During October, the AGO will be promoting National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM); visit the AGO’s Internet Safety page for more cyber security information.
Thanks to Washington's Lottery for drafting this consumer alert
Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Officials from Washington's Lottery are bringing attention to lottery scams. Individuals and groups are calling and emailing victims on a more regular basis with the goal of tricking people into thinking they’ve won a lottery prize.
Scammers are posing as recruiters for National Outdoor Media with the intent of stealing personal information.
The ‘Chinese Blessing Scam’ has become an epidemic in Chinatowns across the country. Chinese elderly women are the targeted victims. One scammer approaches the victim trying to find a spiritual doctor. The original scammer is joined by more scammers, claiming that they know this doctor and that he had helped them in some miraculous way. They tell the victim they must put all their valuable’s in a sack and pray over them and not to open the sack for a couple of days. After those couple of days has passed, the bag is opened and all the valuables are gone.
Timeshare owners across the country should be cautious when it comes to selling their unwanted timeshares. A timeshare representative would state they have a buyer and all the consumer needs to pay upfront are the closing costs, which normally range from $1500 to $2500. The representative would then say the consumer will get the check in the mail for their timeshare as soon as the consumer wires the money to them.
With summer and warm weather fast
approaching in Washington State, the Washington State Attorney General's
Office wants to warn consumers of asphalt scamming companies. Scammers
usually prey on people who have gravel driveways but everyone should be
Hurricane Sandy was the second-costliest hurricane in United States
history, surpassed only by Hurricane Katrina. Scam artists are now
trying to sell Sandy flood damaged vehicles here in Washington State. A flood damaged car may look normal, but almost always will have serious
problems including mildew and corroded wires which can result in an
Scammers have started calling Washington
residents claiming to represent various courts demanding residents to
wire money by 10 a.m. Most recently, the scammers are using the Des
Moines Municipal Court's phone number. The
Attorney General's Office (AGO) believes these scammers are spoofing
the courts phone numbers so when they call you, it looks like a court is
Washington residents have been receiving letters through the mail saying they have "qualified for an award of two roundtrip airline tickets" through US Airlines. These scammers want you to call their toll-free number in order to get your personal information-not to give you free airline tickets. This is a phishing scam.
The first annual Military Consumer Protection day is July 17, 2013. Military families are consumers too and with all of the hardships a military family goes through such as separation from family members makes them prime victims for scammers.
The Washington State Attorney General's Office has received well over 250 complaints against scammers with the word "yellow page" and other variations of the word in their names. A business will receive a phone call or a written solicitation along the lines of "You had a free listing, would you like to renew it?" However, there is actually nothing to renew.
Consumer protection advocates across the country are celebrating National Consumer Protection Week
this week—spotlighting information available to help people and their
families protect themselves against scams, fraud and other financial
Today, the Attorney General’s Office learned people are receiving
e-mails that appear to be from the AGO Webmaster or other “@atg.wa.gov”
e-mail addresses with the following subject lines:
• New Pick Coming! But First I need your help, details inside
• Pick Of The Week
• This Stock is another monster week ahead
• DON’T MISS TODAY’S TRADING IDEA
• Your Mind Blowing Monster Pick!
• News Out & Must Read Inside.
Let us assure you. These are spoofs.
Thankfully, the shred event season has begun and I won’t have to spend hours catching up on my shredding, and neither will you. We can bring our boxes to a free community shredding event to keep our personal information out of the hands of crooks. The first shred event of the season was last week, and events are scheduled through October. Check our calendar for dates and locations across Washington state.
January 28 is Data Privacy Day. To mark the occasion, the Online Trust
Alliance (OTA) announced a series of town hall meetings and the release
of the OTA 2013 Data Protection & Breach Readiness Guide. Attorney
General Bob Ferguson is the keynote for the Seattle event on January 30.