Office Supply Scammers Out to Get You?The Federal Trade Commission has cracked down on office supply scammers at an increasing rate in the past 15 years, and yet these schemers still take advantage of businesses every year. Are you getting scammed?

Office supply scammers work by calling businesses—generally small or newer businesses—and using high-pressure sales tactics to sell non-durable and consumable products at a grossly inflated cost. In most cases, the product is shipped to the company without an order being placed, and then the over-priced payment is demanded.

How to Avoid Scammers

It can be tricky to know exactly who you’re working with when you encounter over-the-phone scammers. Here are a few tips to keep your company from losing money.

1. Buy Only from a Trusted Source

Hands down, the best way to stay safe from office supply scammers is to work with only one trusted vendor for all of your office supply ordering. Make sure employees know you don’t make orders over the phone with companies you’re not familiar with, even if it sounds like a good deal.

2. Consolidate and Simplify Supply Ordering

Put one person in charge of ordering and keep a detailed record of purchases, shipments, and payments. When a telemarketer calls, instruct employees to say, “I’m not authorized to handle ordering. Would you like to speak to ____?”

3. Know Your Rights

If you didn’t order something, you don’t have to pay for it. The law allows you to treat an unordered product as a gift—just make sure no honest mistakes were made.

4. Research the Organization

You can check with the Attorney General or Better Business Bureau to find out if a company has been scamming businesses, but remember that sometimes these records aren’t updated. If a new scam is just beginning, the Attorney General and BBB will appreciate you notifying them.

As always, we here at Valley Office Systems are proud to serve your company. Contact us today for more information.

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