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Phone scams still top the charts in Oregon

Old school social engineering is still the most popular way to try to part a stranager and their money.

In recognition of National Consumer Protection Week (March 5-11, 2017), Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum today announced the annual Oregon Department of Justice's 2016 Top Ten Consumer Complaints.

According a release, for the second year in a row, imposter scam calls, such as the IRS imposter scam, came in as the number one complaint in Oregon. Imposter scam calls received more than five times the number of consumer complaints as the next category.

Telecommunications and motor vehicle sales practices took the next two spots. New this year to the list is construction contractors, coming in tenth.

"We all need to be savvy consumers, and watch out for our friends and family who might fall victim to a scam. Today's scammers are quick, sophisticated, and will take your money in a few seconds if they can," said Attorney General Rosenblum.

The top ten consumer complaints in Oregon are:

1. Imposter Scam Calls (5,049 complaints)

2. Telecommunications (941 complaints)

3. Motor Vehicle Sales (572 complaints)

4. Financial Services (358 complaints)

5. Health Related (300 complaints)

6. Collection Agencies (232 complaints)

7. International Money Transfer Schemes (226 complaints)

8. Auto Repair (203 complaints)

9. Home Ownership Issues (192 complaints)

10. Construction Contractors (164 complaints)

The imposter scam call can work in several ways. The most popular method is when a fraudster calls you and pretends to be the IRS, a police officer or even a grandchild. All of the scammers will ask for money over the phone or by money card to pay down a debt, tax bill, or even bail a grandchild out of jail.

Oregon has one of the most successful consumer protection and education programs in the country. The entire program operates exclusively on funds recovered from businesses that break the law.

www.oregonconsumer.gov or 1-877-877-9392.


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