County Officials Met with Chinese Delegation to Talk About Fraud Prevention

Officials from the Montgomery County Office of Consumer Protection met with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce delegation on Oct. 7 to learn about the regulations in which businesses operate in the U.S.

Chinese DelegationDuring the meeting, Eric Friedman, director of the Montgomery County Office of Consumer Protection, shared with the Chinese delegation how the office handle complaints, and how they can help consumers in case of fraud.

“We handle complaints. All types; from auto-repair, home improvement, fraud, identity theft, credit card. Almost any type of consumer transaction,”  Friedman said.

Friedman added that the Office of Consumer Protection is a local law enforcement agency and they can issue civil citations or tickets to merchants who violate the law.

Friedman showed the badge officials present to residents when out in the field, but added “We don’t carry guns.”

At some point during the meeting the Chinese delegation watched a video about illegal towing in Montgomery County, and how the Office of Consumer Protection works to protect residents’ rights.

Chinese officials praised Montgomery County for enforcing regulation and protecting consumers, and added they were very interested in learning how Americans prevent fraud.

Friendman asked about Alibaba- a Chinese shopping engine website-  since the company also launched its website in the U.S.

Chinese officials said if Alibaba is available in the U.S. they must comply with American laws.

They acknowledged that U.S. and China are different countries with distinguished policies but hoped that both offices can work together to prevent fraud and help consumers.



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Aline Barros

About Aline Barros

Aline Barros is a multimedia reporter and community engagement specialist with Montgomery Community Media. She can be reached at and on Twitter at @AlineBarros2.


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