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Consumer Advisory - Moving Company Fraud Puts Consumers At Risk

Released on December 16, 2016

The Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority warns consumers to be cautious when selecting moving companies online.

Fraudsters are alleged to be impersonating legitimate companies or using misleading language in paid ads to take advantage of consumer trust in well established brands.

Tactics employed in the impersonation scam vary, but include placement of misleading ads that feature the names of well-known, reputable businesses or a similarly-named business to redirect web traffic to a third-party website.  Allegations also include the hacking of social media accounts to change contact information like phone numbers and e-mails.

Consumers should confirm if the company they’ve hired has insurance.  Professional moving companies have insurance to cover property loss/damage and workers’ compensation to ensure the homeowner is not liable for injuries.

Red flags:
  • Online search results display a URL address that does not match the company name; and
  • Quotes are substantially lower than competitor prices.
Protect yourself:
  • Check with the Canadian Association of Movers online directory at www.mover.net;
  • Get price quotes from at least three sources;
  • Ask for customer references; and
  • Check with the Better Business Bureau and research the company you want to do business with at www.bbb.org/saskatchewan/.
If you think you are the target of a moving scam, keep records of the transaction, phone numbers, the name of the sales representatives, website or additional identification information and contact the Consumer Protection Division at consumerprotection@gov.sk.ca or toll free: 1-877-880-5550.

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For more information, contact:

Matthew Barton
Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority 
Regina
Phone: 306-787-6067
Email: matthew.barton@gov.sk.ca

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