AG Says Ratings Not Trustworthy After BBB Gives A- To "Hamas"

How was a group of business owners able to secure an A- BBB rating for a fictional company called “Hamas?” (Yes, named after THAT Hamas.)

According to an ABC News investigation, “a group of Los Angeles business owners paid $425 to the Better Business Bureau and were able to obtain an A minus grade for a non-existent company called Hamas, named after the Middle Eastern terror group.”

“Right now, this rating system is really unworthy of consumer trust or confidence,” said Connecticut attorney general Richard Blumenthal in an interview that will be shown tonight on 20/20.

The BBB says the idea that they accept pay for grades was inaccurate and that a “mistake was made by salespeople.”

“The BBB accreditation and the BBB ratings systems is not about generating money,” said BBB national president and CEO Steve Cox. He said the A minus grade for Hamas was given in error. “Plain and simple, we made a mistake,” Cox told ABC News.

Meanwhile, Blumenthal has send an official demand letter asking the BBB to discontinue the ratings system because it is “potentially harmful and misleading.”

The report also says that an A rating was given to a non-existent sushi restaurant and a skinhead, neo-Nazi web site called Stormfront.

“That’s an inaccurate statement that business people are able to buy A’s,” Cox said. “We have more than 500,000 non-accredited businesses who have A ratings,” he added.

Full report available here.