Victory State Bank Shares Advice on Starting an Internet Business
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – Starting an Internet business can sound like a dream: Work from home, set your own hours, be your own boss. But most Internet startups require significant investments of time and money, and many of them fail.
Victory State Bank would like to point out that often, bogus Internet-opportunity sales pitches are short on details and long on high-pressure tactics to persuade you to buy before you’ve investigated the offer.
You may encounter pitches like “Start your own Internet business;” “No experience required;” “Experts available to coach you” in a variety of places: on the Web and in e-mail offers, infomercials, classified ads, flyers, texts, telephone pitches, seminars, and direct-mail offers.
The Federal Trade Commission recommends doing the following before you buy any business opportunity:
- Consider the promotion carefully. If it claims buyers can earn a certain income, the promoter also must give the number and percentage of previous purchasers who earned that much. If the promotion makes an earnings claim - but the additional information isn't there - the business opportunity seller may well be violating the law.
- Study any disclosure documents. Under the Business Opportunity Rule, which is enforced by the FTC, many business opportunity promoters are required to provide a document to potential purchasers that includes information about cancellation and refund policies, whether the seller has faced any lawsuits from purchasers or other legal actions alleging fraud, and contact information for references who have bought the opportunity.
- Interview previous buyers in person. This helps reduce the chance of being misled by phony references.
- Do a few Internet searches by entering the company name, or the name of the company’s CEO or president, and words like “complaints” or “scam.” Contact the state attorney general's office, local consumer protection agency, and Better Business Bureau, both where the business opportunity promoter is based and where you live, to see if complaints are on file. While a complaint record may indicate questionable business practices, a lack of complaints doesn't necessarily mean the company – or the opportunity – is legitimate. Unscrupulous dealers often change names and locations to hide a history of complaints.
- Consult an attorney, accountant, or other business advisor before you put any money down or sign any papers. Entering into a business opportunity can be costly, so it's best to have an expert check out the contract first.
About Victory State Bank:
VSB Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online http://www.victorystatebank.com. .
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