Classmates Settlement

Attorney General Doug Peterson, along with the Attorneys General of 21 states announced today that Classmates, Inc. (“Classmates”), along with Florists’ Transworld Delivery, Inc. and FTD.com Inc. (collectively “FTD”), have agreed to pay $11 million to settle allegations that the companies engaged in misleading advertising and billing practices.  The State of Nebraska’s portion of these settlement funds is $210,651.77. 
The Attorneys General allege Classmates and FTD engaged in misleading, unfair, and deceptive practices in violation of state consumer protection laws. Specifically, the Attorneys General’s investigation focused on the companies’ relationships with third-­‐parties who used negative option marketing practices to sell membership programs to consumers doing business online with Classmates and FTD.  Negative option marketing is a sales practice in which a seller treats a consumer’s failure to take an affirmative action, either to reject an offer or cancel an agreement, as assent to be charged for goods or services.

National Consumer Protection Week 2015

In honor of National Consumer Protection Week, which kicks off Sunday March 1st, Attorney General Doug Peterson urges Nebraskans to take a few minutes to learn about the free and beneficial services available through the Consumer Protection Division of the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office. 
 
The Consumer Protection Division enforces state consumer protection laws against those engaging in fraudulent, deceptive, unconscionable and unfair trade acts and practices that affect Nebraska. It also mediates thousands of complaints from individual consumers and issues alerts on emerging consumer protection issues. In addition to enforcement and mediation services, the office provides educational outreach services focused on preventing the victimization of Nebraskans by arming them with tools to detect, deter and defend against consumer fraud. 

Lightning Rod Scam

Attorney General Doug Peterson is urging consumers to be wary of any uninvited person or persons coming to your home offering to install a new lightning rod system or inspect any existing lightning rod system.  Door-to-door sales scams try to trick you into acting immediately, before you have time to shop around. Red flags should go up if a door-to-door salesperson pressures you to make an immediate decision or pay cash in advance.
 
A current scheme affecting Nebraskans involves the sale and installation of lightning rod systems. Local authorities investigating the scams have reported that consumers are being charged an exorbitant amount of money, in some cases upwards of $10,000, for equipment that costs very little and may be unnecessary.

Text Message Imposter Scam

Attorney General Doug Peterson is issuing a consumer alert for Nebraskans to be wary of scam text messages. Consumers may be receiving text messages purporting to be from Great Western Bank, warning that their account has been blocked. The message contains a link that opens up a webpage requesting the customer's online banking ID and password. The text and the website may look legitimate, but they are not. This is a fraudulent text message attempting to compromise your online user credentials to gain access to other identifying information. If you receive this unsolicited text message, do not reply or click on the web link and delete it immediately.