Here's a news release from Deputy Craig Chamberlin, spokesman for the Spokane County Sheriff's Office:
On Monday, June 4th, 2012, the Liberty Lake Police Department Contacted a magazine company called Strickly Business 1. The company was attempting to sell magazine subscriptions door to door without a license and was issued criminal citations for Soliciting Without a License. Salesman told Liberty Lake Officers they recently came from the Seattle area.
These types of magazine sales companies have surfaced in Spokane County several times in the past couple months. Investigators from the Better Business Bureau have warned consumers that these types of companies are required to be registered with the Secretary of The State's Office and required to obtain a business license for such types of sales.
These types of companies have gained the attention of Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna, whose office sent out the following release:
Guess who is back in town? It’s the door-to-door magazine sellers from out of state who appear on doorsteps claiming outrageously priced subscriptions will help fund “second chance” opportunities for inner city youth. The Washington Attorney General’s Office has issued warnings about such visitors before, and is again alerting consumers to beware of these solicitors and think twice before buying their magazines.
The Attorney General’s Office has received numerous complaints from victimized consumers who paid $50 to $784 for magazine subscriptions purchased from door-to-door sellers. Consumers say they were touched by the solicitors’ stories and believed their purchases would be for a good cause. Solicitors claim to be earning money for college, working toward a better job, receiving points for a free trip, or contributing proceeds to help homeless youth.
“Unfortunately, another common theme is that time and again, consumers throughout the country never receive the magazines they purchased, or hear from the sellers again, and have no idea what happened to their money.” said Attorney General Rob McKenna.
Many of these solicitors claim to work for “business or job training” companies that send young adults door to door to give them a “fresh start” on life. In a recent complaint to the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division, one seller claimed to represent a company called “Strictly Business.” The consumer did his own checking and found the company was based in Texas. It had a Better Business Bureau rating of “F” for failing to respond to complaints and failing to deliver magazines.
“Besides the potential of falling victim to fraud, there are many other risks involved, such as threats to personal safety or the possibility of being a victim of identity theft. It all makes buying items from strangers who knock on your door a bad idea,” added McKenna.
Consumers should always check out a charity with the Secretary of State prior to making a donation. A state search engine listing registered charities is available at www.secstate.wa.gov/charities.
Many of these sales people claim they are raising money for school fundraisers, which is usually not true. If you are contacted by these types of sales people you are urged to contact the Better Business Bureau at 509-232-0579 to verify the validity of the company