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Deception, Inc.

A host of shady online services is making it easy to lie and cheat. Are you sick of lying, cheating, and stealing the old-fashioned way? Of...

A host of shady online services is making it easy to lie and cheat.

Are you sick of lying, cheating, and stealing the old-fashioned way? Of course you are-it's too hard. Who wants to spend all that time and effort cooking up excuses, ruses, and swindles to deceive unwitting victims, when you could be enjoying your ill-gotten gains?Good news! There's no need to abandon your commitment to indolence. A raft of new online services is making it easy for shirkers, layabouts, mountebanks, and freeloaders to deceive their employers, IRS agents, professors, spouses, children, and others. Here's a brief tour through this online mall of deception.Fake ATM Receiptscustomreceipts.comIt's a known fact: chicks dig rich guys. But how are you going to score when you're almost broke? Carny rolls don't work like they used to (and besides, if you flash one, you might be expected to use it). No, today's smart grifters log on to Custom Receipts and order fake ATM slips that'll trick the objects of their affection into believing they've got mountains of money in the bank. As the site recommends: "Hand out your number on the back of one of our fake ATM receipts. They're a player's dream come true."Only $16 for a stack of 52, one for every week of the year.Alibi Networkalibinetwork.comAfter you've hooked up with some honey whose fallen for your ATM receipt trick, you'll probably want to start spending a little quality time with her at that $29.99 motel across town. But what about that nosy spouse of yours at home, the one who is always interfering with your personal life? Get yourself over to the Alibi Network and set yourself up with a bulletproof excuse that will fool even the shrewdest shrew. From their website:The basic concept is rather simple: we invent, create and provide alibis and excuses for people wishing to justify absences. These alibis can take various forms: a telephone call simulating work emergency or car accident, an invitation to a classical music event, a letter documenting your participation in a sales seminar, a Dallas Cowboys football game or a Britney Spears concert ticket... They'll even "provide you with seminar handout and certificate of achievement or the program of an event to which you were invited." Won't wifey be proud of your accomplishment.Fees for the alibi service start at $75. (Governor Sanford, give us a call.)Fake Receipt Generator This is the free gift that keeps on giving. Pad your expense account. Sweeten your Schedule C. Accidentally leave one of these in the gift box to make that $8 necklace look like it cost $295. Ka-ching-those receipts add up quick. The uses for this customizable receipt maker are limited only by your insatiable desire to avoid doing the right thing.Corrupted Word Filescorrupted-files.comWhat is it with professors and their rigid rules about turning in papers by a certain time and date? Do they really expect a free spirit such as you to adhere to their patched-sleeve, tweedy, uptight schedules? Deadlines are for squares and businesspigs only-down with the man! For $4.95, this site will sell you a "wide array of corrupted Word files that are guaranteed not to open on a Mac or PC." That pointy-head geek will waste all weekend trying to open your "term paper" while you wait for the folks at to hurry the hell up and finish your real report so you can turn it in Monday morning with an "I swear I'm gonna go back to using a typewriter!" grin. Hey, Mr. Professor, put that in your carved Marx-head briar pipe and smoke it.If the idea of using these kinds of services appeals to you, remember that getting caught can lead to fines, prison time, or moving into a dingy studio apartment and fighting a losing custody battle for your kids. A quick review of the IRS's tax fraud penalty page could make you think twice about using bogus receipts to pad your expenses. Even the deception merchants are starting to feel the heat: in early July one of the more notorious fake-receipt generating services,, dropped off the face of the Web after a recent blitz of blog-fueled publicity. Why, things have gotten so bad it almost makes you want to give up and resort to a life of integrity.

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