Wisconsin BBB warns businesses of impostor scams

Scammers try to steal financial information using BBB logos.
Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 3:40 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Wisconsin Better Business Bureau (BBB) is warning of several impostor scams where scammers pretend to be the BBB over email or the phone.

Scammers use BBB logos and fake emails to convince businesses they have purchased a crypto product they should investigate, or that they should review a fake complaint document, the BBB warned in a statement.

According to the BBB, a consumer got a phone call from someone who “identified me by my home phone number and then proceeded to say my credit was good and I made payments on time, and he said that I made even higher payments than usual and then he proceeded to say I didn’t have to pay my credit cards anymore because he was from the [Better Business Bureau]...”

The BBB identified several types of scams consumers and businesses might encounter, as well as ways to avoid them:

Fake invoice scams

In a fake invoice scam, scammers will send businesses an invoice claiming they requested a product or service they did not, with hopes of getting the business to pay them. This can be anything from office supplies to web services. Fake invoices are also a method for phishing information from businesses, the BBB explained.

To avoid fake invoice scams:

  • Keep updated records. By understanding how the business deals with other companies, businesses can know if they are expecting a real invoice. Treat unexpected invoices with suspicion, the BBB said.
  • Establish a procedure for invoices. Businesses should make sure employees know how to deal with invoices to avoid any quick decisions. Communicating with employees will make sure everyone knows what to do.

Tech support scams

In a tech support scam, scammers will email or call claiming they are investigating other scammers stealing money from a business, the BBB continued. The scammer will say they need access to a company computer to return the stolen money, using a fake site with a BBB logo to access the victim’s bank account.

Some methods used in tech support scams include:

  • Warning screens that may pop up on computers.
  • Cold calls claiming to be from a known tech company.
  • Sponsored links in search results.
  • Emails with suspicious links or attachments.

The BBB asks consumers and businesses to report suspicious callers or emails to the BBB Scam Tracker and to contact a local BBB.

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