31 Aug

Don’t be Caught – Latest Phishing Scam

By Kimberly DorrisGraves’ Disease & Thyroid Foundation

with Karen JayneStardust Nonprofit Building Supplies

Phishing scams – in which criminals attempt to collect your personal data by sending fraudulent emails – are often easy to spot.  Misspelled words, poor grammar, and requests for sensitive information (such as password or account number) are all good indicators that an e-mail really isn’t from your bank, your gym, or your credit card company.

But would you be able to spot a scam if you received an official looking notice via regular mail at your place of business?  ONE member Stardust Non-Profit Building Supplies recently received an official looking document in the mail from “Compliance Filing Service”.  The form stated that Arizona law required that the completed form – along with a $150 filing fee – be sent to an address on 24th Street in Phoenix.  The form referenced Arizona Revised Statutes 10-701 (which addresses annual meetings) and included a pre-filled section with the organization’s business address, as well as blank boxes asking for a listing of Board members and Officers.

A staffer at the Arizona Corporation Commission confirmed that the form is a scam and recommended contacting the state Attorney General’s Office.  The AG’s office stated that they are investigating the matter and recommended that any organization receiving this form file a complaint online at www.azag.gov or request a printed complaint form by calling 602-542-5763.

05 Aug

Warning – AZ Corporation Com. – Compliance Filings Services Scam

Posted at the request of Karen JayneStardust Nonprofit Building Supplies

The Arizona Corporation Commission (AZ CC) warns AZ business leaders about mailings from Compliance Filings Services (CFS) that solicits a $150 fee to file a company’s annual minutes. AZ CC is not affiliated with Compliance Filings Services.

AZ CC does not require this degree of fee and businesses are not required to file “annual minutes”.

CFS uses language in its solicitation that implies it is informing corporations of a legal requirement, and cites statutes that imply legitimacy. The solicitation includes the AZ CC file number assigned to the business with an official-looking filing deadline. A sample of the solicitation is posted on AZ CC’s website under Consumer Alerts.

If you have received this document, you are not required to reply.

26 Jan

Nonprofits – Don’t Be Taken In – Another Scam to Learn From

By Elizabeth Reich – Make-A-Wish® Arizona

We recently were targeted by a scam artist, and our bank tells us other non-profits have also been victims, so it seems like we should spread the word.

We were contacted in December by somebody from London who wanted to make a $30,000 donation to us in honor of his “Mum”. We researched the sender and he seemed to be legitimate as did the architectural firm in London that was in his signature block. When the cashier’s check arrived, with no accompanying paperwork, it was for $38,500.

The next day we were contacted by the original e-mail sender with a story about his accountant, who was now on vacation and unreachable, making a horrible mistake and sending us an extra $8,500 that had been promised to a family with a young child on dialysis. We were asked to send the $8,500 to the family. We agreed to send the $8,500 but only to the trust and to the account from which the original funds were drawn. The gentleman called us, very irate, and demanded the funds be sent that day to the family. We said we would be happy to wire the funds to the bank, but we could not send them to a third party. He got even more angry and threatened to take back the entire donation, but we stuck to our guns, and never heard from him again.

Of course we contacted our bank who knew about the scam and we were notified the next day that there was no known account for the cashier’s check. I hope no charities fell victim to this scam.