Court Bans Credit Card Protection Marketer

A federal court in Phoenix yesterday banned a company from using telemarketing to promote credit card protection services after accusations of fraud by the Federal Trade Commission.

Source One Publications Inc., an Arizona corporation, also was ordered to pay a $200,000 bond before engaging in any other telemarketing activities. Source One and its officer, Courtney Ann Wiggs, were charged in a 1999 law enforcement sweep of phony credit-card protection scams, the FTC said.

Wiggs and her company are accused of marketing useless credit card protection services, the FTC said. From December 1997 to August 1999, the company’s telemarketers told consumers that they would be liable for all unauthorized charges on their credit cards, when in fact federal law makes consumers liable for only $50 of unauthorized charges, according to the FTC complaint.

The company’s telemarketers falsely claimed that they were representatives of consumers’ credit card issuers, according to the FTC. The company also used false pretenses to obtain consumer credit card information and used the information without authorization, the FTC said.

The FTC said it might seek financial compensation from Wiggs pending the results of her bankruptcy proceedings.

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