BBB Hot Topics: April 2018

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By Better Business Bureau

 Take a look at BBB’s hot topics for April 2018!


  1. Derby and Oaks are right around the corner, so if you are on the search for tickets, be sure you are dealing with a reputable business. Check out the company at bbb.org first. Remember: if you are asked to wire money, it is most likely a scam.
  2. Starting April 2018, new Medicare cards will be automatically mailed out to current subscribers. Scammers are calling consumers and demanding payment for these new cards or asking for personal information to “verify” your account. Don’t fall for these scams!
  3. The IRS scam calls just keep coming! Scammers are impersonating the IRS and threatening consumers with lawsuits or jail time for back taxes and demand payment over the phone. If you get one of these calls, just hang up!
  4. Local consumers are reporting door-to-door sales from companies offering reduced rates for services such as asphalt, home security, or roofing. These phony businesses ask for payment upfront before they begin work and are pushy and demanding. Before you hire someone, be sure to check out the company at bbb.org.
  5. Did you get an email saying your Gmail account is being shut down? It’s a scam! These phony emails threaten to shut down consumer’s Gmail accounts if they don’t provide personal information, like a social security number. Gmail will NEVER ask for that type of information.
  6. If you receive a call from someone offering you a free government grant, hang up the phone! Scammers are telling consumers they qualify for “free” grants because they pay their bills on time or are just good citizens, then ask for a small upfront fee before they can send the money.
  7. Businesses: Beware of phony invoices! BBB has received reports of scammers who are posing as local chambers and government agencies. If you receive a suspicious email, contact the appropriate organization directly to find out if it’s real or not.
  8. Be careful with online job opportunities. Scammers are targeting job seekers online and offering high salaries, excellent benefits, and no experience required. The only catch: they need an upfront fee to cover training or supplies. Remember: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  9. A local consumer reported a Facebook sweepstakes scam to BBB. The scammer claimed to be the Facebook CEO and contacted her through FB Messenger, saying she had won several million dollars. All she had to do was send in some money to cover taxes and fees.
  10. If you get a call or email from someone claiming to be with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – don’t respond! Scam artists are using the FTC’s name to gain your trust to try to get you to send money upfront to receive money from a recent lawsuit. Don’t fall for it!


For more consumer tips, visit bbb.org or call 800.388.2222.