A copycat website of the Guardian has been scamming readers out of money by placing fraudulent ads for loans.
The remarkably similar domain theguardian.com.uk is a mock up of the usual Guardian website but with an ad for a fictitious loan company Business Grants & Loans. The fraudsters even go as far as penning fake stories with bylines claiming to be real Guardian journalists including money reporter Miles Brignall, giving a positive review to the scammer’s loan site.
The fake article said it was an “expanding company”. It even included a number of falsified comments in the comments section, which of course praise the so called loan company.
Unfortunately one reader has fallen for the ploy, who paid £175 for a loan of £15,000, which she never got.
The Guardian says that the website has now been removed.
“The Guardian immediately asked the internet service provider that hosts the page to take it down.”
We urge anyone visiting The Guardian to double check the URL of the page. The fraudulent address is theguardian.com.uk. The legitimate page is theguardian.com.
While the fake site had been trying to lure people into handing over money, there be have been other malicious ploys at work, approach with caution.