Scammers pose as the BBB

Scammers pose as the BBB

The main weapon in the scammer’s arsenal is their ability to pose as almost anyone. In the past scammers have posed as potential buyers, potential sellers, employers, kidnappers, police, and imprisoned grandchildren just to name a few. One scammer is even said to have posed as the current US Secretary of the Treasury in order to steal people’s identities under the guise of assisting with economic impact payments. The one organization we never heard about scammers posing as was the one organization that does the most to try to protect consumers against scams. That was until now.

According to Wikipedia, the Better Business Bureau is a private nonprofit organization whose purpose is to focus on advancing marketplace trust. To that aim, they’ve become one of the leading national authorities in most types of commercial scams. Their scam tracker tool not only lets you know when a scam is happening in your area but it allows you to report scams as well.

Imagine the BBB’s surprise when they received word that their name had been used in a scam. An elderly man in San Jose, California lost $45,000 to a lottery scam. The scammers had called him claiming to be from the Better Business Bureau and told the man that he had won a ‘mega lottery’. The scammers then kept getting the man to pay thousands of dollars in fake taxes and various fraudulent fees before he could claim his prize.

After becoming impatient with not receiving his prize, the man contacted the BBB wondering where the lottery payout was. This is when he discovered that the BBB was not trying to collect money from him and that the whole thing was a scam.

Remember, that anyone online or calling and texting you can say they’re whoever they want you to believe they are. Also, when it comes to lotteries and sweepstakes, no one ever gets picked at random for a contest that they never entered. Not only that, but it is illegal in the United States for anyone to try to make you pay before claiming any winnings. That’s why commercial sweepstakes always mention that no purchase is necessary.