Assumed Name

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2004-11-19 Print this article Print

It may well be true that plenty of people cook up aliases—particularly when their name has been associated with a company that fails to deliver products or refunds. "It got to the point where it was tough to do business under the OraKnowledge name," Haskins said. "I wanted to start anew and separate myself. Not to defraud anyone, but not to attach my name to it." The New Jersey Attorney Generals office declined to state whether it is investigating Haskins. Haskins activities are clearly illegal, though, according to Andrew August, a business attorney and principal partner of San Francisco-based Pinnacle Law Group LLP.
"What hes doing is clearly illegal under a potpourri of federal and state statutory schemes," August said. That includes laws such as the CAN-SPAM Act, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and the California Uniform Trade Secrets Act. But the likelihood of Haskins being brought to justice is small, August said, given the comparatively negligible amounts he owes his customers. "The amounts are so small," he said. "What capable consumer rights lawyer is going to take him on?"
By the time this story was posted, Haskins hadnt responded to questions regarding whether OraSecure was an ongoing business venture. Haskins did, however, stress his opinion that, although he owes people money, he is not a crook. "Am I a fraudster or scam artist? I wouldnt say so at all. Id consider myself a small entrepreneur who got buried in the economy and almost had no way out," he said. "Im not some snake-oil salesman. Im not sitting in an apartment sucking up peoples credit cards and not delivering anything to them. There are people on the Internet who have accused me of that, but thats far from the case." Editors Note: This story was updated to include comments from Pinnacle Law Groups Andrew August. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest database news, reviews and analysis.

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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