Congress has approved US employment extension benefits for 2012, stated a press release. So what should people do?
Americans can now file for a full 99 week unemployment extension at Unemployment-Extension.org, stated the press release.
The press release was sent through PRWeb on Dec. 10, 2011. It was hosted on a Yahoo! news page and ranks fairly high on search engines for the phrase 2012 Unemployment Extension.
Moreover, the Web site Unemployment-extention.org ranks high on Google for the phrase file for unemployment extension and has over 1,400 Google+ +1's.
Congress, however, did not actually pass the 2012 unemployment extension yet. The bill did not pass on Saturday Dec. 10 and did not pass as of 1 p.m. ET Dec. 13. In addition, the proper way to file an unemployment benefits claim is through one's state authorities (this is the New York state's Web site).
If one were to apply for unemployment benefits on Unemployment-extension.org's Web site, one is asked to fill out one's First Name, Last Name, Email, Address, Zip Code, Phone, Home Phone and Mobile phone. After collecting this information, Unemployment-extension.org directs applicants to the appropriate state government Web sites.
Below is the Web site of Unemployment-extension.org. On top of its homepage, it reiterates its claim that the bill has passed, stating: 12/13/2011 Unemployment Extension Update for 2012: Legislation Announces an Extension of Compensation for 2012.
On the Term and conditions section of the Web site, it reads:
The Unemployement-Extension.org WebSite is a private organization designed to help unemployed U.S. citizens. By answering the questions provided above, we are able to provide helpful private services and offers.
You may be contacted by these organizations by email or by phone if you fill out any forms. This is not an application for state unemployment benefits or enrollment.
Thumasathit said ADCHEMY previously had an opt-in type of lead generation relationship with Unemployment-extension.org. That relationship ended several months ago, said Thumasathit.
ADCHEMY is extremely red-faced from this incident and is doing everything in [its] power to remove its mention from Unemployment-extension.org, he said.
A call to the number 310-601-6491, which is listed on Unemployment-extension.org's press release, was met with an automated Verizon Wireless message stating that the customer is not available. An email to the contact information provided by PRWeb was not immediately returned. IBTimes could not find any other contact information from Unemployment-extension.org's Web site.
Update: Mark Quinones, founder of Unemployment-Extension.Org, spoke to IBTimes.
He said the press release was incorrect and takes full responsibility for this error. He said he has requested PRWeb to retract the release.
Regarding his Web site, he said: We're not doing something deceptive. We're getting people back to school. It will better qualify them when they apply for a job position.
With the contact information he receives from the Web site, Quinones said Unemployment-Extension.Org calls the individuals and assesses if they are open to further education. If so, Unemployment-Extension.Org may pass their information to universities.
Quinones emphasized that filling out a form on Unemployment-Extension.Org does ultimately take people to the correct state-run Web sites.