Robocalls have become an all-too-common nuisance for consumers. Robocalls are unsolicited, pre-recorded phone calls, often scams, which are made to consumers without their permission, as opposed to calls solicited by the consumer, such as those from pharmacies and childrens’ schools. Robocalls are illegal in Massachusetts under M.G.L. c. 159C. While consumers can, and should, sign-up -for both the state and national Do-Not-Call lists, unfortunately this does not always stop many unscrupulous solicitors and scammers from making these calls.
The Consumer Federation of America and the North American Consumer Protection Investigators recently released the results of the 2015 Consumer Complaint Survey. This report is based on consumer information, complaints, and suggestions for increased consumer protections from 33 consumer agencies in 21 states.
The Massachusetts Do-Not-Call Registry allows consumers to stop receiving certain telephone solicitations simply by signing-up and providing their telephone number. Established in 2003, the law requires telephone solicitors, list-brokers, and telemarketers to register with the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, subscribe to the Do-Not-Call Registry, and remove registered telephone numbers of consumers from their call lists.
Massachusetts consumers looking to renew a license or schedule a road test online through the Registry of Motor Vehicles may come across unofficial third-party websites, or “mimic sites.” Do NOT be fooled! These services have no affiliation with the RMV, regardless of how real they may seem.
Pokémon Go, the new Nintendo app sweeping the world, melds famous fictional creatures with reality to allow users to “catch ‘em all” throughout their daily lives. But with the game’s new mobile dominance and rising popularity, comes real-world dangers for consumers.
Food festivals. Wine and Beer festivals. Music festivals. Art festivals. There is no shortage of ways for consumers to partake in a favorite activity this summer. However, scammers have begun to take advantage of individuals wishing to attend a festival by creating phony websites and “selling” tickets to events that don’t actually exist.
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The Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation compiles publicly-available scam, identity theft, and fraud complaints from around the Commonwealth via police logs and news outlets, as well as through the Office’s Consumer Information Hotline. Below are three recent consumer issues and how you can …Continue Reading Scam Log Analysis, March 2016 – April 2016
Consumers looking to purchase used cars often consider buying from a private seller as an alternative to buying through a dealership. They may research vehicles for sale by owner through online platforms such as Craigslist, or see vehicles with “For Sale” signs on private …Continue Reading Are you buying a car from a Curbstoner?
As the number of residents buying and selling goods online continues to increase, the potential for risks associated with these transactions does as well. Did you know that many police departments allow residents to carry-out internet sales transactions on police property? While each department …Continue Reading Online Smarts: Mass. Sales Transaction Zones