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Snakeman
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Thanks all for your comments.
To John, Talking scammers, I can assure you that there are plenty of snakes in the snake business and my OP was not intended to attack SEO people at large.
By way of example, 7 people died last year from snake bite who had completed government accredited venomous snake handling courses over the previous 2 years. All died as a result of being taught dangerous methods by people who should never have been licensed to teach in the first place.
When four people died installing pink batts, we got a Royal Commission, but with these SEVEN snake bite deaths (after others) …. Nothing!
However SEO is a matter of interest to most people here. Snakes are not.
Hence my original post.
On a side issue I inadvertently uncovered a raft of scams this week online when I went to a website to have an advert removed that was using our registered trademarks to promote a serial infringer’s business, complete with backlinks (to make them usurp us for our trademarks).
What I thought was a single humble advert, morphed into a network of over 350 domains and web properties owned by the one person and I found that numerous other rights owners had similarly been violated (mainly in the motel accommodation business). Using a little online detective work, the owner of the domains was found on the Gold Coast at her private address and phoned.
She was rude and hung up on me when I raised the matter. This is apparently standard for her and I also found out that the ACCC had been told about her many times by others in formal written complaints and that they told the complainants that they didn’t investigate small businesses for online scams. This I knew from my own complaints about an online scammer in our business way back in 2007.
In all, all I can say is tread very carefully with all web-based businesses and not just SEO-type ones.
All the best