Beware the List Scams

Scam alert message

How SIA works to combat the unscrupulous selling of association and event mailing lists

In recent years, we have seen an increase in the prevalence of scams and the fraudulent business practice of selling falsified or stolen mailing lists. In this type of scam, an individual may receive an email request to purchase the mailing list of an association’s members and/or the attendees or exhibitors of a major event or trade show.

Example of a list scam email

These unscrupulous practices are sadly very common and impact many industry associations and groups that host events. In these cases, the scammers do not represent the associations or events whose lists they claim to be selling.

Please be aware that the Security Industry Association (SIA) is not part of these types of requests; we take the data privacy of our members and event attendees very seriously and would never sell our lists.

SIA is working to combat the practice of selling falsified or stolen mailing lists and is part of a coalition of organizations calling for investigation into these proliferating scams. In an Oct. 1, 2020, letter to Federal Trade Commission Chair Joseph J. Simons and U.S. Attorney General William Barr, the coalition discussed the deceitful activity and the serious financial and reputational implications of these scams to associations and trade organizations.

“Trade and professional associations and trade show organizers depend on the willingness of people to attend these events, and that willingness is built on trust,” the letter said. “The deceptive practices of these businesses are undermining the relationship between members, attendees and official industry sponsors.

In the letter, SIA and the other organizations – including the Consumer Technology Association and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce –  requested that the federal government review and investigate these matters without delay.

SIA is proud to serve our members, and we are committed to handling sensitive data in a safe and secure manner to protect the personally identifiable information of security industry employees, partners and customers.