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The organization is an excellent advocate for individuals, but what’s in it for the small business? No other organization so clearly demonstrates that a business maintains good standing in the community, and our community is all of North America. Membership is a fast and convenient method for us to prove that we do warrant the trust required to do business with strangers online. Of course, the BBB is more than a resource for consumers to gauge the trustworthiness of a business. We’ve been a BBB Accredited Business and supporters of the BBB for some time now, and I’ve even joined the BBB Board for my region. We conducted a 3-year quantitative study on our ecommerce site to identify the key reasons consumers shopped with us. Then there was the major expose by Brian Ross on ABC News where he exposed the fraud within the BBB. Based on our data and the ABC report, we no longer pay for the accreditation, but still mention we are A+ rated by the BBB (without use of the logo of course).
I was also an advisor to our local BBB board and found that there was little attention paid to the bigger strategic issues. A further thought as to relevance: I feel the BBB is just as relevant today as it was 100 years ago.
To me the BBB is a front for businesses that have questionable or shady business ethics; nothing more nothing less. Standard procedure for shady businesses that come and go is step 1 which is join the BBB for cover! DisclaimerViews expressed on this Blog are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect the views of BBB or the Council of Better Business Bureaus.
A collection of information and advice from Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington.
Stand out on Small Business SaturdayReposted from my column in the Portland Business Tribune. With Thanksgiving approaching, our minds are focused on two things: How am I going to cook the turkey this year, and where am I going to go shopping over the weekend? BBB gives high priority to truth in advertising—we believe consumers should be able to accept ads at face value to use as part of their buying decisions. As a business owner, you may find yourself sometimes coming up short on both of these resources, so it’s important to make the most of what you have. Arlington, VA – Every year, Better Business Bureau receives thousands of calls and emails from consumers who have been scammed… or from the lucky ones who have dodged scams by being wary.
The Council of Better Business Bureaus, the umbrella organization for the 113 local BBBs across the U.S. Auction Reseller Scam – Many people turn to Ebay and other online auctions sites to sell used items they no longer need, and relatively new electronics seem to do especially well. Invisible Home Improvements – Home improvement scams vary little from year to year, and most involve some type of shoddy workmanship from unlicensed or untrained workers.
Foreign Currency Scam – Investments in foreign currency can sound like a great idea, and scammers frequently use real current events and news stories to make their pitches even more appealing. Scam Texts – With online and mobile banking skyrocketing, it’s not a surprise that scams quickly follow.
Fake Friend Scam – Did you ever get a Friend Request on Facebook from someone you already thought was your Friend?


For more information on investment scams, go to BBB Smart Investing, a partnership with the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping consumers find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. Launched in 1912, the BBB was originally founded for the purpose of bringing advertisers together to combat false or misleading ads. We knew early on that, as a web-based business, we needed a way to communicate accountability.
Membership indicates that a company is run with integrity and the intention to treat customers fairly.
He lives in Montana, serves on the Board of the BBB Serving Eastern Washington, North Idaho, and Montana, and loves building companies. But anyway, now anyone can achieve an A+ rating if they truly deserve one, like your company. The same scams still prey on the unwary: some getting a modern spin and others not bothering. With promises of a “free” medical alert system, the scam targeted seniors and caretakers and claimed to be offering the system free of charge because a family member or friend had already paid for it.
But scammers have figured out a way to fool sellers into shipping goods without receiving payment. In this scam, con artists are taking advantage of technology that can change what is visible on Caller ID, and allowing them to pose as the office of the local sheriff or other law enforcement agency.
The hardest for homeowners to detect, and therefore the easiest for scammers to pull off, are repairs or improvements to the areas of your home that you can’t see: roofs, chimneys, air ducts, crawl spaces, etc. They advertise an easy investment with high return and low risk when you purchase Iraqi Dinar, Vietnamese Dong or, most recently, the Egyptian Pound. One major tactic recently is the use of scam texts, known as “smishing,” to steal personal information. Scammers call anyway, of course, and they’ve even found a way to scam consumers by pretending to be a government official calling to sign you up or confirming your previous participation on the Dot Not call list!
This membership assures customers that our company lives up to the highest ethical standards. Their blog and other links on their website provide us with plenty of great ideas for keeping our customers satisfied and maintaining our reputation.
Follow that to Accrediation info and that should get you what you need as well as connected to the correct local BBB. McAfffee has helped his company as well, but the BBB still gives people trust in their dealings and gives customers recourse that isn’t really found anywhere else.
The difference between a legitimate company with a mission it believes in and one that isn’t sincerely trying to do the right thing is that when something is pointed out to us that doesn’t seem right, we change it. Others are more narrowly focused, but take people for thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. Inmany cases, seniors were asked to provide their bank account or credit information to “verify” their identity and, as a result, were charged the monthly $35 service fee. Usually the buyer claims it’s an “emergency” of some sort – a child’s birthday, a member of the military shipping out – and asks the seller to ship the same day.
They call to say there is a warrant out for your arrest, but that you can pay a fine in order to avoid criminal charges. Scammers may simply knock at your door offering a great deal because they were “in the neighborhood,” but more and more they are using telemarketing, email and even social media to reach homeowners.


The plan is that, when those governments revalue their currencies, increasing their worth against the dollar, you just sell and cash in.
They look like a text alert from your bank, asking you to confirm information or “reactivate your debit card” by following a link on your smart phone.
A popular recent scam has been the theft of people’s online identities to create fake profiles, which can be used in a variety of ways. The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for 113 local, independent BBBs across the United States and Canada, as well as home to its national programs on dispute resolution and industry self-regulation. If, somehow, we fail to achieve this goal, then the customer can inform the BBB, which will address the issue for them.
Also, the BBB is delivering its services in more modern ways; through phone Apps, social media, QR codes, customer reviews on our website, and Google Analytics. The Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Data Book estimates that Americans lost $1.4 billion to scams in 2012.
The system, of course, never arrived and the seniors were left with a charge they had trouble getting refunded. The seller receives an email that looks like it’s from PayPal confirming the payment, but emails are easy to fake.
Helpful videos on YouTube can add legitimacy to a contractor, but consumers have no way of knowing if the video is real or “borrowed” from a legitimate contractor. Banks of all sizes have been targeted, and details of the scam vary, but the outcome is the same: scammers get your banking information, maybe even your ATM number and PIN. A new Friend can learn a lot about you to scam you later, “recommend” sketchy websites that download malware, use your account to scrap information on your other Friends, even impersonate a military officer or other trustworthy person to perpetrate a romance scam.
For example, they may have your bank's routing number and ask you to provide your account number. While we’ve always been accountable to our customers, being accountable to the BBB demonstrates our intentions in a bigger way.
This offers us yet another way to engage our customers in a dialog, which helps us improve our service, raise our standards, and create a positive buzz surrounding our business. Easy rule of thumb – be wary of “free” offers that require your personal information upfront and always verify with the supposed friend or family member that the caller says paid for the service.
Always confirm payment in your Ebay and PayPal accounts before shipping, especially to an overseas address.
It may just be a lucky guess, but don’t be fooled into thinking you are about to be arrested. The problem is that they will be very difficult to sell, and it's extremely unlikely they will ever significantly increase in value. You may even inadvertently download malicious software that gives the scammer access to anything on your phone.
Be careful on social media, keep your privacy settings high, and don’t share confidential information. Or, they may ask for your credit card or Social Security number, Medicare ID, or other personal information. These services are free, but sharing personal information with a scammer could cost you a lot.



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