North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice
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Don’t let patent trolls bully you

Monday, January 06, 2014


North Carolina consumers and businesses need to beware of patent trolls trying to charge high fees for using everyday office equipment.

Patent trolls are businesses that don’t invent or manufacture anything. Instead, they acquire patents and then try to make consumers, small businesses and non-profits pay questionable fees for using things like printers, scanners and wireless routers.

Patent trolls often succeed at collecting fees because victims want to avoid expensive and complex lawsuits.

Three North Carolina small-business owners recently complained to our Consumer Protection Division about patent trolls, and we’ve opened an investigation. We’ve also asked the Federal Trade Commission to share information it gathers about patent trolls so we can better protect consumers and businesses from them.

If you think you’ve been targeted by a patent troll, contact us at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or file a consumer complaint at ncdoj.gov.