A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Dept. of Financial Institutions offers tips on protect personal data to avoid scams, fraud, identity theft

The Public Protection Cabinet’s Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) reminds Kentuckians about the importance of protecting personal data to avoid scams, fraud, and identity theft. Gov. Andy Beshear, who initiated Kentucky’s Scam Alert program as attorney general, continues to focus his administration’s efforts on the protection of Kentuckians from those who would commit fraud. “Data...

Kentucky enters multi-state settlement with PPGF to ensure donors receive adequate information

Attorney General Daniel Cameron has announced that Kentucky has entered a multi-state settlement with PayPal Charitable Giving Fund, Inc. (PPGF) to ensure donors receive adequate information and disclosures when making charitable contributions through the company’s online fundraising platform. Cameron joins 22 other state law enforcement partners in announcing this settlement. PPGF, the charitable...

BBB Trends: Older people are often targets of scams; here are most common, and how not to be a victim

According to the FBI, if you are age 60 or older, you are a likely target for scammers who sell fraudulent products and services by phone. Scammers know that senior citizens were raised to be polite and trusting, and often find it difficult to just say “no” or hang up the phone. Combined with the knowledge that senior citizens may have savings, own their own home and have excellent credit, these...

BBB: Looking for easy cash? Be sure to pass on this job (don’t share access to Facebook account)

Giving a stranger access to your Facebook account is generally a bad idea. But so-called “ad launderers” are making an offer some people can’t resist: quick, easy cash. It might sound like a good way to make money, but as the saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. How the Scam Works You come across a website that says you can rent out your Facebook account for easy cash...

BBB Trends: Veteran holiday too often a tie for ‘soundalike’ solicitations; beware of scams

By Sandra Guile Better Business Bureau Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Veteran’s Day are all great holidays to honor the men and women who have served or are currently serving our country. It’s also a great opportunity for scam artists to look like, sound like, and act as a charity when they aren’t. There are numerous nonprofits honorably providing the services veterans need and several more...

BBB Trends: Unsettled weather? Beware of lurking storm chasers — don’t let emotions get best of you

Storm chasers are people who follow severe weather hoping to get business from victims whose homes have been damaged by storms. They follow weather reports and sometimes will arrive in town before the storm even hits and are ready to pounce as soon as the weather breaks. After the storm hits, they’ll target areas hardest hit by damage because they “just so happen” to notice the homes have storm...

BBB Trends: Before the image leaves pawprints on your heart, check the source

By Sandra Guile Better Business Bureau March 23 is National Puppy Day, and if your family is considering adding a furry friend to the family, there are many things to think about when purchasing a pet – like how to get stains out of the carpet or what valuables to tuck out of the way from being chewed up. The most important detail to consider is whether or not your family is ready to take on...

BBB: Returning gifts? Be timely — and check the store’s return policies; return frauders are at work too

Did you receive a sweater for Christmas that’s too small?  Three copies of the same movie on DVD?  Chances are you will be among those who are now trying to return or exchange gifts at retailers this week. Better Business Bureau® serving Central & Eastern Kentucky reminds you that sellers have policies in place to protect their businesses from “return fraud” as well as make customers...

AG says deposit scam leaves victims repaying the bank; Franklin County resident lost $10,000

A new scam warning has been issued by Attorney General Andy Beshear after a mobile deposit scam left a Franklin County resident with a $10,000 bank tab. Andy Beshear Beshear said reports from legitimate local banks and Kentuckians indicate scammers are succeeding in their efforts to put a new twist on the old counterfeit check scam. “Falling victim to a counterfeit mobile deposit scam often results...

Better Business Bureau reminding Kentuckians to use caution in contracting repairs after recent storms

The Better Business Bureau is urging Central and Eastern Kentucky home and business owners who suffered property damage and flooding issues from this weekend’s severe storms to research what companies they hire to help rebuild and repair damage. “Disastrous events like the winds and heavy rains that hit the area can act as a magnet for out-of-town contractors to come offering their services. Some...

LG&E, KU encouraging Kentuckians to learn signs of scams as part of National Consumer Protection Week

Not long ago, scammers used traditional calls and mail to our homes to make contact with unsuspecting consumers in an effort to carry out their crimes, but as technology has advanced, scammers have too. From dialing our smartphones, to texting, emailing and employing social media, scammers have just as many tools at their disposal as we have ways to communicate. That’s why it’s more important than...

Watch for scammers using fake charities to profit from hurricane relief efforts, Beshear says

Attorney General Andy Beshear issued a scam alert to warn Kentuckians of fake charity scams related to Hurricane Harvey. Due to the lasting devastation of Hurricane Harvey, Beshear is asking Kentuckians to be wary of scammers attempting to profit from relief efforts. “The families and communities impacted by this deadly storm deserve our help,” said Beshear. “I am asking generous Kentuckians...

Attorney General’s Offices warns of new scam targeting programs aimed at assisting veterans

A scam preying upon Kentuckians’ goodwill toward veterans and veteran causes has been reported, according to Attorney General Andy Beshear. The AG office has received several reports, including one from Kentucky State Police, who said a caller claiming to be with the “Coalition for Veterans of America” is seeking donations to help cover Veterans Affairs medical bills and aid homeless veterans. The...

BBB Trends: Veterans holidays are a time for sound-alike solicitations; beware of scams and pressure

Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Veteran’s Day are all great holidays to honor the men and women who have served or are currently serving our country. It’s also a great opportunity for scam artists to look like, sound like, and act like a charity when they aren’t. There are numerous nonprofits honorably providing the services veterans need and several more that support active military personnel...

BBB Trends: Reputation is everything in business, so be aware of scammers trying to use your good name

By Sandra Guile Special to KyForward Your reputation is everything in business, so when a scammer uses your business name to get people to give them personal information, it can cause major problems. People tend to be wary of a company after a scam, even if the business wasn’t directly involved. To try and minimize the damage, offering advice and support quickly and effectively can restore customers’...

BBB Trends: Is it a scam or a sales pitch? Be skeptical, proactive — and remember Scam Tracker

By Sandra Guile Special to KyForward The constant reporting of scams from all angles – phone, email, online, and in person – can make a person nervous to accept anything at face value. Even if all precautions are taken to protect personal data, it can seem like every solicitation is an attempt to steal important information. While being vigilant is important, an overactive sense of unease...

BBB Trends: Beware of job offers online — some sites just aren’t what they are pretending to be

By Sandra Guile Better Business Bureau Any job offers extended from www.rds-usa.com should not be accepted. BBB learned that the domain for the website is registered in Hong Kong and isn’t the site it’s pretending to be. The fake website has details designed to make it look like it represents a local company – Rapid Delivery Service, a BBB Accredited Business – but it’s actually...

BBB Trends: If caller asks ‘can you hear me,’ it’s probably a scam — so just hang up

By Sandra Guile Special to KyForward The phone rings but the number is unfamiliar. You answer it and the voice on the other end of the line asks “Can you hear me?” You can, so you respond with a simple “yes.” Unfortunately, that answer may cause problems you weren’t expecting BBB’s Scam Tracker has received several reports in the Greater Cincinnati area about calls that...

BBB Trends: Scammers continue to be a problem — here’s a summary of what to watch for in 2017

By Sanda Guile Better Business Bureau As 2016 ends, now is the time to look back and to look forward to the year ahead. BBB has been busy; we handled numerous scam inquiries, advising consumers and businesses alike to monitor and report suspicious activity they encountered. Unfortunately, a new year does not bring a new perspective to scammers; they’ll continue to find creative ways to steal personal...

Beshear issues scam alert for military families as potential schemes target veterans

As Veterans Day approaches, Attorney General Andy Beshear is warning Kentuckians to be cautious of scams targeting veterans. According to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, there are nearly 330,000 veterans in Kentucky who could be the target of scams. The scams include calls and emails offering bogus military discounts and soliciting personal military information. Scammers are pretending...