telephone and email, advertise in well-known newspapers and magazines,
through your mail box or at your door.
- Ask Questions
- Listen Carefully
- Refuse to be pressured
- Ask for things in writing
- Full description
- Total cost
- Name/Address/Telephone Number
- A hand shake is not good enough
- Read and understand any contract before you sign it
- Check references and ask for names of past customers
- Always get a written receipt when buying something
- Keep good records
Additional Prevention Information :
- When in doubt about a product or business, contact
the Better Business
- Never do business with a person who approaches you
on the street
- Never give cash for a check
- Be very cautious of cash-only deals
- Never give someone a blank check or let them help
you fill it out.
- If you rent an apartment and pay in cash always
get a receipt immediately
- Do not enter contests, accept free gifts or prizes
unless you clearly understand your obligation
- Make sure your mail box is secure and promptly remove
- Be suspicious of anyone going door to door to solicit
- Do not pay for work up front
- Do not allow yourself to be told that repairs are
- Do not rely on the word of some one you do not know
- Never allow someone you do not know to enter in
- Ask for references
- Ask to see contractor's insurance information.
Contractors should carry workers' compensation, property damage and
personal liability insurance. Also check expiration dates to insure
coverage does not expire prior to the project completion date.
- Get a written contract. Be sure to read it before
- A full description of work to be performed
- Total Cost of the job
- A firm completion date
- The contractor's license number
- All warranty information
- Address and phone number of the contractor
- Beware of anyone that tells you the deal is a secret
and that you must not tell anyone
- Do not allow your decision to be influenced by greed
- If something sounds to good to be true, it probably
Be a Wise Consumer:
Don't buy health products or treatments that include: a promise
for a quick and dramatic cure, testimonials, appeals to emotion
instead of reason, or a single product that cures many ills.
Medical "cures" can be dangerous to your health. A
health care practitioner should be consulted before taking any
of these products.
Look closely at offers that come in the mail. Con artists often
use official-looking forms with bold graphics that look like invoices
to lure victims. These include "free vacations," phony
inheritance schemes, fees charged for normally free services,
credit card repair, phony job opportunities, and unsolicited merchandise.
If you receive items in the mail that you did not order you are
under no obligation to pay for them.
Be suspicious of ads that promise quick cash working from your
home. After you've paid for the supplies or a how-to book to
get started, you often find there's no market for the product
and there's no way to get your money back.
Listen carefully to the name of a charity requesting money.
Fraudulent charities often use names that sound like a reputable,
well-known organization such as the American Cancer Association
(instead of the American Cancer Society). Ask for a financial
report before you donate; a reputable charity will always send
Investigate before you invest. Never make an investment with
a stranger over the phone. Beware of promises that include the
terms "get rich quick", or "a once in a lifetime
Use common sense in dealing with auto repairs. Get a written
estimate, read it carefully, and never give a repair shop permission
to "fix everything."
Never get involved with chain letters (pyramid schemes) and foreign
lotteries. The only persons who benefit are the promoters of
the scheme. Chain letters and participation in foreign lotteries
are prohibited by U.S. federal law.
If you are a victim:
Call 911, if the crime occurred in the City of Pine Bluff and give
as much information as you can about the person(s) involved. Also provide
a copy of your records (receipts/contracts/advertisement).
If the suspect is located in another jurisdiction, the report
has to be made in that jurisdiction.
To report an internet crime file a complaint with the FBI's Internet
Crime Complaint Center at www.IC3.gov
Fraud Prevention Resources:
Safety ] [ Youth
Safety ] [ Home
Safety ] [ Business
Safety ] [ Internet
Safety ] [ Fraud
Prevention Through Environment Design ] [ Gang
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