News/Events

Attorney General Alerts

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Scammers Targeting Funeral Homes

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Scammers Targeting Funeral Homes

Fri, Nov 6, 2020

LITTLE ROCK – The loss of a loved one is difficult enough for family as they make funeral arrangements, but scam artists have been targeting funeral homes to trick the businesses into giving the recently passed family member’s social security number and other personal information. Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s Office has identified scam artists posing as family members calling funeral homes seeking the social security number of “their beloved family member” to complete end-of-life arrangements.

“Scam artists have taken their skills to a new low by targeting families and businesses dealing with the heart-wrenching loss of our loved ones and causing long-term problems for the family and finances,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “I urge any funeral homes receiving calls demanding social security or personal information to hang up the phone and call my office immediately.”

Attorney General Rutledge released the following tips to help consumers and businesses avoid social security scams:

  • Establish policies and procedures. Protect consumer information and prevent consumer data breaches.
  • Train your staff. Make sure all employees know your office’s policy about consumer privacy protection and safeguards, when it comes to purchasing supplies, receiving goods, and invoicing.
  • Verify to clarify. Be wary of anybody who calls out of the blue claiming to be your regular supplier or client. Ask the caller to verify the account number or contact your supplier or client independently to confirm the authenticity of the information offered.
  • Consider adopting a policy where the company does not provide personal information over the phone without prior authorization
  • Be skeptical of any phone call requesting personal information, such as social security numbers, and verify the identity of the caller

For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer related issues, call the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at (800) 482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov.

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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Casting Your Vote  in 2020

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Casting Your Vote in 2020

Fri, Oct 23, 2020

LITTLE ROCK – Election Day 2020 is quickly approaching - a time when Arkansans have the opportunity to have their constitutional rights heard by making important decisions on candidates and issues being considered on the ballot. This year has brought forward challenges that have required additional precautions which will ensure all Arkansans are safe while executing their voting rights. Despite any concerns with the changes, it is important for Arkansans to know that the integrity of the election is preserved and that when a ballot is cast, it will be counted.

“Voting is one of the most important rights we have as Americans,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “We are blessed to live in a country with free and fair elections where our voice truly matters when we exercise our right to vote.”

Attorney General Rutledge released the following voter information list:

  1. Confirm your voting registration, location and precinct with your county clerk on your voter registration card or online at VoterView.org.
  2. Check with your County Clerk to view a sample ballot before you vote.
  3. Due to COVID-19, you may request an absentee ballot from the County Clerk’s office by printing an English or Spanish absentee ballot application and return it by mail or in person to your county clerk by October 27.
  4. The Arkansas Health Department issued a guidance for voters to protect themselves and others from COVID-19.
  5. Review candidate information and ballot issues by visiting the Secretary of State’s Elections website.
  6. Research ballot issues from a non-partisan source beforehand to be a more informed voter.
  7. Early voting for Arkansas began Monday, October 19th and will run through Monday, November 2nd, the day before Election Day. The polls are open on Monday through Friday 8am-6pm and Saturdays 10am-4pm with hours on Monday the 2nd at 8am to 5pm.

Absentee ballots must be returned to your County Clerk by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day, November 3. Military ballots must be post marked by Election Day and received by Friday, November 13.

For tips on what to expect at your polling location, you can review the Secretary of State’s Voting 101 Pocket Guide or if you would like to report a voting concern, please contact the State Board of Election Commissioners at (501) 682-1834 or visit arkansas.gov/sbec.

For more information about consumer-related issues, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at OAG@arkansasag.gov or visit ArkansasAG.gov.

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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Statewide Drug Take Back Day Scheduled for October 24

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Statewide Drug Take Back Day Scheduled for October 24

Wed, Oct 14, 2020
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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Operation Corrupt Collection: Nationwide Crackdown on Phantom and Abusive Debt Collection

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Operation Corrupt Collection: Nationwide Crackdown on Phantom and Abusive Debt Collection

Wed, Sep 30, 2020

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge along with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and more than 50 federal and state law enforcement partners announced today a nationwide law enforcement and outreach initiative called Operation Corrupt Collector. The goal of this initiative is to protect consumers in Arkansas and nationwide from phantom debt collection and abusive, threatening debt collection practices.

“Scammers are creative and conniving when trying to steal from Arkansans and I won’t stand for it,” said General Leslie Rutledge. “Operation Corrupt Collector is a nationwide effort to help Arkansans resist the high-pressure, deceptive tactics that lure them into repaying debts they don’t owe.”

Attorney General Rutledge released the following tips for consumers who receive abusive or misleading debt collection inquiries:

The Operation Corrupt Collector initiative includes 54 total enforcement actions brought by the FTC, other federal agencies, and various state agencies against debt collectors engaged in these illegal practices. In coordination with 46 states, Arkansas joins with the FTC in rolling out new information to help consumers know their rights when it comes to debt collection and what steps to take if they receive a call trying to collect on a debt that they do not recognize. The FTC has also created a new online dashboard with information about reports received from consumers on debts not owed and abusive and threatening collection practices. So far in 2020, the FTC has received more than 85,000 reports from consumers related to debt collection, and nearly 45 percent of those were related to debts the consumer did not owe or abusive and threatening practices.

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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Take a Pass on Fake Online Sellers

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Take a Pass on Fake Online Sellers

Thu, Sep 24, 2020

LITTLE ROCK – Over the last several years and as COVID-19 has changed Arkansans’ daily routines, shopping online has become the new normal when purchasing necessities, gifts and even school supplies. While many sites may look honest and trustworthy, they sometimes have no intention of delivering the product that has been advertised.

“Scam websites can take advantage of Arkansans through fake advertising on social media at unrealistic rock-bottom prices,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Consumers should be careful and avoid purchases from suspicious websites until they research the seller and determine whether the seller can be trusted.”

Attorney General Rutledge offers several tips for Arkansans shopping online.

  • Pay with a secure payment method such as a credit card or PayPal. Avoid wire transfers and gift card payments. Before entering personal information, confirm that any payment information provided online is through a secure website with a “lock” icon on the browser’s status bar and the letters “https” in the URL address.

For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer related issues, call the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at (800) 482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov.

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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Don’t Fumble When Buying Tickets This Year

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Don’t Fumble When Buying Tickets This Year

Mon, Sep 21, 2020

LITTLE ROCK - If Arkansans want to take in a live football game at any of our great in-state institutions this fall, it is going to be a much different experience than it has been in years past. Due to the novel coronavirus, many precautions have been implemented in an effort to keep students, student athletes, and fans safe when taking in the game. In addition to COVID-19, every year scammers often try to sell fake tickets to unsuspecting fans and Arkansans should be cautious when purchasing tickets from an unverified ticket broker. The stadium should be a safe haven for fans rather than for scammers.

“Football in Arkansas is a cherished tradition and it is worth protecting,” said Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “Whether you support the Razorbacks, Red Wolves, Bears or Boll Weevils, all Arkansans deserve to cheer for their favorite team while feeling safe and without worry of being taken advantage of by scammers.”

The Arkansas Department of Health issued the following directives for large outdoor sports venues during the upcoming football season.

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued the following tips to help Arkansans protect themselves when looking to buy game tickets during the upcoming football season.

  • Research the seller or broker with the Better Business Bureau and ensure it is a member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers.
  • A legitimate ticket broker will offer a refund policy. Only buy tickets from a reseller that provides clear details about the terms of the transaction.
  • Always use a credit card to make a ticket purchase because credit card laws provide buyers with some recourse if the tickets are fraudulent.
  • Check the seats ahead of time. Ask for section, row and seat numbers to avoid obstructed views and purchasing tickets that do not exist.
  • Stick with well-known ticket sellers who offer guarantees and policies that protect buyers and have the ability to investigate and restrict accounts of merchants who violate the policies.
  • If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Refuse to be rushed. Scam artists often try to hurry prospective buyers into making a decision.

According to AARP, nearly 5 million consumers receive fraudulent concert, sporting event or theme park tickets each year. We can all do our part by ensuring our neighbors, friends, and families are educated on the deceptive practices of scammers and ways to avoid them.

Consumers who think they may have purchased a counterfeit ticket can contact the National Association of Ticket Brokers at 630-510-4594 or the Arkansas Attorney General’s Public Protection Department.

For more information on other tips to avoid being scammed and other consumer-related issues, call the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at 800-482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov.

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