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Phony directories, yellow pages among top scam, BBB reports

November 15, 2010

Phony directories or yellow page scams, which usually target small- to medium-sized businesses, were reported by the Better Business Bureau of Chicago as among the area’s top scams of 2008.

The scam manifests itself with solicitors calling businesses and seeking to verify the company’s name and physical location; and allegedly calling to "renew" or "re-enroll" an existent yellow pages listing or advertisement. Many companies or their employees are misled into accepting the alleged "renewals."

The BBB of Chicago and Northern Illinois recommends three easy-to-remember general rules to avoid being a victim of a scam:  Don’t pay upfront fees for promised services; always confirm who is asking for personal or financial information; and, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Other "Top 10" scams of 2008:

• Check scams
• Advance fee lenders
• Mortgage Foreclosure Rescue scams
• Illegitimate credit repair & debt negotiation services
• Work at home and fraudulent employment opportunities
• Phishing and fake e-cards
• Mystery/secret shopping scam
• Grant & government job finding entities
• Deceptive weight loss products advertising