Minutes for January 11, 2017

Massachusetts Consumers’ Coalition

Meeting Minutes for January 11, 2017

16 people attended the January meeting of the Massachusetts Consumers’ Coalition. Chair Cindy Matloff called the meeting to order at 12:36 with an introduction of members.

GUEST SPEAKER – STEVE WEISMAN

Steve Weisman, a leading expert on scams and identity theft spoke about current scams and how to recognize/avoid them. His presentation focused on medical identity theft, skimmers, spearfishing, ransomware, and the use of strong passwords. Members are encouraged to visit: scamicide.com, Mr. Weisman’s website dedicated to providing the public with the latest information on scams.

SECRETARY’S REPORT

  • November meeting minutes were approved
  • Members were reminded to complete and return their 2017 membership form.
  • A lunch survey was distributed to ascertain lunch option preferences.

TREASURER’S REPORT

The Coalition checking account balance is $2,507.83

OLD BUSINESS

Website: The Coalition web site is up and running. Members should check the website for meeting dates and announcements.

NEW BUSINESS

Upcoming MCC Programs: The Guest Speaker program was discussed and scheduled. It was confirmed that Peter Downing, AAG will speak about the Attorney General’s Debt Collection clinic program at the March meeting. Charles Carroll, Director of the Division of Standards will speak about the enforcement of laws, rules and regulations relating to weights and measures in May, and MASSPIRG will be asked to speak in the fall.

Consumer Agency Updates: 

Cambridge Consumers’ Council. Laura Nichols announced that Cambridge Consumers’ Council will be hosting a shred day on March 11th for National Consumer Protection Week.

Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation. Shannon Desmond announced that Office of Consumer Affairs has updated 11 of their consumer guides: ID Theft; Shopping Rights; Managing Credit and Debt; 30-Day Demand Letter; Home Improvement Contracting; Small Claims Court; Tenants Rights and Responsibilities; Landlord Rights and Responsibilities; Lemon Law; Lemon Aid Law; and Used Vehicle Warranty Law. Please contact Shannon or Robin if you need to replenish your supply.

Consumer World. Edgar Dworsky alerted members to a new consumer survey on Auto Play Ads that Consumer World planned to release on January 17th. The general consensus – consumers hate the ads. To see the survey results go to: http://www.consumerworld.org/pages/autoplay-ads.htm

Meeting adjourned at 1:45 pm

Next Meeting is Wednesday, March 15, 2017

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