Scam Alerts

Toner and Office Supply Scams

Helpful Sites for Fraud Alerts

Better Business Bureau
Don't fall victim to companies claiming to offer "deals" on Hewlett Packard, Konica, Ricoh, or other manufacturer's copier, laser printer, and FAX toner cartridges that ship from their "distribution centers". Our experience has been that typically, the 'scam' companies are located out-of-state, will identify themselves as IKON Office Solutions (or other local company), and sell products at 4-500% greater than our contract pricing. Products are typically not made by the genuine manufacturer, and do not include shipping costs (often, several hundred dollars) in addition to the cost of the item(s).

If you receive a phone call from any of these companies, please express your disinterest, or inform them that you will transfer them to the Purchasing Department at x 3017. In the majority of cases, the individual will hang-up.


Do not sign and return any order forms faxed to your department by a company you're unfamiliar with.

However, if you happen to inadvertently order toner, or are shipped product from one of these companies:


  1. Refuse the shipment; or
  2. If signed for, DO NOT OPEN the package. Contact UPS or the delivery company to issue a 'pick-up' for return of the package to the company.
Contact Purchasing at x 3017 and we'll direct you accordingly.

Recently, we have also gotten several phone calls regarding an office supply company that is going out of business and wants to sell us their inventory at "bargain price". This is a scam, again please refer them to Purchasing.

Why Does This Happen?

  • Crooks want to get it (and some are very good at what they do).
  • Confusion over 'scammers' with real companies.
  • Gifts can be "motivators".
  • They don't usually call the Purchasing Department.
  • Departments desire to "save money".
  • Reluctance to believe/admit being a victim.
  • Confusion between "offer" and "invoice".
  • Cleaver phraseology by scammers.
  • Publicly available information.

Favorite Quotations from Scammers

  • "We understand that you have "x" brand copier (or printer, FAX). If you order now, you can you avoid a price increase."
  • "We had a fire at the family office supply business. We need to raise money fast, and I'm just helping out."
  • "Dad died, and we're closing the company. I'm just helping my Mom out."
  • "My brother-in-law went to the military. I'm just helping my sister out."
  • "The University President referred me to you."
  • "The price increase has just been announced but if you order now, you can avoid it."
  • "Our 25th Anniversary gift to our customers is ready to ship to you. What color do you want?"
  • "What is your home address?"


Purchasing/AP Department

(315) 792-3718
(315) 792-3006
1600 Burrstone Road | Utica, NY 13502