Scams How to spot them in Your Industry!

Protecting the consumers from the robbers!

Roy McDonald, what is a scam?

If we look at the history of a word or the origin of that word, weather it is the meaning of that word in another language or how it is a acronym of a word (slang) we can better understand how to proceed in our situation. If we search around on the word scam we can find some interesting results, on wikipedia we can see the true origin of the words history where it was first used and in what context. Here is a quote from the history of the word scam ;

History

The first known usage of the term “confidence man” in English was in 1849; it was used by American press during the United States trial of William Thompson. Thompson chatted with strangers until he asked if they had the confidence to lend him their watches, whereupon he would walk off with the watch; he was captured when a victim recognized him on the street.[1]

The true meaning as given on wikipedia is;

confidence trick or confidence game (also known as a bunkoconflim flamgafflegrifthustlescamschemeswindle or bamboozle) is an attempt to defraud a person or group by gaining their confidence.

If we take this a little further and look at the word confidence;

Confidence is generally described as a state of being certain either that a hypothesis or prediction is correct or that a chosen course of action is the best or most effective.

We can start to see that a “confidence trick” (scam) is something that is really up to market forces, as the term would surgest in real estate, “When the market is right, it is right and when the market is wrong, it is right!” This just means that no one really makes the definition singularly, it is a variety of sources that determines the result.

market is any one of a variety of different systemsinstitutionsproceduressocial relations and infrastructures where by personstrade, and goods and services are exchanged, forming part of the economy.

This means that we are always changing and there will always be a negative and a positive to the question, (is this or him or her a scam) what you will need to do is keep yourself up to date with the changes to the situation as tomorrow the market may change. Roy has a saying that goes; Planes fly into buildings! So you can never predict and you must always expect the change will come, it maybe the only prediction you can make.

How will this effect you in the evaluation of a scam? Well lets say a person was involved in being accused of scamming (confidence tick), and they then looked at what they where doing from the perspective of the person that had accused them of this, then change what they where doing. Would this person now be more aware of its consumers? Would their product or services be more in tune with the market now (remember the market is always changing) or would the person that had not had this experience become the one who is not with the times or timing of the market, now could be the one accused of scamming? It can be difficult for a consumer to find the true path they wish to take. That is why I believe a lot in the teachings of my mentor Roy McDonald. He has a primary focus of you purpose in life and where  you want to go and who you want to be. This will cut your decision time down in a big way. You will be well aware of what you want to do and where you want to be thus understanding that industry, product or service better then the average consumer, therefore being able to make a better, educated decision promptly. Have a look at Roy’s Seven Year Plan here this may help you create a future that is more focused and give you more clarity. You should also look for other mentors online that provide a lot of good free advice like Brad Sugars free ebooks.

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March 8, 2010 Posted by | Business, Consume, Consumer Scams, Courses, fraud, government resources, Real Estate, Report a Scam, Research sites, Scam Games, Seminars, Share Trading, State Resources, Superannuation, Training | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fighting Fraud Online with New Offensive

Scam watch join the online offensive

Online fraud and scams has jumped up over the last year with a 16% increase overall in the complaints, 68.6% of that was via the internet. A new campaign from the government site http:scamwatch.gov.au has produced a banner that you can add to your site to help protect consumers.

Article reference:

Channel 7 Sunrise

Full List:

2010 Government partners

2010 Private partners

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2010 Community partners

Scams Target you

Add the scam watch banner to your site

March 2, 2010 Posted by | Business, Consume, Consumer Scams, fraud, government resources, Real Estate, Report a Scam, Research sites, Scam Games, Seminars, Share Trading, State Resources, Superannuation | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

List of the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce: ACFT agencies

Here are a list of the Australian Government sites that are here for a resource;

A collection of great sites this is a perfect resource for you when you are doing you homework, researching a company, person or charity group. Bookmark this page so you have it as a quick reference.

Australian Bureau of Statistics produces research and statistics on personal fraud and scams in Australia.
www.abs.gov.au

Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy provides links to Australian Government initiatives to improve online security and fraud awareness.
www.dbcde.gov.au

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is responsible for enforcing the Trade Practices Act 1974 and the state/territory application legislation. It provides advice about scams and how to report them.
www.accc.gov.au

Attorney-General’s Department works to improve identity security, combat identity crime and protect the identities of Australians from being used for illegal purposes. Current initiatives include: The National Identity Security Strategy, The National Document Verification Service (DVS), and the ID Theft – Protecting Your Identity booklet.
www.ag.gov.au

Australian Communications and Media Authority is responsible for enforcing the Spam Act 2003 and has developed an online tool to report spam.
www.spam.acma.gov.au

Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) is Australia’s national crime and criminal justice research agency. Consumers can fill out a scams survey at www.aic.gov.au/research/fraud/acft/survey.html to gather information to help to improve the prevention, detection, investigation, and prosecution of scam offenders.
www.aic.gov.au

Australian Federal Police represented by the Australian High Tech Crime Centre (AHTCC) provides a nationally coordinated approach to technology-enabled crime. Its brief is to combat serious and complex high tech crimes, especially those beyond the capability of a single jurisdiction.
www.afp.gov.au
Media contact: National Media Team (02) 6275 7100

Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) investigates scams involving financial products and services including cold calling, phone investment scams and illegal investment schemes.
www.asic.gov.au

Great list from the Australian government here are some from the,

New Zealand Government;

Ministry of Consumer Affairs
www.consumeraffairs.govt.nz

Commerce Commission of New Zealand
www.comcom.govt.nz

Australian State and Territory consumer affairs and fair trading agencies

State and Territory consumer affairs and fair trading agencies protect and promote the interests of consumers by providing advice and assistance, enforcing state consumer laws, investigating complaints, and resolving disputes.

NSW
Office of Fair Trading (OFT)
www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au

VIC
Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV)
www.consumer.vic.gov.au

SA
Office of Consumer & Business Affairs (OCBA)
www.ocba.sa.gov.au

QLD
Office of Fair Trading (OFT)
www.fairtrading.qld.gov.au

Tas
Consumer Affairs and Fair Trading (CAFT)
www.consumer.tas.gov.au

NT
Consumer Affairs (Department of Justice)
www.consumeraffairs.nt.gov.au

WA
Department of Consumer and Employment Protection (DOCEP)
www.docep.wa.gov.au

ACT
Office of Regulatory Services
www.ors.act.gov.au

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Here is some other ACFT information

Taskforce partners

Taskforce members are joined in communicating with Australian consumers about scams by a range of community, non-government and private sector organisations. A list of Taskforce partners will be available on www.scamwatch.gov.au soon.

Reporting a scam

Consumers who think they’ve spotted a scam can report a scam or find out more information about scams on the SCAMwatch website at www.scamwatch.gov.au or call 1300 795 995.

Scams survey

Consumers can also fill out a scams survey on the Australian Institute of Criminology website atwww.aic.gov.au/research/fraud/acft/survey.html Gathering this information will help to improve the prevention, detection, investigation, and prosecution of scam offenders. Aggregated results will be available later in the year from www.scamwatch.gov.au

More information on scams

More information about scams can be found in The Little Black Book of Scams published by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, call 1300 302 502 or visit their website www.accc.gov.au

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Other useful websites or kits (see individual agencies also)

SCAMwatch

A site to help you recognise, report and protect yourself from scams. Explore SCAMwatch to find out more about the scams that target you or your small business. SCAMwatch is the campaign portal for the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce.
www.scamwatch.gov.au

NetAlert

NetAlert is the Australian Government’s cyber-safety website. The site includes advice and resources on Internet scams, identity theft, spam and other online cyber-safety related issues.
www.netalert.gov.au

Protect your financial identity

This website provides information for the public about how to protect your financial identity in everyday life and minimise the damage if a problem occurs. This website has been developed by the Australian Bankers Association, the Australian High Tech Crime Centre and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
www.protectfinancialid.org.au

FIDO

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission website for consumers and investors includes warnings about financial scams, lists of illegal investments and unlicensed overseas callers promoting investment opportunities, tips on managing money, and information on how to complain. It also features case studies about people who were made financial offers that were too good to be true.
www.fido.gov.au

Stay smart online

The Australian Government’s e-security website for home users and small businesses. The site has a range of information and resources, including quizzes, guides, tools, tips and advice on how to use the Internet safely and confidently.
www.staysmartonline.gov.au

ID Theft Booklet – Protecting Your Identity

A booklet produced by the Attorney-General’s Department to help Australians prevent, and deal with, identity theft. The Booklet is about how to prevent, and respond to, identity theft. It provides practical strategies on how individuals can protect themselves from becoming victims of identity theft, and what to do if they become a victim of this crime.
www.ag.gov.au/identitysecurity

February 12, 2010 Posted by | Business, Consume, Consumer Scams, government resources, Real Estate, Research sites, Seminars, Share Trading, State Resources, Superannuation, Training | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spotting a Business or Franchise Scam

We are really blissed when it comes to information online about spotting scams in businesses or franchises. Here is an example of some government websites;

Federal Trade Commission has examples of business scams:

http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/franchise/tsweep02.shtm

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has the franchising code here:

http://www.accc.gov.au/content/index.phtml/tag/franchisingcode/

A great new one to me I just found is Fido, built by the Australian government, it gives you financial tips and safety checks:

http://www.fido.gov.au/fido/fido.nsf/byHeadline/Scams%20-%20types%20of%20scams

Also another site from a great business leader Brad Sugars:

http://www.actioncoach.com/bradsugars/how-to-spot-a-franchise-scam.php

The information is there so why are people continually scammed? Is it that they just don’t read this or is it that they are not really educated in how to spot scams or even how to spot a business opportunity? It’s a lot of both and can vary, Roy McDonald refers to a percentage of the population being 95% as having no or near nothing in the way of financial education. If Roy can say 95% with confidence we can say it’s that most people just don’t know and wouldn’t be able to spot the difference between a working profitable business, a working unprofitable business and a complete and utter scam.

Spotting a franchise or business scam is left to the government to police and they can be just as bad at spotting them as the general public. Have they ever had the experience of running businesses or doing the due diligences of investing in a new business opportunity on a on going basis? Not really and they shouldn’t need to! Everything should be fine people should not rip other people off and the world is perfect. Well in some peoples eyes that is the case because that is their point of view and that is where we can get unstuck as well. If you think any business or franchise will fit your personality then you will be in for a surprise when the business fails, because you don’t fit the role that supports the growth of the business. This has added another aspect to the equation and makes it even more complicated, you may be tearing your hair out right now though if your look at some of Roger Hamilton’s work  it makes the process of avoiding a scam simple. Roger Hamilton has a great system for budding business owners, its called the Wealth Dynamics Profile Test. This test will help you find out who you really are as a business owner and will show you where you are strong and where you are weak. As Roy McDonald puts it so gracefully; “If you understand yourself, then you can understand where best to excel in every endeavor”.

I’m going to be bold and say if you really don’t understand your personality and how you relate to others is business then you should not go into business, it is really that important to know yourself, if you don’t you maybe be left thinking that you have been scammed. So check out the Wealth Dynamics Profile Test and see how to best work in your flow.

February 10, 2010 Posted by | Business, Business Buying, Business Selling, Business Seminars, Business Trading, Consume, Consumer Scams, Courses, Seminars, Training | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment