** UNCONFIRMED ** Some Credit Cards Or Payment Accounts Tied To Zeek May Be Getting Charged For Subscriptions In Aftermath Of Collapse ** UNCONFIRMED **

UPDATED 12:18 P.M. EDT (U.S.A.) There is a report on the MoneyMakerGroup Ponzi forum today of at least one member of the Zeek Rewards’ “program” getting charged $99 for a monthly renewal:

Here’s how the post read (italics added):

“Your Diamond renewal has been processed
Order Total: 99.00
Order Date: 8/5/2012 6:06:51 PM
Subscription Renewal Date: 7/29/2012
Order Number: [deleted by PP Blog]
This will appear on your statement as ZeekRewards.com.
Thanks!
ZeekSupport

The poster went on to point out that the “[d]ates are off though.”

And the poster also asked, “Anyone else get this? Probably old renewal only processed now, knowing how slow they’ve been.”

Last week, the state of Maine cautioned Zeek members to contact their service-providers to cancel Zeek billings. Here is the statement from Maine’s Office of Securities and Bureau of Financial Institutions in its entirety (italics added):

Maine’s Office of Securities and Bureau of Financial Institutions today alerted consumers that federal regulators recently took action to stop an alleged massive online “profit sharing” Ponzi scheme that appears to have attracted Maine investors. The site, ZeekRewards.com, was placed into receivership and had its assets frozen by a North Carolina District Court on August 17 following an action by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for securities fraud against the site, as well as a related entity, Rex Venture Group, LLC, and internet marketer Paul R. Burks of Lexington, N.C.

According to the SEC’s complaint, ZeekRewards and defendants raised $600 million dollars from more than one million internet customers and investors nationwide and overseas through the website, ZeekRewards.com, which began operating in January, 2011. Customers were offered several ways to earn money through the ZeekRewards profit-sharing program, which the SEC alleges was marketed in violation of federal law. ZeekRewards operated a classic Ponzi scheme by paying the first wave of investors with new funds solicited from subsequent investors using false and misleading statements.

“Some Maine financial institutions reported receiving requests for assistance from customers who invested in ZeekRewards.com, so, unfortunately, we have good reason to believe there may be a number of Maine victims of this scheme,” said Bureau Superintendent Lloyd LaFountain III. LaFountain encouraged anyone who purchased an interest or otherwise invested in ZeekRewards through a monthly subscription or other recurring payment plan administered by their financial institution to contact the institution immediately to make sure future payments are not deducted from the customer’s account.

The receiver in this case has identified $225 million in investor funds in 15 foreign and domestic financial institutions, but is still currently identifying assets and victims of the scheme. Securities Administrator Judith M. Shaw urged investors to stay abreast of developments by monitoring the receiver’s website: www.zeekrewardsreceivership.com. Shaw pointed to another resource for investors, an SEC site to keep investors apprised of updates, www.sec.gov/divisions/enforce/claims/zekerewards.htm.

“Scam artists rely on the internet as a reliable forum for perpetuating fraud,” noted Shaw. “The fact that this scheme reportedly pulled in over one million investors worldwide underscores the importance of thoroughly investigating any kind of profit-making venture before investing, regardless of how the venture is styled or presented The Office of Securities stands ready to assist all Maine citizens with objective information so that investors can make informed investment decisions.”

Last Updated: August 31, 2012 12:33 AM

Visit the webpage of the Maine Office of Securities and Bureau of Financial Institutions.

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11 Responses to “** UNCONFIRMED ** Some Credit Cards Or Payment Accounts Tied To Zeek May Be Getting Charged For Subscriptions In Aftermath Of Collapse ** UNCONFIRMED **”

  1. No surprise, as some PR machine apparently was still running on automatic. This came through Google search:

    Zeek Rewards Offers Several Ways To Earn On Retail And …
    Melodika.net (press release)-6 hours ago
    Tuesday, 04 September 2012. Los Angeles, CA – Zeek Rewards is a website that offers several different ways to earn a profit to its various levels of members…

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  3. PP keeps us so well informed about the “Zeekish”, “Triplerish”, “Mannish” and “Bowdainish” hucksters of the world that it’s sometimes easy to overlook the septic level of deception, fraud, misinformation and bone-chilling incompetence running amok even in the “legitimate” financial world these days.

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/consumer/Capital-One-to-pay-140-million-in-refunds.html

    As Spencer Tracy opined in his last grand speech in the classic “Judgement at Nuremberg”, we can almost expect sadistic, twisted monsters to prey on the population, but where is it all headed when “good people” – and in this case traditionally “trusted”, “authentic” and “legitimate” institutions – begin adopting the same moral and ethical terpitude as a matter of policy?

    To be sure and without discussion or debate, the Manns and Bowdains of the world need to be rounded up and punished with Biblical severity, but at some level their schemes and promises have the stink of fraud already on them even as their victims are being pitched. It requires – at some level – desperation and aimlessness in potential victims to be seduced by their promises.

    But your blood can run twice as cold when you realize that something as pedestrian as merely possessing a major credit card (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, etc.) – something the vast majority of ordinary consumers possess and hardly, in and of itself, evidence of financial desperation or supreme gullibility, can expose you to predatory fee, marketing and payment fraud.

    The point of my blather is simply this…

    You don’t have to fall down the Rabbit Hole to find yourself in Wonderland. Wonderland has backed up from the depths of the Rabbit Hole like sewage backing up into your house from a bloated septic tank, and you are sorely mistaken if you believe that even the “legitimate” financial services industry isn’t septic in its own right.

    It isn’t necessary anymore – and of course it hasn’t been necessary for a long time now – to go prospecting for riches and promises among sharks whose tales of wealth don’t even pass the giggle test.

    The real, most insidious danger might not be the termites in Internet Ponziland. Internet Ponziland itself is only one of the bigger nests. Wall Street, Corporate board rooms, Banks, Lenders, Insurance companies, Credit Card providers and “mainstream”, “legitimate” investment firms have, can and will screw you in a New York minute if the big players can put one more Mercedes in their driveways.

    You don’t need Elmer Gantry to blow into town anymore to fleece the desperate and gullible with carnival flair. All you have to do now is get up on Sunday and go to church. It’s there waiting.

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  4. The so-called “predatory fees” are relatively minor compared to thousands, perhaps TENS OF THOUSANDS lost in the Zeek Ponzi.

    Wall Street, at least, is regulated (somewhat) and there’s lot less room to hide under the limelight of all the news coverage.

    Not saying it’s good, just that discussing Wall Street’s “malfesance” doesn’t really deal with the “underworld”, so to speak, but is sort of a derail, much like the people who keep bringing up “why don’t you go after Social Security”.

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  5. K. Chang – Interesting that you see much of the primary architecture – and many of the primary architects – of the 2008 near-fatal collapse as a “derail”, and suggest that Wall Street “malfeasance” has nothing to do – ethically or otherwise – with the financially fraudulent “underworld”.

    “You’re going to get a little fraud here and there” as a price-of-capitalism rationale is precisely the kind of trains-running-on-time argument that allowed the whole thing to blacken with corruption while no one was paying attention to begin with.

    The worst thing the anti-scam, anti-fraud, anti-hucksterism community can do is to start compartmentalizing global financial crime into neat, easily managed categories that distance your so-called “underworld” from vast frauds taking place in the “legitimate” financial services sector.

    The gov didn’t see Capital One fraudulently relieving its cardholders of $150M as a “relatively minor” offense, and it’s interesting that you do.

    Maybe since these were the “relatively good guys”, which is to say not from the seamy “underworld”, commiting financial fraud then their offense was “relatively minor”, as opposed to Andy and Freddy who are “relatively bad guys” and thus commit “relatively major” frauds. You think Cap One is a one-off? You think 2008 was a one-off? You need to get out more.

    Don’t liken me to folks crying “why don’t you go after Social Security”. Not only did I not say that, I didn’t say anything resembling that.

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  6. From out of the depth of financial hell comes none other than Robert G. does he bring with him his side kick and fellow schemer LF?

    Seems he must to have spent his time getting himself an education of sorts since he using all them there big words and speaking with great authority that I am surely lost in this great expanse of nothing that was said. If’n he could only hear himself speak he would be a hollorin and sceam’n that us ‘ins are not listening to anything he be a say’n.

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  7. Jack Arons: From out of the depth of financial hell comes none other than Robert G.

    No, Jack. You are WAY off base here. IrritableBob is one of the good guys.

    Jack Arons: If’n he could only hear himself speak he would be a hollorin and sceam’n that us ‘ins are not listening to anything he be a say’n.

    You are free to embrace or reject any opinion published on this Blog. As noted above, I just rejected your opinion, which included a conspiracy theory that Irritable Bob is your nemesis Robert G.

    You know, Jack, lots of people — IrritableBob included — hold the principled view that HYIPs, etc., are ruinous — but so are out-of-control profiteers on Wall Street and that the sheriff needs to go in and clean up Dodge in a way that will get the permanent attention of Dodge and its apologists.

    I’d bet if you took say, 30 seconds, to examine your own views, you might just find that you’re actually in agreement with IrritableBob.

    Patrick

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  8. Admin:

    In most cases you are correct that I am in agreement with some. But please explain how IB is one of the good guys. We can not change Wall Street and that is a fact, but many of us can change what is happening in the HYIP’s world. The constant postings made on this blog and others brings to the public’s attention what dastardly deeds await them should they fall prey to these get rich quick schemes may save a few but not all.

    To your credit and the many other Ponzi fighters Zeek and others have fallen. Wall Street is another matter that neither you nor I can make any real difference in.

    Just like SS which charges me for medicare monthly something I already paid for having worked for 45 years. Each paycheck there was a deduction for an insurance that I still have to pay for and covers nothing. So just like Wall Street it is something neither you nor I can change.

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  9. All we can do in inform the public.

    IrritableBob wrote:

    Interesting that you see much of the primary architecture – and many of the primary architects – of the 2008 near-fatal collapse as a “derail”

    Seen such tactics from Ponzi proponents. Maybe my conclusion was premature, but it’s frequently Ponzi proponents, when criticism about their pet schemes are raised, to bring up “everything is a Ponzi” red herring, and frequent targets are Social Security, Federal Reserve, IMF, and of course, Wall Street.

    If you didn’t mean that as a derail, then I apologize. I just don’t see the point in talking about bank fees which are bad, but not quite illegal, vs. something like Ponzi and pyramid schemes, which are clearly illegal.

    Unless you think we need to tackle the “easy stuff” before we tackle the criminal stuff… But that’s be presumption on my part.

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  10. SS is not a Ponzi scheme. It’s not even a pyramid. In the final analysis, SS is a social contract morally, and a tax legally. Whether you agree with it or not, it is legal, and not a Ponzi.

    SS has transparency. We know how it works, how the money flows, who benefits, etc. Ponzi’s are built around fraud and deception first and foremost.

    Wall Street may be ‘rigged for insiders’ but that’s a cop out. Many have gone to jail trying to beat the system. Some legitimate institutions have lost money, i.e. Facebook. I don’t see anyone wanting to rush to donate to the financial institutions that got eviscerated on Facebook stock after the IPO. Just because people can cheat and it is harder to win, doesn’t mean that it is a Ponzi or illegal or immoral.

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  11. I agree with Irritable Bob, and don’t blame him for being irritable. It is not sufficient to say “We can not change Wall Street and that is a fact, ” In fact it is essential that we do call for a change in the conduct of those in the financial institutions, by regulation or other means, in order to avoid another debacle like the economic crisis that has had it fall out on the lives of citizens all over the world.

    It is interesting to examine the common factors between the illegal HYIP and ponzi “industry” and the excesses of the financial institutions which operate within a structure of legality. It would appear that they share a common factor of personal greed and enrichment. As long as we excuse the malfeasance of the legitimate financial world and do not demand accountability, we condone a culture where the fraudsters are merely taking the scenario to the next level and dont even bother to operate within the law.

    Just saying. lol

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