BUYING A SMALL BUSINESS

Fax Scam Targets Business Owners

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Jan. 6, 2006--Business owners beware. If you recently received an unsolicited fax asking if you want to sell your company, you might want to feed it to your paper shredder.

The ads, which offer to conduct an on-site evaluation of your company with the goal of connecting you with interested buyers around the world, have drawn the attention of law enforcement officials in both Kansas and Missouri.

Several Kansas business owners in the Wichita area that received similar offers appear to be victims of fraud. The Wichita Police Department, working in conjunction with the U.S. Secret Service, is now investigating several offending companies that apparently charged several thousands dollars for services that they never delivered on.

One company in particular, Global Business Acquisitions, based in Boynton Beach, Fla., has been targeted by both Missouri and Kansas authorities. The company, which law enforcement officials say may also operate under the names United Acquisitions Group, The American Group or the USA Group, was recently fined by the Federal Communications Commission for its illegal faxes.

Since sending unsolicited ads is illegal under FCC regulations Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon filed lawsuits in November against 13 companies that approached businesses in 11 counties.

Anyone with information related to the scam are encouraged to contact the Wichita Police Department or the U.S. Secret Service.

Last updated: Jan 5, 2006

DARREN DAHL

Darren Dahl is a contributing editor at Inc. magazine, which he has written for since 2004. He also works as a collaborative writer and editor and has partnered with several high-profile authors. Dahl lives in Asheville, North Carolina.




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