Victim Location 93015
Type of a scam Fake Invoice/Supplier Bill
A representative of this company came into my store in a Westfield mall. He said that Westfield hired the company just to ensure all the tenant’s fire alarms/smoke detectors were working properly. My store is small – I have one smoke detector. He looked at it, said it was fine – a 60 second "inspection," if that. He asked me to sign a form stating all was in working condition, and the bottom showed a $0.00 charge. Before signing, I made sure, and I asked, "There is no charge, right? I didn’t request a visit from you. Why do I need to sign this?" He replied that this was simply a courtesy visit requested by Westfield management, there is no charge since everything is working properly, and I needed to sign because they had to return the forms to Westfield as proof that they inspected each store. Seeing that the form was filled out with a $0.00 on the fee line, I signed. Now, a couple of weeks later, I received an invoice in the mail. The young man wrote a 29 in front of the $0.00 on the form I signed! The bill was for $290.00, even though it states that no repairs were needed and all was working properly! He was in my store for less than 5 minutes! This is fraud at it’s finest. I was completely unsuspecting, as I genuinely thought that it was at Westfield’s request. I had only been operating in the mall for about 7-8 months at this point. I was still learning the Westfield ways. I obviously must learn to be more discerning of companies looking to take advantage of small business owners. I will not be paying this bill, but I would like to report the scam this company is running. I would imagine that other businesses who have more employees wouldn’t have caught the scam and simply paid the invoice when it came in. However, because it was me he dealt with that day and me who pays the bills, I knew immediately that I got scammed.