    Pay 24.95 to get your unclaimed funds of 4.95.

     

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  22.  
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    Flightless Speedius, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 5:10pm

    Hey, I could see Wile E. getting being on the list. After all the defective junk he's been sold by Acme, there's probably *something* coming from a class-action lawsuit. Or just a refund check that wasn't delivered to his lair (because he blew it up or something).

    Of course, he could probably just check with the State of Arizona for free...

     

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  23.  
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    Flightless Speedius, Apr 3rd, 2008 @ 5:11pm

    Hey, I could see Wile E. being on the list. After all the defective junk he's been sold by Acme, there's probably *something* coming from a class-action lawsuit. Or just a refund check that wasn't delivered to his lair (because he blew it up or something).

    Of course, he could probably just check with the State of Arizona for free...

     

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  24.  
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    R.H., Apr 4th, 2008 @ 12:30am

    The REAL Wile E. Coyote

    My curiosity got the best of me, as it does at times, so I visited zabasearch.com to do a name search. Lo and behold, I found a Mr. Wile E. Coyote who lives in Huntsville, Alabama. Full home address and telephone number. I knew there was probably someone but seriously?

     

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  25.  
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    Tom, Oct 12th, 2008 @ 4:13am

    Not a scam, but a real problem!

    The following does not relate to people being scammed, but to actual problems with the official/state databases that list unclamed money.

    You should not limit yourself to searching strictly by last name. The databases have some interesting quirks, which is a result of the proverbial “garbage in – garbage out” phenomenon. Try searching by first name, middle name, titles (i.e. Mr, Mr., (note period) Mrs, Mrs., (note period) Estate, Est, ITF (stands for In Trust For), FBO (for benefits of), EXEC, EXECUTRIX, THE, DECD, DECEASED, TRUST, TTEE, TRUSTEE, JR, JR., (note period) SR, MISS, PSFS, (don’t know what that stands for but it’s some legal abbreviation), ESCROW, II, III, IV, PHD, DMD, DDS, DR, DR., (note period), ETAL, AND, ATTY, ATTY., (note period) ASSOC, ASSOC., (note period) CR, (CR is legal term for Creditor). If you are a “Mc” something, try searching by the “MC” only in the last name field, or if you are a “MCC” something (i.e. “McCool”) you might try searching by “MCC”. I would suggest only using the last name box in your search quest unless you are searching a name that comes up with over 400 hits in the database.

     

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  26.  
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    spiderman, May 26th, 2009 @ 4:12pm

    There is a free game with Spiderman in it called Mugen

    You know there is a free Spiderman game for the pc? The game has Spiderman, Carnage, Venom and more characters from Marvel, X-men, Justice League, and more. It is called MUGEN.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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