My Journey into the Rabbit Hole of Scammers, Scoundrels, ALOA Security Professionals Association & Britney Spears?
To go "down the rabbit hole" is to enter a period of chaos or confusion. It is a metaphor for the conceptual path which is thought to lead to the true nature of reality. Infinitesimally deep and complex, venturing too far down is probably not that great of an idea. Therefore, it is commonly used as an expression or euphuism for a portal to bizarro world, significantly strange happenings, and extremely surreal situations, etc. A complex matrix full of allusions and illusion.
As in the story of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland, where Alice follows the White Rabbit down a hole and comes upon a great hallway lined with doors, I found myself one day staring into a portal, a hole, a cyber doorway and thought to myself...should I? Will I be prepared to pass through a doorway and take on a journey into the darkness?
While relaxing in a hammock on a warm summers day, reading several emails I came across a message that read - "Is ALOA & the Scammers one in the same?" from a concerned locksmith. Considering that David Peer was a member and ALOA Security Professionals Association Inc. (ALOA SPAI) President Tom Demont referred to these scammers in a Keynotes magazine editorial as "scumbags", the question captured my interested since it is not possible to have things both ways. You can't call people scumbags while they are or were your own members and you certainly can't engage in a strategy of feeding the news media, local and state legislators or the locksmith community a narrative that ultimately comes back at you!
Before replying to the person who contacted me, I decided to clear my mind and allow myself to be open to new experiences and to let myself follow wherever I would be led in trying to find an answer to the question.
Much like Alice's encounter with the White Rabbit who she had followed into the rabbit hole, I found myself peering into a "portal" that unwittingly took me on a journey that was so shocking, and enlightening that I found myself pondering if this was a dream or a parallel fictional universe of a Lewis Carroll novel.
If you are the adventurous type, take my hand and I will share my journey with you!
WARNING! - You will experience a phenomena that departs from the conventional rules of the real world. The plunge into this rabbit hole represents a plunge into deep, constantly changing transformations that you must pay attention and follow along. A sense of enlightenment may cause you to change what you believe to be true, or it all can be just a dream. You decide.
Down the Hole We Go! Click on ALL links, but you must return here to this blog. Click on the "READ MORE" below to continue your journey!
We first Google the keywords "Locksmith Franchise" into a computer and we discover - Locksmith Local Careers & Locksmith Local franchise opportunity which states the following - "For years, our company has been hands open to all parties interested in joining our team. Becoming a franchisee is very simple. You are required to fill in the form below. You can also get more information by calling us at 888 551 1798 Locksmith Franchise". Strangely, there is no form to fill So we must call the number. Before we do, lets examine the Locksmith Local franchise web page better.
Licensed & Insured
They appear to be legitimate but remember, we are now in the rabbit hole, in a world upside down and inside out. L&L Locksmith Services telephone number 646-315-8883 (remember it)
The pricing schedule seen is eerily similar to others found on websites identified by the news media as being questionable.
14545 Friar St., Van Nuys CA 91411
Our journey continues when a return call is received. Maybe this will be what gets us through the door just like Alice! It was a representative from L&L Services, Inc. It was explained to me that they were “ok" because they are ALOA members and I was provided the name of Locksmiths NYC. The payment process and compensation was described, and went something like this:
A 50/50 split, with as little payment to the agent as possible. Meaning, that a balance between credit card and cash payments would allow for the agent to keep the cash balance thereby eliminating the need for any checks to be cut or payment to be made to the agent by L&L Services.
Wow, I thought, is this real? They are members of the ALOA Security Professionals Association as described. That could be a good thing, no? Visiting the L&L website I see that they offer a lead service for carpet cleaning, locksmiths, water damage, garage doors, towing and plumbing. They don’t ask for any upfront fees or cost,and they don’t make you pay for the calls, or call tracking. You pay nothing to work with them! What a deal! According to them you are paid a healthy and very generous commission and all of your jobs will be paid same day, so there is no billing to be concerned about.
They identify themselves as being around for 13 years with websites that are highly ranked on top search engines such as Google and Bing. Their high traffic brings a high number of phone calls, and brings in high paychecks where none of the locksmiths working with them suffer from the economy.
Door #2 appears to be too good to be true! Is this a dream? Will I shrink or shall I grow inside this new Wonderland? There are so many more doors to enter and explore!
At the bottom of the L&L website in the right hand corner is a link to the LL Service Author that leads us to a person named Tsour Lee or Tsour Lee Adato, who is listed as President on his Linkedin profile. Tsour appears to be a colorful character in this psychedelic Wonderland. As we explore further we see claims that he is attending the California Institute of Technology and has attended Sivan College which is in Raanana, Israel - an educational institution according to Bloombergs Business Week, but I could not find it in any Google search or websites listing all schools in Israel. Just another bizarro twist inside the rabbit hole I suppose.
Tsour is a pretty colorful, hip character we meet in our journey. Behind Door #2 we find him on his YouTube channel listed as 911TowingService. As we dance to his music inside the rabbit hole we discover that Tsour claims he was the lead security detail for Brittney Spears! According to isreaility.com, Adato used to be a backup dancer in the Habimah musical Mary Lou. So is he a dancer, musician, cameraman or real bodyguard? Learn more about his 1 year stint - Here
Enough of the big Wonderland Tea Party with celebrities, and on with our journey! While jamming with Tsour on the L&L website we see another link at the bottom of the website for LOCKSMTH JOBS and when we go there we find a link that says AUTHOR JESSICA K. This is the same Jessica that is shown in Tsour's Google Circle (which now says Mike Lee). Jessica K. appears to have attended the United States Air Force Academy and is listed as Human Resources. Here is the JOB APPLICATION. The contact information shows the phone number 888-551-1794 which I copied and Googled to find employment listings everywhere form HotFrog to Craigslists.
Jessica K was kind enough to provide a link to a website called Locksmith Tools USA, which offered a shopping cart with a complete array of products from MAXTECH International. Mysteriously, this website no longer shows up.
What's behind door #4? Could there be more? What bizarre twist or turn will reveal itself next? As I turn the knob I recall that I was told at the beginning of this journey that everything is alright, all is good because these people were ALOA members. So let's go see if this is true!
What a surprise! They are, and they even have a link to a their website! Stepping through this door there are many, many more doors and the rabbit hole gets deeper and darker - much darker. The first thing we notice is the company logo, a familiar logo once used with Run Local Locksmith. Then another from ALOA, Locksmith You Can Trust with a License. But suddenly we notice some strange things happening. This is one crazy rabbit hole!
As we scroll down the Locksmith NYC webpage, we find another distortion of reality as it says they offer Pop-A-Lock services! A quick call to Rob Reynolds, Director of Operations Pop-A-Lock reveals that Locksmith NYC is not affiliated with PAL. What should we expect in this bizarro world. But hey, they are members of ALOA!
The ALOA member Locksmith NYC has both an address and a telephone number shown on the website which is familiar 646-315-8883. So we Google the phone number and we find MORE doors, many, many more. Hey! Wait a minute, it is the same telephone number on the Local Locksmith website as L&L Locksmith Services!
One door even leads to New Jersey and another interesting website called 911 Locksmith Services, which is eerily similar to Tsour Lee's YouTube channel of 911 Towing Service. What we see is the same pricing schedule we see so often on questionable websites, and if you click on the menu item FRANCHISE we again see them using Pop-A-Lock again. 911 Locksmith Services' You Tube channel shows advertisements for locksmith services from Charlotte to Fresno!
If you click on the menu selection for CAREERS you will find a FAX number at the bottom of the page. Google it and we find it goes to Miss Jessica K of L&L Lead Lead Service, LLC.
Look further into the Google search results and the same fax number belongs to Glia Lee Adato Esq. otherwise found on Linkedin as Gila Kaplan - Lee Adato, Facebook and COO and Legal Counsel of L&L Lead Service. However, another Linkedin profile for the company shows Liz Topete as Human Resource Manager -
Back to the 911 Locksmith Services website, we find the telephone number 800-715-3019. GOOGLE IT and the rabbit hole exposes itself even more. The same phone number is used for the following -
So who is Liad Messinger, Certified Registed Locksmith (CRL) by the ALOA Security Professionals Association? Well he is the Co-Founder and CEO of L&L Lead Services. He is also listed as having a license in good ol' Texas for a company called "A Certified Locksmiths" along with Amir Rubenshtein and Sharon Rubenshtein. Funny thing is that the mailing address is 793 Center St. #364 Lewiston,, N.Y. 14092, which is a UPS Store.
Amir Rubenshtein, also has stake in a company known as USA Locksmith COM Inc, along with a person named Eric Cohen and 3 others, according to a license found in good ol' Texas! The mailing address is a P.O. Box 1140 in Hackensack, N.J. 07602.
Eric Cohen of USA Locksmith is also identified in a Wisconsin judgement with a company called Prestige Business Solutions, Inc. He also possesses a locksmith license in New Jersey #34LX00011200.
With all of these doors, tunnels, twists and turns in the rabbit hole, it is time for some fresh air! Liad Messingers business listed on the ALOA Security Professionals Associations Find A Locksmith Directory indicates that his location is 182 Ave C NEW YORK, NY 10009, which is not too far, so let's take a ride and visit! But wait, Locksmith NYC is listed as a mobile business. But surely anyone found on the ALOA Find a Locksmith directory would certainly have an address where they can be found, right? The news media seems to tell the consumers to rely on this directory to Find a Locksmth You Can Trust. Is this correct? No worries then, off we go!
To my surprise, things in the real world are as bizarre as in the rabbit hole. Here we are at the location and no locksmith? As we talk to the locals and the adjacent businesses, they say "icksnay no way" to any locksmith being there! Hmm..this whole journey is making my head spin, how about you?
Suddenly, I remember! There is another address on the website address we were sent from the ALOA website. This is great! Now we will get to the bottom of finding this ALOA Locksmith You Can Trust.
Icksnay no way again! Oye Vey! What is going on here? In this Wonderland, it is starting to make me wonder if I am ever going to meet this ALOA recommended locksmith, so I can feel comfortable becoming a franchise with his company.
Frustrated, I turn to YELP and find another address not too far away. Off we go again only to be disappointed, but lucky. With all the running around in the rabbit hole and on the streets of NY, we can take a break and have our clothes dry cleaned at the address where YELP said we would find Liad Messinger and Locksmith NYC! It is amazing how you find things, isn't it?
I know, I know! Earlier in this journey we found a Google listing for Pro Locksmth Service 24/7 with the same telephone number as Locksmith NYC, we can always check that out because it is just across the river at 378 Duncan Ave. Jersey City, N.J. 07306. Or is it?
Exhausted and disappointed, it appears trying to find ALOA SPAI member Liad Messinger and his Locksmith NYC company was like playing Where in the World is Waldo.
So, at the end of our journey down the rabbit hole, we find ourselves with our heads spinning as if we spent a weekend partying with Timothy Leary, not knowing if it was real or a dream or a psychedelic trip on LSD. In this altered state of designed chaos, the lines are blurred and the good becomes bad, and bad becomes good, up is down and left is right; where locksmiths ask themselves, "Who in the World Am I? Am I real or am I fake?" A riddle with no answer at a Mad Hatter Tea Party with DJ Tsour Lee Adato and his Marky Wahlberg smirk jammin' the techno Rave style (Honestly, the guy puts out some good sound!)
So whatever the reality of things may be, L&L Lead Services is looking to open "Franchises" in your area. Click here to learn more about L&L Lead Service. If they get the calls, and you need the work, then it may be an opportunity to consider.
As for the ALOA Security Professionals Association, well it looks like Oops, They Did it Again!
Locksmiths, state and local legislators, news media, and the consumers have been barraged with the idea that locksmith licensing is the solution to stopping scams. The Society of Professional Locksmiths strongly disagrees. The SOPL has properly and responsibly pointed out that those identified by news reports as being scammers are in fact state licensed which, eliminates the ALOA SPAI strategy that licensing is a long term solution. We all have seen and heard all the news stories and rhetoric with vivid descriptions as to what constitutes a scammer operation. False names, multiple addresses, multiple websites, fictitious locations, and bait and switch pricing, etc.
If we all took the advice from the ALOA SPAI leadership and their Find A Locksmith directory, then it would appear that every locksmith in the country should apply for work with L&L Lead Services, I am seriously considering it! Since ALOA SPAI is promoting them directly or indirectly, it must be legitimate, right? Everything we have discovered in the rabbit hole contradicts their public talking points and member directives. But we are in the rabbit hole after all, so the scam may reach deeper than our senses can decipher, or this is all make believe. You just never know who is who, anymore. One thing is certain, and that is the Society of Professional Locksmiths has been warning everyone about the perils of the rabbit hole for a long time.
Up is down, right is left, a bizarro world where scammers are legitimate and legitimate locksmiths are the scammers. Scumbags are members with licenses and honest members must be controlled and regulated. It's pretty tough believing just who the Locksmiths You Can Trust are. When things are right under your nose and you cannot discover it, then it certainly is cause for great concern, and calls into question the motivations of those feeding the news media, legislators, FTC, consumers and most of all - the locksmiths - all of the false narratives. For those who claim they are The Authoritative Voice of Locksmith and Security Professionals, they sure seem clueless to me. Of course, reality sometimes is stranger then fiction and who knows just whose voice they really are.
Maybe the real scumbags are the ones calling others scumbags. I find myself at the end of this journey right back where I started and rethinking the question - Is ALOA & the Scammers one in the same?
What do you think?
Tom Lynch, CRL