Your Business

Background Checks: Tips for Job Applicants and Employees

Applying for a job? Here’s what to know about background checks and consumer reports. Find out when an employer can conduct a background check and what they can ask. Learn about steps employers must take before they use a background check and what to do if an employer finds something negative. Get tips about different types of background checks – criminal history, credit reports/financial information, or medical conditions. Learn what to do if you think an employer used a background check to discriminate against you based on race, national origin, color, sex, religion, disability or age.

Business Opportunities: Avoiding Vending Machine & Display Rack Scams (WI)

Some business opportunities offer to pay you to service vending machines or display racks.  Some are legitimate, but many are risky investments with no guarantee you'll make a profit. Read more

Business Opportunities: Multilevel Marketing (WI)

Want to “be your own boss,” “work from home,” or just “make extra money?” You may be tempted by an advertisement for a business opportunity, but before you open your checkbook, check out the offer.

Checking the Reliability or Reputation of a Business (GA)

How do you know whether the company you are considering doing business with is reliable and trustworthy?  If you have doubts, check before you write that check! Get tips from the Georgia Governor's Office of Consumer Protection.

Consumer Law Information (AL)

This page provides links to some of Alabama’s most frequently requested consumer-related laws. This is not an exhaustive list of all Alabama consumer laws. Please remember this Office cannot serve as your attorney or give you legal advice.  The following laws, as well as many other consumer laws, may be accessed through this website.

You may access The Code of Alabama here.

Consumer Privacy

Does your company make privacy claims? Reread your privacy policy to make sure you're honoring its promises. Savvy businesses understand it's important to be clear about what they do with consumers' personal information. Read more

Cutting Standing Timber (WI)

One of Wisconsin’s most valuable resources is often found on private property. Unfortunately, timber and woodlot owners often don’t know the value of their standing timber and problems arise after agreements are made with loggers. Read more.

Disposal of Your Personal Records by a Business (GA)

Your personal information is important in every aspect of your life.  It's essential to be careful about sharing information, so it doesn't fall into the wrong hands. Georgia law regulates the proper disposal of business records that contain personal information.

Endorsements

Do you use endorsements or testimonials in your marketing? Do they meet the standards of the FTC Act and the Endorsement Guides? Find out more by consulting FTC compliance resources.

Fraud Against Small Businesses (WI)

Small businesses are the targets of fraudulent or deceptive sales practices including business opportunities, office supply scams, and phony billing schemes.  This guide explains the scams and how to handle them.  

Green Guides

If you are a business that makes claims about the environmental benefits of your products, you must back them up with competent and reliable scientific evidence. The FTC's Green Guides explain how truth-in-advertising principles apply to green claims.

IDTheftInfo.org

Consumer Federation of America’s www.IDTheftInfo.org website is an easy-to-use gateway for information about identity theft from CFA and other good sources. In addition to consumer resources, the website provides advice for businesses about data security and features CFA’s Best Practices for Identity Theft Services, which businesses can use as a guide when selecting identity theft services for their customers or employees.

Internet-Based Business Opportunities (WI)

Internet businesses sound like the perfect job: be your own boss, set your own hours, and work from home.  In truth, most require a lot of time and money, and few succeed.  Investigate internet business opportunities as carefully as you would any other business opportunity.  

 

 

Invention Marketing (WI)

Hundreds of inventors and entrepreneurs introduce new ideas to the public each year. Some are highly successful; others are not. Knowing how to get started is an important first step toward reaching success.

Marketing Your Mobile App: Get It Right from the Start

Maybe you want to get in on the growing app business.  Maybe you work for an exciting start-up or on your own.  Regardless of the size of your business, the Federal Trade Commission has guidelines to help you comply with truth-in-advertising standards and basic privacy principles. Read more

National Consumer Protection Week Video

Watch and share this video to find out more about National Consumer Protection Week and how you can help the people you know fight fraud and scams.

Secrets of Mystery Shopping Revealed (WI)

You may have gotten emails or ads claiming you'll earn a living as a mystery shopper while dining at elegant restaurants, shopping at pricey stores, or checking into luxurious hotels. However, marketers who promote these jobs often don't deliver on their promises. Read more.

Small Business Web Page

This FDIC website has useful information for small business owners, including information about access to loans, and an online form for submitting questions or registering concerns.

The Business Center (FTC)

The Business Center, from the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, provides tools to help you and your business understand and comply with the law. Search for information by topic - Advertising & Marketing, Credit & Finance, Privacy & Security - or by industry.

The Connecticut Contractor for Home Improvement and New Home Construction (CT)

Information for contractors doing business in Connecticut.

The Seminar Pitch: A Real Curveball (WI)

Seminar hucksters say they’ll give you valuable information about how to invest successfully or operate a profitable business. Consumers who invest in these “opportunities” often find the pay-off isn’t as promised and they can’t recoup the money they spent. Read more

Thinking About Buying a Franchise?

Buying a franchise is a major financial investment and a serious personal commitment.

Thinking About Buying a Franchise?

Buying a franchise is a major financial investment and a serious personal commitment.

Unwanted Faxes: What You Can Do (WI)

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA) and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules prohibit sending unsolicited advertisements, also known as “junk faxes,” to a fax machine. This prohibition applies to fax machines at both businesses and residences. Read more

Work-at-Home Schemes (WI)

Ads for envelope stuffing, making craft items, government employment, secret shopper, medical billing and other business schemes promise consumers hundreds to thousands of dollars a month for an investment of a few dollars. But complaints by consumers show the result is usually the same – consumers lose their money. Read more.

Working with Professional Fundraisers (WI)

If your organization is considering working with a professional fundraiser, you have an obligation and a responsibility to the public to account for all funds collected and to ensure the fundraising is conducted in an honest, straightforward, and legal manner. Read more