Have you or someone you know been contacted by mail, email or phone with an offer that sounded too good to be true? Are you worried that a senior loved one might fall victim to a fraud or scam? Well, the Washington AARP recently unveiled a new scam notification system allowing people to sign up for AARP fraud alerts available by phone or email. According to an article in The Seattle Times, by Jack Broom, Seattle Times staff reporter, the service will be available to people of any age. AARP Washington worked in conjunction with law enforcement agencies to set up the “Fraud Watch Network.” The notification system will help to “get the word out quickly about what’s going on,” according to Doug Shadel, State Director for AARP. People can sign up for the AARP fraud alerts at 1-800-646-2283. AARP also recommends to call everyone you know reminding them to be vigilant against scams. “One-on-one contacts can be an effective crime-fighting tool,” says Jean Mathisen, Director of AARP’s local fraud-fighting call center.
In addition to AARP’s efforts, most states have online information about consumer fraud. On the Washington State Attorney General’s “Filing a Complaint” website, you can file a complaint online or by mail, call with questions, or review the complaint process.
Using our “Free Public Records Search Directory” you can click on your specific state and scroll to “Attorney General Consumer Complaints” or “Consumer Complaints” to find available consumer information or to file an online complaint. Some of the states with consumer links include Maryland, Missouri, New Hampshire, Florida, Indiana, Utah, and Texas.
Examples of specific state links include the State of Alabama’s Consumer Protection website where you can “file a complaint” online or by mail. Alabama also offers “online updates” regarding frauds and scams. The State of Iowa Attorney General’s Office provides an “Online Consumer Fraud Complaint” form which you can submit either online or by mail. The State of Oregon not only offers a consumer hotline for submitting complaints but a “searchable database” of consumer complaints submitted on its consumer hotline since 2008. On Nebraska’s “Consumer Protection” page, you can sign up for consumer alerts, file a complaint online, and access a variety of informational brochures including a consumer protection guide, senior fraud brochure and others. In addition to the state resources for consumers, the Federal Trade Commission provides “scam alerts” by email and a website that can be searched by topic or date.
Whether you are a fraud victim or you want to avoid becoming one, there are many great resources available for assistance. If everyone is diligent about reporting frauds or scams, maybe we can protect one another from becoming an unsuspecting victim.
If you have any other public record needs, you can access them through our “Free Public Records Search Directory” by state, county, city or type of record.