Reputation Changer: Scam Reports, When Untrue, Can Destroy Businesses

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A recent Los Angeles Times article rounds up a recent litany of scams, both online and off—but some companies are accused of fraudulent activity erroneously, leading them to seek the services of companies like Reputation Changer.

A recent article from the Los Angeles Times gives the impression that, in this day and age, scams are a dime a dozen. The article rounds up a number of “alleged cons, frauds and schemes” from both the online and offline realms, exhorting consumers to exercise caution. In particular, the article notes one online scam, in which illegitimate escrow services offer their services to consumers who have participated in online auctions. The Internet Crime Complaint Center has flagged these phony escrow services for taking consumers’ money but never sending the promised merchandise. The article does an important service by alerting consumers to some real and potential frauds that exist—but according to one company, Reputation Changer, scam reports and allegations are not always to be trusted, and sometimes they only end up doing harm to legitimate businesses.

Reputation Changer has reacted to the Los Angeles Times article with a new press statement. In the company’s press statement, CEO Cliff Stein says that online scam allegations are a slippery slope. “It is certainly true that, thanks to the anonymity afforded by the Internet, there are plenty of scams out there, and it’s vital for the consumer to be cautious,” he observes. “That online anonymity is ultimately a two-edged sword. Not only does it mean there are many scams, but also many false scam reports. A lot of legitimate and reputable businesses are smeared, attacked with scam allegations when they have done nothing wrong.”

According to Reputation Changer, scam accusations can come from a wide array of sources. “We have worked with many companies that have been subject to these outrageous accusations,” Stein affirms. “Sometimes, the scam rumors stem from consumers who simply were not pleased with the products or services. In other cases, however, they come from angry or bitter employees, or from business competitors.”

This underscores an important truth, Stein says—namely, that no company is immune to online scam allegations. “A lot of companies operate under the assumption that, if they treat consumers fairly and do not misrepresent themselves, there is no way this could happen to them,” he notes.

“However, scam allegations are not always based in fact. That means they can besiege any brand or business.”

Stein goes on to say that the damage done by these allegations of wrongdoing are potentially devastating. “It is no exaggeration to say that false reports of fraudulent activity, when circulated on the Internet, can lead to a business’ demise, or at the very least lead to diminished sales and lost customers,” says Stein. “Additionally, when word gets out that a business is running a scam—whether those allegations have any basis in reality or not—they often encourage clients to request refunds and chargebacks. Bottom line: Scam accusations can destroy a business’ reputation and lead to a whole litany of problems.”

At Reputation Changer, scam reports do not have to be a death sentence, however. Stein says that his company has worked to help many brands bounce back from these reputation disasters. “A lot of companies have come to us seeking to clear their names, and we are passionate for helping them do exactly that,” he enthuses. “The bad news is that we cannot prevent people from posting these scam allegations. However, we can seek to render them non-issues.”

Stein explains that his company practices a form of online suppression. “We inundate search engines with content that presents our client’s brand in a positive light,” he says. “So when a consumer searches for that brand, he or she sees the positive listings, while the unwanted search results are pushed out of the way.”


Reputation Changer was founded in 2009 by a devoted team of online marketing and sales experts. Now led by CEO Cliff Stein, the company has grown to include a large team of content writers, social media experts, and account executives. Reputation Changer’s vision is for helping companies and individuals protect themselves against online defamation, and ultimately to have some control over how they are portrayed on the Web. Reputation Changer has worked with small companies, Fortune 500 brands, and private citizens.

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Cliff Stein
Reputation Changer LLC
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