Off-Grid.Net readers have finally helped us unmask the culprits behind the Magniwork magnetic generator scam.
The fraudsters have been swindling gullible buyers with a $50 DIY guide to building a magnetic power generator which claims to produce free energy. Physicists and energy experts have dismissed the product as nonsense.
The brains behind the operation is a shady East European scientist and entrepreneur known as Igor Dobreski. His main accomplice and web-master is a slightly more engaging but still dishonest character called Vojdan Vrcakovski. But their accomplice, the third, the most powerful and most surprising member of this criminal troika turns out to be the internet itself. How so, you might ask?
Dobreski and Vrcakovski, started selling their ‘guide’ over the internet in Spring this year from their web-site at Magniwork.com. Describing their device as a “perpetual motion machine”, they claim that: “Using our easy-to-follow guide,you will be able create a Magnetic Power Generator which creates absolutely free energy.”
And as if that wasn’t enough they go on to boast that the device “will be able to solve the energy crisis.”
Off-Grid asked them to explain their product and justify themselves but neither responded to our e mails. However their web page modestly refers to the device as “a perpetual motion machine.” They go on to promise that “you can eliminate your power bill by50% or even completely, depending on how you implement the Magniwork generator.”
At this point most sensible people would think “yeah right” and forget about it. But Dobreski and Vrcakovski supported their case with an extensive keyword advertising campaign, and a network of blogs, web-sites and reviews, endorsing the product.
Anyone checking out the dubious sounding claims would find dozens of apparently independent web-sites such as such as DIYEnergy.Best-Products-Reviews.com. stating that the product works.
Magniwork’s ad campaign was widely distributed via Google Adwords on energy-related sites. The upshot was that several perfectly innocent and respectable site–owners appeared to endorse the product by the presence of its ads on their pages. “We generated 7 sales in about 2-3 days, before we were informed about their dubious nature,” says exasperated energy expert Stirling Allan of pureenergysystems.com.
He complained to Google in August and within days Google pulled the Magniwork campaign. “We blocked the URL from advertising because it breached our rules,” a Google spokesman told Off-Grid.net last friday.
But the internet has a life of its own when it comes to spreading ideas and it doesn’t care whether they are funny, fascinating or fraudulent. Just before Google started blocking the Magniworks ad campaign, blogs and apparently independent reviews appeared on sites with names like energyforpenneisaday, magnetsforenergy, payitforth, freepowerblueprint and dozens of others.
It is impossible to trace the owners of many of these sites because they are careful to conceal their identities. But Off-Grid suspects that some of them are the work of Messrs Dobreski and Vrcakovski and their associates.
More worrying however was the rash of ‘second order’ scammers or affiliates who soon emerged. While not directly involved in the initial scam, (perhaps even victims of it at first) they made opportunist links from their own web sites to Magniwork.
David Venaleck who we reported on recently, was one such ‘partner’. He linked several relatively balanced articles about the magnetic generator with a site he owns called magnetsforrenergy which simply connects to Magniwork where all the misleading claims are made.
The motive of Venaleck and others is of course money. It is common practise for affiliates to receive commissions of up to fifteen per cent on goods sold through their sites. Venaleck claims to have sold hundreds of the guides.
That is how the internet is a party to the Magniwork scam. First, ads from Google and rivals Yahoo and MSN can turn up anywhere. More significantly, its speed and ubiquity enable completely unrelated but unscrupulous operators to jump aboard the passing gravy train, irrespective of whether or not it is carrying bone fide goods.
To make matters worse the internet allows scammers to post misleading messages on other sites and if they are discovered, modify their claims or register new sites within hours.
Google admits it is powerless to take further action. “Ads for the same product under other names can slip through our net because although our algorithms are clever, they don’t understand context,” said a Google spokesman.
He claimed that it would not be moral or legal for Google to try to stop the sale of the Magniworks device or any other product. “We are only a reflection of the web, not its policeman. We aren’t experts in everything. We cant stop people setting up web sites, we don’t have and shouldn’t have that power.”
The moral of this story: never trust a network, no matter how benevolent it seems.
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