Advance Fee Scams*
Be wary of ads promising guaranteed
jobs, guaranteed loans, credit repair, debt consolidation or similar claims.
Many of these offers are only a way to get you to send money in advance
in exchange for little or no service.
- Be cautious when responding
to advertisements which use 900 telephone numbers. You can be charged
substantial and differing amounts for calls to 900 numbers.
- Be careful with your personal
information, including Social Security number, credit card numbers and
bank account numbers, among others. Fraudulent businesses could use
this information to make an unauthorized charge to your credit card
or to withdraw money from you bank account.
- Before you make any payment,
ask the business to send you a contract and other information stating
the terms of the service and whether you can cancel the service and
get a refund.
- Ask how long the firm has
been in business and if it is licensed properly. Request that the company
send you copies of its business or other licenses. Review all contracts
- Contact the Illinois Attorney
General's office and the Better Business Bureau to find out a company's
- For information on the dangers
of these types of scams, call the non-profit National Fraud Hotline
at 1 (800) 876-7060 (toll free).
* Courtesy of The U.S. Office
of Consumer Affairs