Google Cracks Down and Bans Adwords CPA Scams

One of the most popular offers on CPA networks has been the Google Money Tree scam and others like it. Google is cracking down on these scams and banning Adwords accounts that advertise them. I wonder if the networks are warning affiliates these programs can get them banned from Adwords. That could kill a lot of income for a lot of affiliates!

Google Money Tree and all these other similar shady programs promise a quick and easy way to make money with Google Adwords then continue to rebill with hidden charges. The FTC just busted Google Money Tree and many others, so I don’t even know if they are still in business. But in spite of the bust and Google banning accounts, I still see disguised GMT Adwords ads up today.

The letter Google is sending out to problem accounts reads:

“It’s come to our attention that you have submitted ads that promote Google Money Tree or ads that promote a misrepresented affiliation with Google. Due to multiple complaints from our users and publishers, we’ve made the decision not to accept these ads.

This is a notification that your account has been suspended due to the submission of these ads and your ads will no longer run on Google. Please note that future accounts you open will also be suspended.”

More at the SearchEngineWatch Blog. Finally, Google Suspends Accounts Running Adword Scam Programs

UPDATE: Just found a post over at Zac’s blog about lots of affiliates having their Adwords accounts banned. My Google Adwords Account Was Banned!

5 Comments on Google Cracks Down and Bans Adwords CPA Scams

  1. 4 Words: Don’t Advertise On Google

    There’s an enormous amount of traffic out there for these offers. Stop killing yourself by chasing 5% margins on overpriced advertising.

  2. Long overdue. I particularly like the future accounts you open will be suspended. I guess this will be traced via credit card name or number. For genuine affiliate marketers, this is good news getting the scams out and leaving far better quality on the page .

  3. Mark,
    Hmm… so you’re OK with Google keeping your full CC number and using it to track what else you use it for are you?

    Storing full CC numbers on your own systems is against the T&C of most, if not all, merchant account agreements for the merchant – which would include Google in this context.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Google are doing some sort of cross checking of other data – names, emails, IP addresses, etc – on the various accounts they offer, but they shouldn’t be doing it with CC numbers. If they are, I hope they get well and truly busted for it.

  4. I was also banned recently, having never promoted ‘money tree’, or actually even knowing what it was until I researched it.

    Google support is a waste of time regarding the issue. . in fact, after emailing them several times for advice and an explanation of my ban, I have come to the conclusion that they are robots, not human.

    I find it ironic that one of Google’s core principles is that the “Internet should be a democracy”. What rubbish! I have never experienced such an autocratic system!

    Unfortunately, it seems that Google have now made far too much money, (from Internet marketing revenue no less) that they now consider themselves above mere mortals (especially Adwords publishers), and somewhere just below God, literally, thanks to their very own spy satellite . . BTW that thing and ‘Google Earth’ has got to be one of the biggest security risks of all time. . terrorists, criminals, weirdos can now have instant access to geography, topography, military and government locations and your backyard at the flick of a mouse. Google’s defence’ to this is that the aerial information displayed via Google Earth is easily available to anyone flying over the area in a plane .. . er, hello, how many of us have our own planes? The odd terrorist may be lucky enough have his own plane but if he flew over a military base, or government building, in it he would be much more visible than he is from behind his laptop dontcha think?!

    Apart from that, they have a great search engine. Maybe the Google Directors should do a search, via ‘Google Chrome’ of course, and see just how many people they have wrongly ousted from Adwords. The words ‘hands’, ‘biting’ & ‘feeds you’ spring to mind.

  5. Mel, sorry to hear you were banned. Hopefully you can get reinstated or something.

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