Ripoff Report Shuts Out 'Reputation Management' Hacker

Consumer advocacy website now functioning normally

August 23, 2011

2 Min Read


PHOENIX, Aug. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Ripoff Report recently detected and successfully defeated an ongoing hack of its consumer advocacy website,

Earlier this year, a hacker, promising his customers "reputation management" services, had embedded code into the website to prevent search engines from recognizing certain postings. In some cases, website visitors were misdirected to a false message stating that the posting had been redacted.

A investigation revealed that the hacker had been commissioned by reputation management companies that accepted thousands of dollars in monthly fees from their clients, promising that Ripoff Report postings about the businesses could be removed from search engine results or deleted from the Internet altogether.

Although the hack was effective in interfering with public access to certain postings for several months, the website has been fully restored to normal function and all consumer postings are once again available to search engines and the public without obstruction. website editor Ed Magedson cautions business owners that if a reputation management company makes an offer that seems too good to be true, it probably is. "Any company claiming to remove reports from, is admitting to breaking the law because Ripoff Report does not authorize the removal of reports," says Magedson.

About Ripoff Report is one of the largest and consumer advocacy reporting websites in the United States. Privately owned and operated, it was established by Magedson in December 1998 to enable consumers to post reports detailing their experience with any company or individual within a company. Once a company has been named in a consumer's report, the company may respond by posting a rebuttal. Both reports and rebuttals are posted free of charge, and once submitted they are not removed. Before a report may be submitted, users are required to create an account by providing a valid email address and warrant that any report submitted is truthful and accurate.

Ripoff is comprised of more than 500,000 web pages and is supported, in part, by private contributions. To make a non-tax deductible donation, send a check to: Ripoff Report, P.O. Box 310. Tempe, AZ 85280 or you can make a donation online.

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