ORLANDO, Fla. – This week, Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis launched an ambitious website to create a network of consumers who were contacted by various frauds, conmen and government impostors.
FraudFreeFlorida.com provides a complete summary of the latest con games making the rounds in the state of Florida, complete with the pitch and the target, which is usually all consumers, along with portals to report a new scam that may have showed up in an email or robocall.
“Florida is No. 1 in the United States for fraud. It’s No. 2 for identity theft,” Patronis said. “Those statistics to me are simply unacceptable.”
Patronis said his identity was stolen eight months ago and, in his view, there is a “population that is frustrated” by the constant attempts to steal personal information.
Patronis said he wants to build a network between consumers and the private sector to gather information and get it to the proper law enforcement agencies and to create awareness to deter the identity thieves.
“Last year alone in the United States, there was, identified, $900 million in fraud that took place," Patronis said. “I can’t remind people enough: If it sounds too good to be true, it is.”
Patronis said his team was working on the website up until Sunday night to make sure it would be ready for the March 4 debut.
The website is easy to use and highlights some of the top scams being reported in Florida and across the country. The key is News 6 viewers coming forward and reporting the scams they are experiencing.
“Being able to partner with News 6 is invaluable because we’re not only educating the public, but the public is making it known to the Legislature,” he said.
For more information, go to FraudFreeFlorida.com.