Open Forum – November 21, 2010
Good Morning and Welcome.
The “donate” button on sites is very familiar. Loads of money has been raised and, in turn, good-to-great things have and are being done with the donations. On the other hand, there are donation terrorists out there and it is not just the little old lady being taken in. This sort of goes with the territory of Americans having big, gigantomatic hearts.
Addressing Fraud on the Internet
It seems as though the current state of political affairs in this country has us all on high alert for potential threats to our liberty. Unfortunately, some people are taking advantage of this climate to stoke fear and provoke sympathy with the goal of depriving us of our hard earned dollars. If you think you have fallen prey to such tactics, consider the following resources:
States’ Attorneys General: Most states’ AG’s offices are in place to address, among other things, consumer fraud and deception. If the perpetrator is in Illinois, for example, you can download a consumer complaint form at: http://www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/consumers/filecomplaint.html
You probably will not ever get your money back (especially since the AG in Illinois is a democrat), but at least you will have put the perpetrator on notice and perhaps prevented him/her from preying on others.
Perhaps your complaint is more appropriate for the Better Business Bureau in your community. In Chicago, for example, learn information about filing a complaint at https://odr.bbb.org/odrweb/public/getstarted.aspx.
Finally, consider simply cutting off the payment at the source. If you made payment by credit card, contact your card company and stop payment. If you made payment by PayPal, report the fraudster at https://cms.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/?cmd=_render-content&content_ID=security/buyer_protection_resolution
What other avenues are out there that we have not mentioned?
(Insight: More times than not when people seek to expose a scamming scumbag , it really is not about the money. It is about stopping others from the same grief. The best scam is the one that tugs at the heartstrings and mixes it with subtle guilt infliction. )