Anchorage, Alaska — March , 2015 — Better Business Bureau is committed to providing tools and tips to protect consumers from scams and to help them make better purchasing decisions during National Consumer Protection Week, March 1-7.
The consumer protection agency strives to address growing problems surrounding identity theft, fraud, technology and safety—and not just during National Consumer Protection Week, but every week of the year.
“In the aftermath of recent data breaches nationwide, there is a new sense of urgency for all consumers and businesses when it comes to safeguarding their information” says Tyler Andrew, CEO of BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington.
The Federal Trade Commission received more than 2.5 million consumer complaints in 2014. Identity theft topped the list, making up 13 percent of all complaints received.
BBB offers the following tips for avoiding scams:
- Thoroughly research businesses or organizations before shopping with them or donating money. Start at bbb.org/search.
- Keep antivirus software up-to-date and surf the Internet with caution.
- Shred all physical copies of important documents when they are no longer needed. Review BBB’s Records Retention Schedule for tips, and find community shred events at bbb.org.
- Do not give out personal information, such as Social Security numbers and bank account numbers, to strangers who make contact by phone, Internet or mail.
- Finally, if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
If you believe you have been scammed, file a complaint with BBB.
Michelle Tabler, Alaska Regional Manager: 907-644-5208 | firstname.lastname@example.org
David Quinlan, Senior Director of Public Relations: 206-676-4119