Aug. 24, 2019 — As part of her visit for this week’s Coastal Caucus, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum visited the Florence Rotary Club at the Florence Events Center on Tuesday, where she discussed the Oregon Department of Justice’s (ODOJ) focus on scam prevention in order to level the playing field for Oregon businesses.
According to Rosenblum, because traditional methods of making a legal case through direct testimony, circumstantial evidence and following the money don’t normally apply to the digital world of scam artists, the consumer protection division at the ODOJ is pushing for education and prevention, especially since catching scam artists comes with so many barriers.
“We think if we can prevent, if we can make people aware, then we actually believe that we are saving a lot of money for people,” Rosenblum said.
She went on to explain how, when the public is well informed on scams, they can be avoided, which in turn frees up time for the ODOJ to focus on the business development of Oregon.
“While Rotary provides the nuts and bolts of business development through networking whereby you can all help each other, my organization, the Oregon Department of Justice, promotes business development in another way: by working to create a level playing field for all commercial activity in our state,” Rosenblum said.
She went on to talk about how the ODOJ cannot work to create a level playing field for Oregon businesses if the department is spending time catching scam artists. That is why ODOJ goes to great lengths to educate consumers to avoid scams and other fraudulent transactions.
Through the course of protecting consumers, they are also helping the business community as well. With events such as last month’s Scam Jam, which was free and open to the public, attendees are taught how to stay safe from frauds and scams.
Rosenblum said the ODOJ creates a level playing field “primarily through our consumer protection activities, which could also be called business protection efforts. That’s because whenever a scam artist or a fraudulent business takes advantage of an Oregonian, they’re doing two things: one is that they are obtaining an unfair advantage over you and your legitimate business interests. And the other is that they’re hurting your customers. Neither is good for business development here or anywhere else.”
The ODOJ also has a scam alert program where individuals sign up to receive emails detailing scams the ODOJ is aware of.
For more information on the scam alert program as well as tips on how to spot and avoid scams, visit oregonconsumer.gov.