Tuesday, November 01, 2005

If It Looks Too Good to Be True ...

You have probably heard the old saying that if something looks too good to be true, it probably is. These days we receive offers that look to good to be true through many media, including phone, mail, and email. How can you tell which of these offers are scams? Check out the new website, LooksTooGoodToBeTrue.com.

The "Looks Too Good To Be True" website is the corner stone of a campaign to prevent internet fraud. It was developed by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and several major corporations and industry groups. The purpose of the site is to provide consumers with information to so they don't fall for internet scams. Features include

  • a Fraud Risk Test, to help you assess whether you are a potential victim;
  • descriptions of different types of fraud;
  • victim stories and a link you can use to share your story;
  • FAQs and tips;
  • links to pages where you can file complaints or report crimes to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, or the Federal Trade Commission; and
  • consumer alerts.

As the site's introduction notes, [e]ducation, good judgment, and a healthy dose of skepticism are the best defenses against becoming a victim. How are your defenses?

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