Imitation Is the Sincerest Form of Falsity

According to the Consumer Services Protection Commission’s website, it’s a “National consumer protection agency and works For the Consumer to help avoid fraud, deception, and/or unfair business practices in the financial assistance marketplace.” The site went on to talk about the agency’s role in enforcing the law and educating consumers about how to “spot and avoid fraud and deception.” On the right was a blue and gold logo with the scales of justice and the winged wheel of commerce.

Look familiar to you? It sure did to us. But more importantly, according to a complaint filed by the FTC, it’s likely it looked familiar to consumers. The FTC has alleged that the site was the creation of Christopher Mallett, a San Antonio-based lead generator who used it to lure people struggling to pay their bills. He then referred them to companies selling mortgage, tax, and debt relief services with promises that their debts would be reduced or eliminated, the FTC charged.

The complaint also says that Mallett deceived consumers by using the name of another fictitious agency he called the U.S. Mortgage Relief Counsel. His FHA-HomeLoan.info website featured a picture of the U.S. Capitol and promised that the “Counsel” would direct consumers to “officials licensed with the National Mortgage Licensing Service (NMLS), persuant [sic] to the SAFE act of 2008.” According to the complaint, neither Mallett nor any of his sites have ever been affiliated with the FTC or any other government agency.

Mallett allegedly claimed that people who responded to his solicitations could have their debts substantially reduced. One “success stats chart” purported to show that people’s debts were settled for 16%-40% of the amount owed. These claims were false or unsubstantiated, the FTC charged. The complaint also alleges violations of the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule and Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in D.C., is ongoing. In the agency’s announcement of the case, the FTC thanked the Tennessee and AGs’ Offices for their assistance.

Tagged with: credit, debt, imposter, mortgage, scam

Comments

I have been victimized by scam artists on more than one occassion. I have never been able to repair the damage they did to my life and to my family. The only way that it could ever even begin to be straightened out is for the ones who did it to admit what they did and even then that would never repair the damage their deceit has done emotionally and to my reputation.

I was also just recently scammed. My entire account was cleared out. I empathize and sympathize with you. It is sad that is the low income, those struggling to make it that are affected.
Ditto to everything that you wrote gjsrc

Hi! I have been getting hone calls for a security system, which I need but I have not been looking for one. They use 2 different names. The main name is ISI Home Security System and the other name is Something like Quality Home Security Base. I looked it up on internet where I found only one sitend it as in South Africa.

The next problem I have is people attaching some porn site to my phone that pops up when I make 800 phone calls instead of connecting me to the proper number.

I was also recently scammed from craigslist. One cannot be too careful. I understand the feeling. Let us hope these people are caught and brought to justice

Please beware!!! They also use real companies that exist. They go on social media sites getting information, names and any data that can be found and scam in the name of these companies.

Something needs to be done about the people who sell travel clubs but lie about the benefits. You basically get nothing for the money you pay except access to a travel agency. These people prey on the elderly when that are on vacation telling lies. I am 71 and feel like I was duped. This was in Ft Lauderdale.

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