A New Jersey company that fronted a locksmith dispatch business under the name USA Locksmith was accused by state consumer protection authorities with using numerous phony business names and addresses and local telephone numbers to fool customers in southeast Wisconsin into thinking they were dealing with local businesses.
Instead, their local calls to local-sounding names ("Racine Locksmiths") were channeled out-of-state, where a dispatcher contacted a contract locksmith to respond.
According to the complaint, Prestige Business Solutions set up more than 400 telephone numbers in Wisconsin area codes in 2009 for its locksmith contract service, for which it had 48 fraudulent business listings. The state received three consumer complaints about the business in 2009.
The complaint filed by the Department of Justice in Racine County Circuit Court asks for fines and a stop to the deceptive advertising. This the second such lawsuit filed against locksmith-referral companies in Wisconsin in the past year.