Google sues a scammer who uses puppies to trick Internet users

Google has decided to take legal action this Monday, April 11, 2022 against a scammer from Cameroon. This scammer used fake puppy sales to trick Internet users sensitive to the animal cause.

Credits: Unsplash

On the web, scammers reveal ingenuity to trick Internet users and obtain personal data or even bank details to empty your account. There are countless methods developed to catch users in their net. Phishing is obviously particularly popular and there is no shortage of recent examples, such as the campaign targeting Canal+ subscribers or the one targeting WhatsApp users in early April 2022.

Hackers also use popular software like VLC to spread dangerous malware. SMS scams are also very widespread, we remember this scam which targeted holders of vital cards in France. This Monday, April 11, 2022, Google has decided to put an end to the actions of a scammer residing in Cameroon.

Google hunts scammer for ‘puppy scam’

Indeed, the manufacturer has taken legal action against Nche Noel, for having run a vast system of “puppy frauds” online for mainly scam elderly and/or vulnerable characters. To sum up his modus operandi, the accused used a network of fraudulent websites that promised to sell basset hound puppiesAlluring photos and fake customer testimonials to back it up.

In one case, a victim paid $700 over Christmas in the form of an electronic gift card to purchase a puppy. After having paid and sent the gift cards, the accused continued to dangle the victim by asking for the payment of 1500 additional dollars, claiming additional costs for the delivery of the puppy. Of course, the client never received his puppy.

Why did Google decide to take Nche Noel to court? The Mountain View firm accuses him of having conducted a Google Ads campaign to promote its fraudulent sites. In its complaint, Google says AARP, an advocacy group for seniors, alerted the company to this online scam in September 2021.

In November, AARP released a full report detailing the puppy scam, explaining that those responsible were exploiting isolated consumers looking for companionship at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. According to Google, Nche Noel violated the terms of use of several company services (Google Voice, Gmail, Google Ads) by carrying out this scam. The company seeks compensation for damages.

Source: The Verge

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