(printed by permission of the Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South)
Today's Difficult Economic Times Spur More Fraudulent Debt Relief Offers
March 23, 2009, Memphis, TN - The BBB is warning consumers about a company called Financial Freedom Rewards. It appears to be some kind of debt relief, loan, or identity theft scam - or all of them.
Randy Hutchinson, the President of the BBB, received an unsolicited phone call from the company and talked to three different people. They made various misrepresentations, including that:
When Mr. Hutchinson asked if there was a fee for getting a lower interest rate, the company representative said there was "no out of pocket expense". When Mr. Hutchinson continued to probe about what the cost was and why the lender would lower the rate, the representative hung up on him.
Mr. Hutchinson called a number he was given several times, but always got a recording saying that all agents are busy and that the caller should leave a message. No one has called back. There is no location information on the website, although one representative said they are located in Winter Park, FL. Ironically, there is an unauthorized BBB logo on the banking page of the company's website - www.financialfreedomrewards.com.
Because of the difficult economic times, the BBB is seeing more scams offering some kind of debt relief or consolidation. We urge consumers who may be having financial problems to talk to their lenders and to non-profit credit counselors rather than respond to unsolicited phone calls offering deals that are too good to be true.