Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Some Rip-Offs, Tricks, and Scams

Pretexting is the illegal act of acquiring a consumer’s personal information under false pretenses. Pretexters then sell that information to criminals who use it to open credit card accounts or steal assets.

Pretexters will use a number of and scams to extract your personal information. For example, a pretexter will call a consumer pretending to conduct a survey. After extracting the information, the pretexter then calls the consumer’s bank and pretends to be the consumer. This opens several doors of free access to the consumer’s information:
  • Gather account numbers.

  • Inquire about the account balance. or

  • Find out additional financial information about the consumer.
Where pretexters break the law is when they extract information that is not public record – such as home purchase or bankruptcy filing. Clearly, they cross the line when they collect information such as Social Security numbers, credit card or bank account numbers, or information about investments.

Under Federal law, it is illegal for pretexters, or anyone, for that matter, “to use false, factitious, or fraudulent statements or documents to get consumer information from a financial institution or directly from a customer of a financial institution; use forged, counterfeit, lost, or stolen documents to get consumer information from a financial institution; or ask another person to get someone else’s customer information using false, factitious, or fraudulent statements ; or using false, factitious, or fraudulent documents or forged, counterfeit, lost, or stolen documents,” according to the Federal Trade Commission.

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Behavior Management Expert and Maximizing Your Potential Mentor™ Etienne A. Gibbs is a life-observing author, engaging talk show host, humorous speaker, and successful trainer who teaches small business owners, managers, and employees how to speak, think, and perform in ways that will help them shine. In the end, they maximize their critical thinking, speaking, and management skills.

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