They say it takes money to make money. In this case, the scammers TAKE your money to MAKE their money. Home Income System is a work from home scam using the Shark Tank brand and images to market their scheme. DON’T BE FOOLED!
It wouldn’t be a normal week at CelebriCHECK without seeing the Shark Tank brand stolen to sell the newest snake oil. What makes this scam interesting is that the product is touting “behind the scenes” insights from the Sharks rather than faking on-screen endorsements. This approach is clever because the scam victim feels like they have insider information from highly successful and wealthy entrepreneurs. Couple that “secret intel” with a scam that sells itself as an employment opportunity worth “over a million dollars a year,” and you’ve got a hook. Selling scams is a dirty business, but it’s even worse when you target a financially desperate audience willing to jump at any opportunity, even if it’s clearly too good to be true.
When I (Zach) write posts for CelebriCHECK, my modus operandi is sarcasm and belittling the efforts of the scammer. This post is going to be different. The Home Income System scam, and others like it, target a particularly vulnerable group of victims – those financially insecure and eager for work opportunities. So, we’ll look at how a fairly obvious scam can so easily capture victims.
1: Successful people endorse the scam and a reason to “buy in” – Stealing star power
Our scammers start by setting the mood. They fabricate endorsements by successful people to both build credibility and get the victim afraid of his or her current situation. In this case, we see Barbara, Daymond, Kevin, Lori, Mark, and Robert – the Sharks. Our fictitious article reporter meets with them after shooting for an episode of Shark Tank and they rave about the scam product (Home Income System). Not only do our fabriquoted celebrities introduce the product, they also remark on a reason that everyone should follow their lead and “buy in” to the scam.
2: Using fear/scarcity as a sales tool – Encourage irrationality
Once the scammers have built credibility (or attempted to), they try to encourage knee-jerk decision making. Rational thinking keeps people from becoming victims, so scammers need to inspire fear-based and impulsive decisions. The goal is to shift your brain from “this is too good to be true” to “this may have some risk, but I can’t afford NOT to try.”
With Home Income System, the scammers mechanism for fear is impending economic collapse that will leave people bankrupt unless they have large cash reserves. Their message: act now or suffer financially forever.
The second prong of the fear/scarcity attack comes by making the victim feel like there are not enough opportunities or cash to go around. These scammers accomplish this by loosely tying in “the rich get richer” and corporate greed will suffocate you ideas. Essentially, the wealthy are hording money, so get your share before it’s all gone.
3: YOU can have it all, and it’s EASY – The scam is the ONLY way to avoid the disaster
Now the scammers can sell hard. Money is scarce. The economy is failing. Smart entrepreneurs like the Sharks trust the scheme. YOU, the victim, are perfectly qualified to get rich in under a year. What?!
At this point, the scammers rely on developed irrational thinking to answer the victims questions without answering any REAL questions. They throw together business terms and promises to make the victim believe that they’re getting answers. Some of the key phrases include:
- regular people can make WAY MORE than $100,000 in a year.
- This is THE BEST possible way for average people to protect themselves and thrive in the rough times ahead.
- The absolute best part is something called “liquidity”.
- Not only do you get paid VERY well, thousands of dollars per week or better, but you get paid in cash…
- If a person can use a computer well enough to read the news online, or write and send an email, then they can use the internet to create life changing incomes.
The scammers never answer the one key question a rational victim would be asking: What is the job? They tell you it’s super easy. They tell you you get paid cash every week. They tell you that they system itself is the product of a stay-at-home mother who wants to “share her secrets.”
When the victim clicks through to the offer itself, they’re greeted with a video that reinforces the idea that it’s super easy. The founder of the Home Income System (NOTE: this is not the same stay-at-home mom the article describes, but a charismatic young man) explains that buying the system gives you the tools and support to make your fortune.
This scam relies on the victim purchasing a “package” that offers the miracle solution that will make the victim rich. The contents of the package hardly matter, as this is a scam, but the gist is that the victim posts links on a click-bait website. What’s far more important is what the victim is agreeing to when they commit.
THE INCOME DISCLAIMER: After a friendly introduction in the disclaimer about wealth being the product of commitment and a general “your-mileage-may-vary” statement, they have “The Legal-ese Version of the Disclaimer.” In typical scam fashion, the truth is buried in this fine print. Here the scammers include clauses about their testimonials not being verified for accuracy and state that their product cannot be held liable for having any impact on the overall success of your business. BASICALLY: This package is fluff. Your success is the result of your know-how and efforts. You cannot hold the scammers responsible for selling fluff.
COST: $99. Unlike subscription services, the victim is paying for a password to access crappy online resources. The fee is one time, but the scammers can encourage further costs through “advanced consultations” and access to even more crappy materials.