Oregon Department of Justice

Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum

Oregon Department of Justice - Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum
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Top Ten Consumer Complaints for 1999

February 16, 2000

Attorney General Hardy Myers today announced the Department of Justice's Top Ten Consumer Complaint list for 1999. Consumer complaints about telecommunications problems - mainly telephones and associated services - topped the list. Problems relating to the Internet were the ninth most frequently reported consumer problem

Myers unveiled the list in Eugene at the Department of Justice's Sixth Annual Scam Jam consumer protection conference. "We focused Scam Jam 2000 on the Internet this year because this technology is rapidly overtaking the television as the communication and information household appliance of choice for many consumers," Myers said. "Law enforcement and consumers both need to be better educated about the benefits and the risks of the Internet."

1.Long Distance Companies979
2.Travel Industry483
3.Construction Contractors443
4.Financial Institutions374
5.Used Car Dealers370
6.New Car Dealers357
7.Auto Repair332
8.Sweepstakes, Lotteries, Games of Chance312
9.Internet Related Complaints286
10.Pyramids, Chain Letters, Multi-level Marketing277

The type of telecommunications complaints changed from last year's report. In the last report, 1,393 consumers complained that they had been "slammed" - involuntarily switched from one long distance company to another. In the report released by Myers today, only 315 consumers complained of slamming. "We have prosecuted over a dozen companies for slamming," Myers said.

The Department of Justice received a total of 9,511 written complaints between January 1999 and January 2000. The Department also received more than 61,000 telephone inquiries. In addition, approximately 10,000 users visited the consumer protection pages of the Department's website at www.doj.state.or.us.

Consumers who want to file a complaint may call the Attorney General's toll-free, consumer hotline at 1-877-877-9392 or (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only) or

(503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or write Financial Fraud/Consumer Protection, 1162 Court Street, N.E., Salem, Oregon 97310.

Contact:

Jan Margosian, (503) 947-4333 (media line only) jan.margosian@doj.state.or.us |
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