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Business Supply Scams

Make sure you're too savvy to become a victim.

Watch out! As an entrepreneur, you are a target for one of the most common--and potentially most costly--business scams: telemarketing con artists selling overpriced, poor-quality office supplies. Here are some tips to protect your business.

  • The Federal Trade Commission requires telemarketers to disclose that it's a sales call, who they are and the total cost of what they're selling--so don't be afraid to ask.
  • Make sure your employees are scam-aware and establish a procedure for handling such calls.
  • Keep track of all orders, and limit the number of staff who are allowed to order.
  • If you receive merchandise you didn't order--and the seller cannot prove you did-you can keep the materials and are not obligated to pay.

Excerpted from Start Your Own Business: The Only Start-Up Guide You'll Ever Need

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