March 14, 2014 10:05
National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW) is a federal program designed to highlight current issues and help customers improve their ability to combat fraud.
During NCPW, federal, state, and local consumer protection agencies, together with consumer organizations and industry associations, launch consumer protection and education efforts around the country.
On March 15, 2014, the United States Postal Inspection Service and the Portland Police Bureau are sponsoring a shred event at the Portland Police Bureau's Southeast Precinct, located at 4735 East Burnside Street.
The event will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., or until the truck is filled.
Consumers can bring up to two boxes or bags of documents to be shredded.
This year, the Postal Service and the Postal Inspection Service are partnering with AARP, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people 50 and older, to educate consumers about foreign lottery schemes that target older Americans.
The goals for NCPW are:
* Increase the awareness of older Americans and their caregivers about the dangers of foreign lottery schemes.
* Give consumers valuable information about protecting their assets from fraudsters.
* Provide a central location where consumers can report suspected fraud.
Anyone can be a victim of foreign lottery fraud, but scammers often seek out those whom they perceive as vulnerable. Increasingly, their victims include older Americans and cognitively challenged individuals. These crimes can seriously affect the lives of victims and their families.
During NCPW, Postal Inspectors will discuss how Americans can avoid becoming the latest victims of this crime. Foreign lottery scammers talk a good game. They ask victims to pay to play - by wire, check, money order, or cash. They try to get consumers to send money that's just for "taxes and fees."
The Postal Inspection Service is warning older Americans and caregivers to beware - in a foreign lottery, it's more than just the odds against you. If you are contacted to play a foreign lottery by mail, email, or telephone; do the following:
* Hang up the phone, don't respond to the email, or shred the solicitation.
* Don't give out personal or financial information to anyone over the Internet or phone.
* Never wire or send money to anyone, anywhere who says you have won a foreign lottery.
* Don't let anyone pressure you into making an immediate decision.
* Never purchase anything until you get all the information in writing.
Foreign lotteries aren't just a risky proposition; under most circumstances, they're also illegal. A federal statute prohibits mailing lottery tickets, advertisements, or payments to purchase tickets in a foreign lottery.
An educated public is the first line of defense.
for helpful information on how to protect yourself, and your loved ones, from fraud.
Sgt. Pete Simpson
Portland Police Bureau
1111 SW 2nd Ave, Suite 1526
Portland, Oregon 97204