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UK Crecks Dwn on 'Wikapedia' and 'Twittr'

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Take comfort intoxicated web surfers, the spelling impaired, the typo prone and those who unwittingly transpose proper nouns. and will dupe you no more!

Thanks to PhonepayPlus, a UK-based regulatory body that oversees premium rate telephone services, two so-called typosquatting websites that mimicked the online encyclopedia and microblog have each been slapped with £100,000 ($156,000) fines and were booted from the Internet, according to The Next Web. The impostor sites not only approximated the real ones, they offered competitions to win Apple (AAPL) products to visitors who didn’t realize they were being charged £3 ($4.75) to enter via a sent and received cell phone text.

“In both cases, the landing pages for the ‘squatted’ sites looked like the genuine sites the consumer was searching for – the ‘squatted’ sites used the same logos, colouring and fonts,” read a PhonepayPlus statement released today. “These ‘squatted’ sites informed consumers that they had won or could claim a prize, such as an iPad. In both cases, consumers were given the impression that to enter or claim they simply had to enter their contact details and answer some questions.”

Though the Wikipedia look-a-like does appear to be down, visiting immediately redirects to a page  within a site called An immediate greeting appears onscreen over a Twitter-esque background that tells the user they’ve been selected to take part in a survey. The rewards for its completion include an iPad2, a “$1,000 Value” for Walmart (WMT) -- how that value will be manifested isn’t exactly clear -- and a $1,000 Best Buy (BBY) gift card although it’s spelled “Bestbuy.”

Looks like they got the whole typo idea from personal experience.

With findings like those from The Next Web that claim 80% of mis-typed URLs end up on typosquatting sites, it really is a wonder why some seedy entrepreneur hasn’t yet snatched up
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