This past week, political parties have stepped up the calls to the Latino community to help influence the vote. Local television stations reported that the calls are being made to get registration and voters to the polls.
While these calls are great participation, BBB reminds residents that there are a few who take advantage of the political fervor.
From robocalls offering a giveaway for taking a political survey, to promises that President Barack Obama will pay your utility bill, scammers are gearing up for this years presidential election. The Better Business Bureau advises voters to be on the lookout for these types of scams.
POLITICAL SURVEY FREE CRUISE OFFER
These public-opinion surveys typically involve a recorded announcement offering a free cruise in exchange for participating in a telephone survey. However, at the end of the call consumers are asked for a debit- or credit-card number to cover port fees and taxes not so free after all. Consumers who hesitate or ask for time to consider the offer are subject to high-pressure tactics, such as being told the offer is only good right now.
PRESIDENT OBAMA WILL PAY YOUR UTILITY BILL
Consumers are being contacted through fliers, social media, text messages and even door-to-door by scammers claiming President Obama is providing a credit toward consumers utility bills. Scammers will ask for a Social Security number and bank routing numbers to arrange the payments. In reality, there is no money, and customers believe they have paid their bills when they have not. Worse, theyve just given away everything needed for identity fraud.
FUNDRAISING CALLS FOR POLITICAL DONATIONS
Consumers have reported calls from organizations asking for donations. However, these calls may not really be related to either the Obama or Romney campaigns. Avoid providing your personal information over the phone.
SCAMMERS CLAIMING THEY NEED TO CHECK ON YOUR ELIGIBILITY TO VOTE
Your voter registration record is with your state, and no one will call or email you to verify your eligibility. These callers claim they need your credit card or Social Security number.
AVOID ELECTION CAMPAIGN SHAKEDOWNS
Æ Legitimate polling companies will never offer prizes for participating in a telephone survey, and they wont ask for a credit card number.
Æ If youd like to give to a political campaign or charity, find contact information yourself and dont give financial information to an unsolicited caller.
Æ Requesting a callback number is no guarantee you will be connected with a legitimate campaign fundraising committee.
Robb Hicken, 208-947-2115