Okla. AG Releases Top Ten Consumer Complaint List

February 12, 2007

The Internet topped Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson’s list of sources for complaints to his office last year. The AG released his top ten list of consumer complaints recently at the state’s third annual Consumer Protection Day at the Capitol.

The Internet repeats its position at the top of the list, which is compiled by Edmondson’s Consumer Protection Unit (CPU). The CPU received more than 900 internet-related complaints in 2006.

“It’s important for consumers to know about the scams that plague our state,” Edmondson said. “It can be difficult at best to track down an Internet criminal. An ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure. We hope that by releasing this list, we are arming consumers with the information they need to protect themselves from the scams we see over and over again.”

The top ten list of consumer complaints for 2006 is as follows:

1. Internet
2. Credit
3. Automobile
4. Communications
5. Services (non-professional)
6. Sales (general)
7. Home Repair/construction
8. Health/medical
9. Lending/mortgage
10. Electronic equipment

Consumer Protection Day at the Capitol is sponsored by the attorney general’s office and AARP Oklahoma. The event was held in conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week, Feb. 4-10. This year’s theme was “Read Up and Reach Out: Be an Informed Consumer.”

For the second year, shredding services were provided on the Capitol grounds.

Edmondson said shredding sensitive personal or financial information is one way to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft.

“Identity theft is an ever-increasing problem for consumers and law enforcement alike,” Edmondson said. “Once your personal information is stolen, it can take years to repair the damage to your credit.”

In addition to destroying personal and financial documents, the attorney general gave the following tips for avoiding identity theft:

* Only provide financial information online to a secure Web site.
* Don’t give financial information over the telephone unless you initiated the call to a reputable business.
* Don’t store your social security card and unnecessary credit cards in your purse or wallet.
* If you feel your information has been stolen, close accounts you think may be at risk and contact local law enforcement and the Federal Trade Commission immediately.

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