Google Finally Goes After Google Money Tree Scam Advertisers.

by on July 3, 2009

The method that I found out about this is a little odd, but I’m kind of glad in a way.

A few weeks ago, I received some Adsense credit from a hosting account I had opened and decided to place some ads promoting the Electron Plumber.  I used one of the more popular keywords we were getting traffic from at the time, basically a bunch of different variations on the “Los Angeles Tribune News Scam”.  Anyone actually looking at this site should recognize that we work hard to call out and warn people against such scams, not promote them at all.

For the first few weeks I was getting 10-20 hits a day on the ads, all at a really really low rate since it I had a high quality score with my content and it wasn’t a keyword that had any competition.

Then last week I noticed that I stopped getting ANY ad hits, that overnight my quality score had dropped from the highest number to the lowest number.

Now today in the mail I get this:

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.

As noted in our Terms and Conditions, Google reserves the right to terminate advertisements for any reason. To view our Terms and Conditions, please visit

We appreciate your cooperation.

Google Inc. 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway Mountain View, CA 94043

You have received this mandatory email service announcement to update you about important changes to your AdWords product or account.

Which is actually really great in one respect, that Google has finally decided to try to clean these scammers off of Adwords.  But it kind of sucks in another resepect, that my adwords account was suspended.  I wrote back to them that it was a mistake, that I never advertised such scams but rather warned people against them (long before Google did anything about them I might add), please come take a look at this site and reinstate my account.

I’ll keep you posted on what happens…

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Chuck Turner July 4, 2009 at 7:45 pm

Hey plumber – great news that Google Adwords are FINALLY taking action against the people that promoted these scams – if only they had done this BEFORE tens of thousands of people got scammed! On the other hand – that sucks that you are an innocent victim of this clampdown. Anyone spending 5 seconds on your site can see that you EXPOSE these scams and warn people about them rather than promote them!

Seems like you are not the only one though, see:

Hope you get this cleared up – anyone who DID promote these scams on adwords should get a lifetime ban on using adwords (and I hope Facebook, Yahoo, MSN and other networks ban them too!) BUT they (Adwords, etc) should be able to tell the difference between a flog/fake news site or direct link to these scammy offers and a site which is genuinely exposing them!!

Also see what Aaron Wall said about this:

Hope you get this sorted out and Google doesn’t punish the innocent when trying to deal
with the guilty.

Chuck Turner July 4, 2009 at 7:54 pm

By the way, I just did a Google search on the keyword phrase Google Money Tree and at least 8 advertisers have ads running, including one ( for a Twitter Money Tree believe it or not! No idea if that’s a scam or not but they could not have chosen a worse name as anything which has XXX Money Tree as the name has scam written all over it just by association. But anyway, point is why are THOSE advertisers still allowed tor un their ads??

El Plumber (admin) July 4, 2009 at 8:02 pm

Good question Chuck, I suspect that they don’t have anything that locks down a particular advertisement phrase, but maybe after someone complains about the ad they take action. It’s entirely possible that my ad was “reported” by the owner of the Los Angeles News Tribune fake site whose keywords I was target.

Luckily I had just created the Adwords account and only had one other ad running (a locally targeted ad for a local private school I volunteer at), so it’s not that big of a deal. But I hate to think Google has it in for my email address and site because of it.

netmeg July 5, 2009 at 12:59 pm

Send a tweet to @AdWordsProSarah on twitter; she might be able to help with your account if you want it restored.

Sophie July 5, 2009 at 3:08 pm

So glad to hear They are finally doing something Aboutit! I personally got scamméd out of over $400 and still bitter!

Lisa July 5, 2009 at 8:11 pm

Thanks for sharing your post about your suspension. My account was suspended for the very same reason. I have never advertised such a thing nor have I ever represented or misrepresented Google in any way, shape or form. As someone vigorously working hard to follow all rules (I’m “still” learning Adwords) I was finally beginning to scratch the surface just a little…..and then this happens. (The link above from Chuck is what I posted on the Adwords Forum over the weekend). From what I’m reading in the forum it’s almost impossible to get reinstated even if you did nothing wrong or did something wrong “unknowingly”. Is this true?

As a “newbie” in this business I’m now finding out why 98% of marketers throw in the towel. I’m about ready to be one of those. Does it ever get any easier or are you all constantly facing road blocks and scams?

Let me know what you find out about your account. The only thing I can figure is that maybe I made a mistake by posting one of my ads on the content network (just started messing around with that)…maybe on a page that supported The Google Money Tree…..? I don’t know….so frustrating.

Like Chuck, I’ve looked up “Google Money Tree” and find it quite odd they are all right there at the top of the search engine. It’s obvious what they are advertising, yet my ads get mistakened for it. I just don’t get it.

Gordon July 6, 2009 at 12:14 pm

My involvement with Google Money Tree began in March. I have not paid the credit card the company, which is CHASE Visa, and they refuse to remove the charge, because they say that the merchant, (Money Tree), will not grant a refund. Therefore, you should also be concerned with the Bank who issues your credit card. I had a problem with another scam where I used an American Express card, and American Express was very prompt in removing the $150.00 charge.

Adrian July 10, 2009 at 1:24 pm

AdWords scams are a big problem on the Internet today and it’s good to see that Google is now doing something about this problem. It’s a shame that inocent parties like you get caught up in the process.

We’ve been following this issues at the AdWords Adviser for a while now. Get the full story here:

pete August 13, 2009 at 6:27 pm

the people running the google scam website show up in whois as:

IntelliPay, Inc.
230 West 400 South
1st Floor
Salt Lake City, UT 84101

i called and asked them how exposed we were to their scams (we don’t operate scams) after my wife put in her address and phone info only and was told a telemarketing call would come. i asked if we would be sold to other telemarketers after telling them to call no more and was told no. they know they’re scammers and are quite shameless about it. if you run afoul of their money stealing practices, call them every 5 minutes and yell at someone until they start listening to you. wasting tons of their time will get you noticed.

Chris G August 26, 2009 at 3:47 am

Man, Plumber…that really sucks. I am very glad to see one of the corporate Giants finally doing something about this epidemic, yet mortified at the same time to them plowing through the innocent protectors of our internet world to accomplish it. It reminds me of the current war in Iraq, and all the innocent civilians that are killed daily to benefit the country as-a-whole. I sincerely hope you get your account reinstated, yet as one other person has already stated, it’s probably unlikely.

I can’t say this loudly enough, not too many times…..”IF IT SOUNDS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, IT MOST-DEFINITELY IS!”

Kaye C September 3, 2009 at 5:22 pm

Looks Like I have possibly been scammed by a “Google Profit House” scam site. My credit card company is taking steps to stop it from being done again after I called and spoke to a rep personally about it. No More “Google” anything at all for me!!!

Antony September 11, 2009 at 2:49 am

Watch for the latest scam technique!

— the sites are set up to look like those Yahoo answer sites. A shill asks a question like “Can you make any $$ with the Google Wealth Connection?”

Many shill responses “Of course, I did, blah, blah blah”. Of course the shilliest answer is “Voted” Best Answer and the “Question” marked Resolved at the end — just like the real Q/A sites.

This one is running on a site called

Doubt its the only domain they are using.


Gordon September 13, 2009 at 2:51 pm

Do NOT trust anything with the Google name attached to it.

Antony September 15, 2009 at 6:21 am

FWIW, I’m seeing “Make big $$$ with Twitter Kits”, “Make big $$$ with Facebook Kits”, “Make big $$$ with Blogs Kits” also.


Phil September 26, 2009 at 3:03 pm

I have looked at a lot of so called systems that appear “too good to be true” and then I remember two things that my dad would say: “If it sounds too good to be true, then It’s probably “NOT” true”! “You won’t get something for nothing”! So, when I see these advertisements, I consider what he always said.

In my opinion, the only way to make an honest dollar on the internet is to sell a needed product. This is why I created my own website, to sell valuable informational cds. There are no scams connected to my site, you simply purchase products that will help to improve your life and that’s it! On one of these cds there are sixteen different e-books, some of which tell how to make money. If you are interested, checkout my website

Antony September 27, 2009 at 2:20 am

Gordon and Phil have the right idea. Yes, you can gain success on Google and the Internet in general. As stated, it ain’t easy. Takes hard work, good ideas, research, originality. No one will give away the secrets to “millions”, but sites like this can give you some tips and do’s and don’ts.

Kaye and Gordon though, please don’t uncategorically shun anything Google — some of us are honest Advertisers and Publishers. You just have to use the brains and intuition that you folks demonstrated in your posts. Just look at any ad, search result, offer skeptically. And know that no one is giving you the road to riches. Read here, read and if you are thinking of buying a product on the Internet, analyse it carefully.


In this dire economy, scammers are pulling out all the stops. I’m mostly confined to a chair in a room with no TV but I overheard a scam that is really pulling out all the stops.

Jeff Paul’s Shortcut to Internet Millions — Do nothing, the $$$ pour in while you sleep once you give your credit card for a “membership”.

This was a long informercial where folks who were down and out a week ago, “took a chance” and are making $100,000.00 USD a week just by doing “nothing”. And your membership gives you everything including the kitchen sink once you sign up and “do nothing” — just sleep in your brand new mansion.

It sounded sickening. Just one more to avoid.

All you can do is educate yourself and follow Phil’s Dad’s wise advise.

Kaye, you’ve already educated yourself by being bilked by slick talkers. That counts! It won’t happen to you again.


Remember, nothing comes easy in this life. Still doesn’t mean Google itself or the Internet doesn’t offer possibilities. You’ve just got to do the work yourself. You know that now.

Good luck all!


Smithensonite October 22, 2009 at 6:49 pm

Google Cash is what i’m looking for , and i was wondering if there was a difference in if u get it free or oay, also on how much to be paid for the kit….i’m hearing different things for different names tho this is mostyl what i’ve heard it called, what else can i find to secure i’m following a good prgram to ensure better growth knbowledge of this fortune, plzzzz help me pliz : )

Dick stir October 29, 2009 at 4:57 pm

Moments before i went through the basic traing site setting up the account
i noticed scam ads on this google cash , by kevin
I quickly contacted the bank and stopped all payments
and had the card replaced new no# ect..
it was a blessing that i could catch this only 1/2 hour in to the training
when backed up by news and television ads you still have to investigate it
before you give your card info .. beware

jay November 19, 2009 at 6:02 pm

i would not blame google for bad advise if you did it without any research well then you are dumb i just got that breaking news from “so called google” and i type in on google to see if it is true and guess what google says it is a scam so why do you blame google for it they tell you it is a scam

Mat September 16, 2010 at 9:30 am

Did you get your account reinstated?

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