Teaneck Chamber Of Commerce Scam Warning
By Mel Fabrikant Tuesday, January 15, 2013, 03:04 PM EST
One of our members recently received a phone solicitation call from an individual that purportedly was soliciting advertising for the Teaneck High Sports Yearbook. Our member was wise enough not to place any orders over the phone and requested that material be sent via e-mail so that it could be properly reviewed. When the caller indicated that there was nothing readily available via e-mail, but yet was able to rattle off all the ad sizes and prices, but could not or rather would not note it in writing, red flags were raised. In an attempt to get further information from the solicitor, our merchant requested pricing on two ad sizes, indicated that he was on his way out for a meeting and would return the call later that day. While the caller had freely given his name at the beginning of the call, when asked for a contact phone number, one was provided.
Immediately after the call, our merchant called the number provided, reached a recorded announcement that was not very clear. Contact was then made with the Teaneck school system. It was determined that neither the caller's name nor the program was recognized.
1) If you had been contacted, by phone, e-mail and quite possibly by snail mail, please notify the Chamber with any details. Note Scam in the subject line.
2) If you had not yet been contacted, please beware. DO NOT provide ANY information. Be weary of any e-mails you might receive where the subject line is odd, ie, symbols, caps, misspellings, etc. If that is the case, DON'T OPEN, rather, just delete.
Please forward this e-mail to as many businesses and individuals you might know. Individuals could also be prey in this scheme. It is quite possible that this type of scam or similar scam could involve businesses, schools, charities or other fund raising endeavors in other areas as well.
Be very leery of solicitation calls, especially from persons that are unknown to you representing an organization within the community. Deal only with people you personally know. If you have any doubts... go with your gut instinct. Contact the organization directly.
Lastly, if you come across any scams, PLEASE share them with the Chamber so that we can get the word out, notify the appropriate authorities and share the information with our neighboring communities.
It is quite possible that this is not a scam in the usual sense, in that you will be getting what you contracted for BUT the organization that they presumably are representing might have no knowledge of what is going on and likewise will receive absolutely no benefits from your purchase of ad space. Likewise, the company possibly involved is not even a company located within our community.
Looking out for one another,
From Jennifer Glass
I'd also add that one can check out other online resources about charities to even see if they are legit - the BBB and the Secretaries of State offices usually have information on charities and can advise whether a particular charity is a real one or a fake. The only way someone can deduct the donation to a charity is if the organization is a 501(c)(3) recognized entity by the IRS, and the BBB/state offices will have that information available. Also, it is a good idea to request to not get phone solicitations, unless someone really knows the organization, but rather to have all solicitations mailed - that way you have more proof of what you're donating to and can take time to research.
Jennifer Glass, CreditCards NJ