12 On Your Side Alert: Scam Stopper!

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - There is a new tool to help protect consumers from scams. It's a website called Scam Stopper. It is a joint effort between the Better Business Bureau and Western Union. The site could keep you from being the next victim of a scam.

Tom Gallagher, President and CEO of the Richmond BBB says the site was created with one main goal -- consumer protection. "These scams are vicious when they happen to young people, old people, anybody. It is taking real money from you," he says.

The BBB and Western Union both say they are committed to stopping fraud protecting consumers. "Western Union is a company that produces a tremendous amount of wire transfers. That is what they do and they do it legitimately but some of those wire transfers are part of some of the scams" Gallagher says.

The site is free and highlights the most common scams, explains how the scammers operate and allows you to report a scam. The BBB says keep in mind, just like consumers, crooks have access to the new site. "They go on and take a look at what the opposition is and then they meet it. They have a little half time meeting, probably get together and say let's try it this way, let's put a wrinkle on it," Gallagher says.

It's why you have to be extra careful and even more of a reason, consumer advocates say you need to visit the Scam Stopper site. While you are there you can also sign up to get scam alerts sent to your email. "We have also got a dynamic that is happening with people like me aging. The Boomer Generation is now more vulnerable," Gallagher says. It's a vulnerability that this new site is working to decrease for everyone.

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