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AGO News Releases with Topic: Consumer Alert
A fast-moving phone scam called the largest of its kind is targeting taxpayers across the country. Victims have reported threats of license suspension, arrest and deportation.
As donors consider contributing to relief efforts for the Snohomish County mudslide tragedy, Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Secretary of State Kim Wyman are urging consumers to be on guard against scam artists who try to take advantage of the situation.
A new email phishing scam making the rounds nationwide has hit Washington state, and this one is disguised as a utility bill.

AGO, BBB and AARP partner to combat romance scams

As more people go cyber to find love, the Washington State Attorney General’s Office (AGO), the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and AARP warn of an uptick in reports of romance scams. According to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, romance scam victims lost more than $55 million in 2012. To combat this growing epidemic, consumer protection groups are spending Valentine’s Day warning singles about the dangers of “catfishing.”

Are you puzzled by a missed mobile call from Antigua, Barbuda, Jamaica or other exotic locations? No, you have not won a trip to the Caribbean.

After high-profile national data breaches, Attorney General’s Office encourages consumers to safeguard data

In recognition of Data Privacy Day, the Washington Attorney General’s Office (AGO) is urging businesses and individuals to take a moment to learn how to better protect information.

Consumers, keep an eye out for a post-holiday email scams carrying malicious malware disguised as a link to a helpful “change of address” form. Malware is software used to disrupt computer operation and gather sensitive information.
Attorney General warns to be wary of scams to follow

Neiman Marcus, a luxury specialty department store, has announced a payment card data breach. The store announced some of its customers’ payment cards were fraudulently used after making purchases at its stores.

Target announced today that in addition to the payment card data breach which affected approximately 40 million shoppers, 70 million shoppers had other information taken--such as names, mailing addresses, phone numbers and email addresses. The data breach occurred during the period of November to December 2013.
Attorneys general order U.S. Fidelis pay back 19,000 consumers nationwide

Attorney General Bob Ferguson joined three other state attorneys general today in announcing that approximately 19,000 consumers nationwide will share more than $9.3 million to compensate them for their problems with U.S. Fidelis, a now-defunct dealer of vehicle service contracts. Checks are going in the mail today for those who filed a claim.
Many businesses have contacted the state Attorney General’s Office and the Department of Labor & Industries about a misleading letter sent from a company called ‘Labor Standards Compliance Office’ listed at a Tacoma, Wash. address.
Scores of businesses are contacting the Department of Labor & Industries to report they have received an official-looking letter that implies they must buy required workplace posters or face fines. L&I did not send the letters, but wants to remind companies that the workplace posters are available for free.

A Going Out of Business (GOB) Sale is not something people usually want to consider. However, if necessary, it is important to do it right.

The Consumer Protection Division of the Washington State Attorney General’s Office (AGO) enforces the state Consumer Protection Act (CPA), RCW 19.86, that prohibits unfair or deceptive business practices.

 

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Secretary of State Kim Wyman are teaming up to warn consumers about a troubling practice by some individuals who solicit donations near retail stores on behalf of charities.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced today the filing of a major timeshare consumer protection case as part of the joint multi-state, multi-national law enforcement initiative coordinated by the Federal Trade Commission.
June 5, 2013 > AG warns of Medicare scams
Attorney General Bob Ferguson has learned Washington residents are receiving calls from scammers posing as Medicare officials seeking personal information, claiming to need the information to issue new Medicare cards.
In the wake of the massive tornados that touched down in Oklahoma this week, Better Business Bureau (BBB), the Washington State Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and the Secretary of State (SOS) are warning of opportunistic fraudsters. Cons follow the headlines and can easily create bogus charities under the guise of helping victims.
The Attorney General’s Office  and the Better Business Bureau are warning Washington residents to read the fine print before responding to letters from businesses  offering to sell them copies of records easily accessible from local government offices for a much lower price.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s High-Tech Unit has secured a $97,000 settlement with ZookaWare, an Arizona-based software company, and its owner for engaging in unfair and deceptive practices against consumers over the last several years.
Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson and the Better Business Bureau are teaming up to remind consumers that scammers never take a vacation.  Both the AGO and the BBB have seen a recent spike in “Timeshare Reseller” scams. Together both agencies have received more than 20 complaints since the start of the year.
Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson has ordered T-Mobile to correct deceptive advertising that promised consumers no annual contracts while carrying hidden charges for early termination of phone plans.  Today, the Attorney General's Office filed a court order signed by T-Mobile and effective nationwide that will ensure the company clearly communicates the limitations of its new “no-contract” wireless service plans and allows customers duped by the deceptive ads to exit their contracts with no penalty.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Secretary of State Kim Wyman today expressed their condolences to the victims of the horrific violence at the 2013 Boston Marathon—and warned people not to fall victim to fake fundraisers using the tragedy to scam people into making bogus contributions.
Attorney General Ferguson was infuriated to learn unauthorized financial planning companies were targeting senior veterans with schemes promising new untapped veterans benefits—if the veterans were willing to let these “planners” help manage their financial assets.
The Attorney General’s Office has learned people are receiving e-mails that appear to be from the AGO Webmaster or other “@atg.wa.gov” e-mail addresses with subject lines offering stock tips and other news. These are spoofs to trick people into parting with their personal information or lure them into clicking on a document or link that will infect their computer with viruses or malware.
OLYMPIA...Call them scammers, swindlers, fraudsters or grifters. But whatever you do, don’t believe a word they say.
The Attorney General’s Office today warned parents to be careful about educational companies who claim to be affiliated with their child’s school as a way to sell their wares.
SEATTLE – A powerful spam-sending application is attacking the most common smartphone operating system.

The Washington State Attorney General’s Office is joining the Washington State Departments of Veterans Affairs and Revenue in warning consumers about phone solicitors posing as state agents for a senior property tax relief program.  

 SEATTLE – The Washington State Attorney General’s Office is joining the Federal Trade Commission in warning consumers about a new scam targeting seniors. 

SEATTLE – Vianna Engel was determined to hold on to her home. “If I lose my property, my elderly mother loses her home, too,” Engel this week explained to a staff member at the Attorney General’s Office. Her mom’s single-wide mobile home sits on Engel’s property in Rochester. “She took care of me and I’m not going to let this happen to her.”

 

SEATTLE – If history is any guide, scammers will surely try to take advantage of news of the largest consumer protection settlement in U.S. history.
 

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