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Better Business Bureau ®
Start With Trust®
Southern Arizona
Construction Businesses Targeted by Fax Scam
October 21, 2008

Better Business Bureau is alerting businesses across the country to a questionable fax purporting to be from the U.S. Department of Transportation. The fax is being sent to businesses in construction related fields asking for financial information in order to become a government contractor. 

BBB has confirmed with U.S. DOT that this is a scam.  The "fax" number in the letter is actually a cell phone in the Washington D.C. area.

The letter is on U.S. DOT stationary, with the header stating:

U.S. Department of Transportation
Procurement Office
400 Seventh St., S.W.
Washington, DC 20590
www.dot.gov

The body of the letter states:

Dear Sirs                                                                                        October 20, 2008

Our records show that you are currently registered as a prospective contractor for procurements issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation.  However after reviewing your record we have noticed that you have not submitted your financial information release form.

Your financial institution’s privacy policy may not allow it to release your financial information even to government institutions without your consent; therefore we must have such form on file before we can move on with any procurement decisions.

In November 2008, the procurement plan for the first quarter of 2009 will be finalized.  To be eligible for procurement with the U.S. Department of Transportation, you must submit the abovementioned form to us by fax at 202-280-1353.

Please make sure your fax is preceded by a cover page so we may correctly identify your company.

Sincerely yours, 
Jennifer Donaldson,
Senior Procurement Officer

BBB reminds businesses and consumers never to give out financial information unless you verify that the person/company you are giving it to is who they say they are.  If you're unsure, contact your BBB or search our online database.