Chris Holman welcomes Nakia Mills, Marketing Director, BBB - Better Business Bureau of Detroit & Eastern Michigan, Southfield, MI.
Watch Nakia and Chris discuss how the Better Business Bureau serves businesses across Michigan, and her group specifically eastern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula, along with what they're dealing with in 2023 and expect into 2024, in the YouTube video shared below:
In their conversation, Chris looked to find out several things from Nakia;
Share with us the 3 highlights from 2023?
And you have 7 notable things we should be on the outlook for in 2024?
Below are specifics and details on the 2023 Recap:
Online purchase scams made up nearly 50% of all scams reported in our service area for 2023 (nearly 47%), while employment scams (13.28%) and phishing (9.41%) round out the top 3 issues reported by consumers in Eastern Michigan and the U.P.
While these are the top 3, we also have to remember there are so many other types of scams reported - involving a range of manipulative ways to trick you out of your money. For instance, romance scams only accounted for less than 0.5% of scams reported, but those victims rank #2 when it comes to the amount of funds lost.
Overall, victims in our service area reported losing a total of nearly $2 million due to scams. The online purchase scams we mentioned account for nearly $1 million alone ($855,236.90). It is important to remember that both business and consumers can fall victim to online scammers.
Here are the points of a 2024 Outlook:
BBB is well-known as being the organization consumers think of after they have been scammed. In 2024 and beyond, we want to also remind both individuals and companies that BBB offers educational tools and resources to help protect yourself and your business from becoming a victim in the first place.
We are looking forward to holding business card exchanges, community speaking engagements and other types of events to keep both business and consumers informed about safe, smart ways to operate in the marketplace.
With online purchase scams remaining so prevalent, we will be putting effort into educating consumers on red flags related to the online marketplace. We want to see this number go down in 2024!
This interview is taking place during Identity Theft Awareness Week (Jan. 29 - Feb. 2) so it would make sense for us to mention this and share some cybersecurity tips.
We will also closely watch AI this year to help be sure consumers of all ages understand the importance of not trusting everything you see or hear without double-checking. The voice you hear on the end of the phone asking for emergency funds might not really be your friend who somehow got stuck oversees!
It's an election year, so we will work to keep consumers informed about ways to protect themselves from political scams. Emotions run high during the election season and scammers will try to get "donations" to support the causes they believe people are most passionate about.
Employment scams are on the rise, especially with the young adult population. These job seekers believe they've landed a job, but instead they've just handed over all their personal information to a scammer.
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