Expo-Guide scam – 2014 update
Connect, publishers of Scottish Dental magazine and organisers of the annual Scottish Dental Show has been forced to reiterate its advice on a long-standing trade show scam.
Expo-Guide are a Mexican company who send out innocent looking application forms to companies exhibiting at trade shows worldwide. The letter asks the recipient to check listings information and to confirm by filling in an attached form.
However, in the small print at the bottom of the form it states that, by filling it in, you are agreeing to place an advert on the Expo-Guide website for the next three years at a cost of €1,271 per year or the nearest equivalent in Mexican pesos.
Bizarrely, the company has recently sent out a letter and form to Connect asking for confirmation of a listing at the Scottish Dental Show, which is of course organised by Connect itself.
Bruce Oxley, editor of Scottish Dental magazine and a member of the organising committee of the Scottish Dental Show, said: “We’ve been aware of this scam since the very first show back in 2012 and, unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be going away.
“A handful of companies have contacted us over the years to let us know that they have received letters like this and our advice has always been to ignore it and report to your local Trading Standards.
“However, if you have received a letter and sent the form back, our advice would still be to report it to Trading Standards and then ignore any further correspondence. We have heard numerous reports from individuals and companies around the world who have fallen prey to the scam and, apart from a flurry of letters and demands for payment, nothing more comes of it.
“This is a scam, pure and simple. They are trying to catch you unawares and then scare you into paying up.
“If you have any questions, or you are unsure about any correspondence you have received relating to the Scottish Dental Show, please get in touch with us directly and we will assure you if it is genuine or not.”
For more information, there is a LinkedIn group that individuals can join to read and share their experiences, click here to view it. Also, the BDIA Dental Showcase has issued this advice, the Dentistry Show this, and an example of how another industry has reacted to this can be viewed here.