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WV Secretary of State joins national initiative to educate public on business services

Charleston, W.Va – Today, the WV Secretary of State's Office joined the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) in launching an informa¬tive public education campaign called #BizSchemeSOS.

This new initiative highlights Secretaries of State as au¬thoritative sources for business services and information including registration and licensing. The campaign also emphasizes the Secretary of State's role in alerting the business community and public at large of wide-spread schemes against businesses.

Most NASS members are responsible for business services in their state—with many overseeing busi¬ness entity filings, managing Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) filings and issuing and maintaining notary commissions.

“Secretaries of State are committed to spreading awareness and information in order to prevent bad actors from taking advantage of small businesses, vulnerable populations and the general public through the use of misleading business schemes or fraudulent messages and practices,”“I’m glad NASS and our members are tackling this important issue head on by promoting #BizSchemeSOS.”

An example of deceptive practices #BizSchemeSOS can be found in companies sending misleading solicitation mailings. These mailings often appear to be official government documents, instructing businesses to submit payment to them for assistance in meeting state filing requirements. In many of these cases, the compliance services offered by the companies behind the solicitations are either unnecessary or can be done by the business directly through the state agency for a much smaller fee.

"This public education campaign is an effort to protect West Virginia businesses and non-profits from deceptive practices that target our business community," said WV Secretary of State Mac Warner.

According to Secretary Warner, there are more than 117,000 business entities and non-profits legally registered to operate in West Virginia. A complete list of business services offered by the WV Secretary of State's Office can be found at www.wvsos.gov.

#BizSchemeSOS promotion will occur on the NASS and WV Secretary of State social media pages. You can also find us on Twitter @wvsosoffice.

Follow NASS on Twitter to see regular updates.