Bank of America gets punked online

A phony Google+ site that appeared to belong to the bank has been taken down, creating embarrassment for B of A and Google.

By Kim Peterson Nov 15, 2011 3:40PM
Bank of America (BAC) said what?

Pranksters created a fake website for the bank on the Google+ social network this month, posting unflattering pictures of executives and snarky status updates.

The site appeared to be legitimate, with the bank's logo and contact information. But a description that read "We took your bailout money and your mortgage rates are going up" and updates such as "Big company party in foreclosed house #2340087 tonight!" were dead giveaways that the bank had been punked.

The site is down now, but you can see an archived image here.

The pranksters introduced the bank by writing: "We are committed to making as much money as possible from usury, coercion, bribery, insider trading, extortion and debit card fees as possible." That last part referred to the $5 monthly debit card fee that Bank of America was considering but then canceled amid a public uproar.

The page was created earlier this month, as soon as Google (GOOG) opened the business pages on its Google+ network. Several companies have created wonderful pages on the site, including Toyota (TM) and Macy's (M). You can see Pepsi's (PEP) Google+ page here.

The fake Bank of America page is an embarrassment for the bank and for Google, which appears not to verify pages as the real thing. The attackers seem to have tricked Google into giving them a business page under the bank's name, notes the Naked Security blog.

Some marketing professionals are saying the bank has been "brandjacked" -- a type of attack that is getting easier with all the ways companies can connect with customers online.

"It was exactly this kind of parody that Google+ was hoping to avoid by only allowing real names to be used when it launched, and the high-profile nature of this example suggests a return to forced authenticity," writes Time magazine's Graeme McMillan. "Way to ruin it for everyone again, Bank of America."


54Comments
Nov 15, 2011 4:26PM
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Haha, BoA deserves to be punked, they have been punking consumers for years.

Nov 15, 2011 5:06PM
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You reap what you sow BOA! You suck.

Nov 15, 2011 5:48PM
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Come on people we all know that boa really means bend over america. Now that they have been bent over lets hope they dont need a reach around.LOL
Nov 15, 2011 6:03PM
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Oh come on BOA, where is your sense of humor?  Did they say anything that was not true? Get over yourself as we sure are getting over you.
Nov 16, 2011 4:53AM
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I'm not so sure that what it said is too far from the truth.  Are we really sure it got punked or maybe one of the recently laid off workers decided to get a bit of revenge?

 

Or, maybe one of the fat PIGS who got a $600,000 bonus check last year found out that this year, because they had to reverse the Debit Card Fee, their bonus was going to be reduced to $450,000.

 

Keep leaving Bank of America.  Don't let their decision to dump the Debit Card Fee make you think for one minute they are concerned about their customers.  Their obvious devotion to spending more time finding new fees and ways to screw customers over, versus hiring people and making the company run efficiently says it all.  I switched to BECU in August, adn in 3 months, I have received more money in interest on my accounts than I did in the last 3 YEARS at Bank of UNAmerica.

 

BOA for BOA constrictor.  Yeah, Love it.  I think of BOA more as:

 

Bunch of A**holes.

 

Nov 15, 2011 6:09PM
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Can't think of a large business that deserves to be "punked" more than BOA.  Unless, just maybe, CitiBank.
Nov 15, 2011 6:35PM
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I hate Bank of America with a passion... Commercial banks are bad news, I moved all my money into a local bank and my credit union. I encourage everyone else to do the same.

Nov 16, 2011 11:03AM
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BOA has been communicating with me very nicely lately.....they have taken to calling me DAILY to make a friendly reminder that my mortgage is due in X number of days!  The calls begin on the 2nd of the month...and only stop when the payment is received (my payment is due on the 8th) - I have only been late once on my mortgage----3 flippin years ago.  They do NOT leave a message....only continually call EVERY HOUR on the HOUR until you answer.  Remember it is always "just a reminder"!  My point?  I think they are making tooooooo much money if they can pay someone to sit and make calls like this....
Nov 15, 2011 4:43PM
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Lukki, you sound like a BAC shareholder... SHUT THE #### UP

Nov 15, 2011 6:28PM
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Im sorry, it's just funny.... our financial system has been exposed and should be ashamed of themselves, but they won't be .... we the customers need to take control by NOT doing business with them.... go to a small independent bank or credit union.
Nov 15, 2011 6:39PM
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Since BoA got a bail out shouldn't my mortgage be bailed out to. Ha Ha.
Nov 15, 2011 9:33PM
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I worked for this bank for 15 years and can't believe how the mighty have fallen! Back when Ken Lewis took over they changed their tag line to "Higher Expectations" and Lewis went around the country talking to B of A associates telling us that the number 1 goal of the bank was to become, "The world's most admired company"  And now it's happened...... in OPPOSITE WORLD!!  I was sad when I was laid off back in '06, but now I'm glad I'm no longer associated with this company. 
Nov 16, 2011 11:01AM
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The word on the street after the Joplin tornado was that Bank of America was the worst offender of taking advantage of their customers who lost their homes. It was reported that BOA held on to peoples ' insurance check money as long as they could.

 

Yes, I think this company is a soulless scum.

This kind of outrage is what the Occupy Wall Street movement is all about.

Nov 15, 2011 8:02PM
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If America wants to make Wall Street fail, they should with draw all their money, sell all their stocks they have invested in a Wall Street Bank. If America starts doing this, it wouldn't take long for them to get the message. CEO's would be losing their millons of dollars of bonus's and America could take back Wall Street, but like most of Americans will only bitch about it and not take the necessary steps to get their attentions. It is left up to all americans if they want to correct this problem!!
Nov 15, 2011 4:53PM
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Lukki...Funny ...you could of just said..They gonna get sued. We don't care if you are a shareholder. Nothing will happen anyway.
Nov 16, 2011 10:19AM
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I viewed the archived page of the site.  Everything it said was accurate.  Are they sure it wasn't real, only, a little TOO real, for boa to deal with?
Nov 15, 2011 6:18PM
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I also could not agree more with the taking down of these big bankers (called Robber Barons in the old days just before the great Depression/Meltdown) screw B of A. I look forward to them ALL being punked in some way or another.

 

And for you "share" holders, why not invest in something that doesn't rip off your fellow americans!! shame on you all for agreeing with how your "investment" screwed your neighbor and fellow american. Where are your ethics?  

Nov 16, 2011 12:14AM
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ITS PRETTY BAD WHEN YOU HAVE A PAYROLL CHECK FROM BANK OF AMERICA AND THEY CHARGE YOU MONEY $ TO CASH IT BECAUSE YOU DONT HAVE AN ACCOUNT THERE !!!!

Nov 15, 2011 6:13PM
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BOA Should be broken up into a million pieces.
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