Web Sites Offering Government Grant Money Are Bogus

Mar 17, 2009 | Posted in Fraud Alerts

Con artists are creating phony Web sites that promise government grants for just about anything and because it is a "grant, the money is free and never has to be repaid."

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA), Better Business Bureau, and the Federal Trade Commission have received numerous complaints from people who took the bait. A spokesperson for the CFA says the Web sites are being advertised on search engines and social networking sites, portrayed as part of the government’s stimulus package.

The scammers even create bogus blogs, to tout and drive traffic to their sites. One blog tells how a young woman got $12,000 from the government to start her own business. She urges readers to get their share of the “free money” by visiting a Web site.

“Don’t fall for it,” warns Eileen Harrington, acting director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “There is no money in the stimulus package to send out individual checks to people.”

The Federal government does legitimately give out billions of dollars in grant money every year. Most of these grants either help students pay for college or are for clearly defined reasons, such as research or charitable work. Information can be found at free government Web sites, such as: