Protecting Yourself Against Fraud
'Tis the season for scam artists -- every year the schemes defraud millions of people. They use the phone, email, postal mail, and the internet to trick you into sending money or giving out personal information. Here are some tips:
- Don't buy from a phone or internet seller you don't know. Do online searches to check them out.
- Do not wire money -- it is like sending cash and nearly impossible to trace.
- If you are asked to make a donation, make sure the charity is real.
- Look carefully pitches you hear about on the Internet, radio and TV -- if it looks like an amazing deal, it is probably not real.
- Don't play a foreign lottery.
If you think you may have been scammed, file a complaint with
- The Better Business Bureau
- The Federal Trade Commission
- Office of the Attorney General in Texas
If you get what looks like lottery material from a foreign country through the postal mail, take it to your local postmaster. (consumer.ftc.gov)
Sponsored by the Lawyer Referral Service