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11 Call For Action Special Edition: A conversation with the state attorney general

Katie Pelton and Attorney General Weiser
Katie Pelton and Attorney General Weiser(KKTV)
Published: Nov. 26, 2021 at 8:10 AM MST
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - From holiday travel to scam protection, 11 Call For Action investigator Katie Pelton sat down with Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser to talk about the most pressing issues facing consumers in 2021.

Pelton: “We’ve seen some major airlines dealing with delays and cancellations in recent weeks. What can you do as a passenger if this happens to you?”

Weiser: “I’ve got a couple of points. The first is know your rights. If your flight is canceled or changed and you didn’t ask for it, you’re entitled to a credit, and often the changes will happen in ways you never would have wanted. You might have paid for a ticket that was a one-way and you get rebooked for the same price in what would have been a lower rate originally because you’re flying through somewhere else. Don’t take it. You can call us up, you have to complain, but you can get satisfaction. If you can’t get satisfaction from the airline, you can let our office know about it at StopFraudColorado.gov and also the Department of Transportation who oversees the airlines. We’ve seen these sorts of shenanigans where people got a credit and couldn’t use it and were mistreated, we need consumers to be vigilant. We’ll have your back.”

Pelton: “We are seeing supply issues and demands. What advice do you have for consumers this season?”

Weiser: “People need to be resilent and adaptive. What does that mean? It means that you’ve got to plan ahead. It also means you may not get your first choice for Christmas gift this year because supply chains are, as you note, strained. What we can do is be creative, be innovative.”

Pelton: “Now let’s switch gears -- let’s talk about the number one scam you’ve seen this year during the pandemic, unemployment fraud filings.”

Weiser: “What it looks like is a ridiculous number. We think as many as 1.5 million Coloradans have been told that they’ve filed for unemployment insurance and it was all a scam. Here’s what’s happening: people are getting your information through the dark web, through other data breaches that have happened, and they’re using it to file on your behalf.

“So we’ve got a task force to go after these criminals who are taking money that doesn’t belong to them and we’re putting so many Coloradans in jeopardy. If you have gotten one of these notices, what you need to know if your identity is vulnerable, and we need you to get an identity theft repair kit. We’ve created one in our office. You can get it at StopFraudColorado.gov because you’re vulnerable to this scam and others.”

Pelton: “There are ways to protect yourself.”

Weiser: “This is important: When a scammer can get your Social Security number, your bank account number, even your mom’s maiden name, they are going to find ways to use it against you. So when someone calls your or emails you and they start asking questions, don’t answer. If you’re getting personal information requests over the phone, chances are it’s from a scammer or to aid a scammer. So protect yourself, be vigilant, and if you see something that’s at all off, walk away and report it to StopFraudColorado.gov.”

You can report scams and fraud to the Colorado Attorney General’s Office statewide consumer helpline: 800-222-4444.

Click here to watch the 11 Call For Action half-hour special edition: Top scams and consumer issues of 2021.

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