I’m only going to say this once, because it’s pretty simple:
If you see a banner advertisement that promises to reveal “1 Weird Old Trick” to lose weight (or “1 Weird Old Tip” to achieve anything), you are looking at a scam.
I know you’ve seen these ads. If you’ve looked at the Weather Channel, any of the major news providers, or even your local newspaper’s website, you have. Maybe you’ve even wondered, “So, what’s the weird old trick?”
The weird old trick is this: if you click on the ad, you’ll end up at one of about ten zillion websites that promise free samples of weight loss and other remedies that just don’t work; Acai berries are one of the most common. In ordering your “free” sample, you must provide a credit card number. They’ll start hitting your account with monthly charges soon afterwards. If you try to get them to stop, the phone numbers they provide either won’t work, or you’ll find you get “disconnected” a lot (in other words, whoever’s at the call center just hangs up on you). It’s actually a lot like the old “Google Kit” scam from a while back.
There’s a bright spot in all of this, though. According to a recent article from the Washington Post, the feds are cracking down on this scheme. I’ve already noticed the ads seem to have mostly disappeared. Score one for the good guys!