Consumer Information Blog

A Little Birdie Told Me

Are you a servicemember who’s curious about credit? Or are you dealing with debt? Maybe you’re a military spouse who wants some tips on managing money. Then join us for a Twitter chat about consumer protection issues on June 19 at 2 p.m, Eastern. FTC staff – and our partners at DoD, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Office of Servicemember Affairs, and Military Saves – will answer questions for 60 minutes on credit, debt, and savings. To participate, follow @FTC and Tweet questions with the hashtag #mcpd.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Summer Camp Season

Aah, summer break. School’s almost out, and camp season is just around the corner. Whether your kids are attending a program for sports, arts, or education, there’s plenty of fun to be had this summer…and plenty of forms to be filled out.

Summer program forms may require you to provide your child’s personal information — like their Social Security number. While this may seem routine, it’s important to do what you can to protect sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

Observing World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

Elder abuse is recognized by experts as a public health crisis that crosses socio-economic borders. Although millions of older Americans are abused, neglected, and exploited every year, an estimated 84 percent of cases go unreported.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Give Dad the Gift of Cyberspeak

Does your dad think spyware is James Bond’s tux? When you tell him to be careful about phishing, does he ask you about mercury levels in the lake? When you remind him to clear the cookies on his PC, does he remind you he doesn’t eat in the office?

If you answered yes to any of these, it may be time to give Dad a lesson in cyberspeak.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

Five Steps to a Great Mortgage Deal

Shopping around for a home loan will help you get the best financing deal. A mortgage is a product, so why not apply the same tactics you use before you make any other major purchase? The cost of a mortgage depends on your credit history, and involves rates, points, fees, private mortgage insurance, and other factors, so it’s best to compare, compare, compare.

Military Consumer Protection Day 2013

Calling all military families and veterans! Are you looking to protect yourself or your family from fraud, identity theft, and scams? Maybe you’re curious about the best way to use credit, shop for a used car, or maximize your security online. 

Military folks are consumers, too – and critical to the economy. Just ask the 1.4 million men and women on active duty or the 1.1 million in the National Guard and Reserve forces. But the unique challenges of military life – frequent relocation, separation from family and friends, and the stresses of deployment – can make military households an attractive target for scam artists. In fact, during 2012 the Federal Trade Commission logged more than 62,000 complaints from servicemembers, veterans, and spouses about their experiences in the marketplace.

That led the FTC and its partners to sponsor Military Consumer Protection Day on July 17, 2013. It’s a great day to empower military and veteran communities with information as the first line of defense against consumer fraud.

Vacation Nation

Today the FTC and federal, state, and international law enforcement partners announced 191 recent actions against companies scamming travelers and timeshare property owners. Many of the cases — including the FTC’s — involved timeshare resale scams.

Here’s how the scam plays out:

Timeshare Resale Scams Infographic

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

Going on Vacation?

Planning a vacation can be overwhelming. And while there may be options for virtually every budget, there also are lots of pitches made that, frankly, may be a little generous for the situation. Here are some tips to get you started.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Proposed Changes Would Protect Consumers from Deceptive Telemarketing

Consumers may get some added protection from fraudulent telemarketers under some proposed changes to the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule. Right now, the Rule spells out when telemarketers can call and what they must say. The FTC has proposed changing the Rule to end the use of certain payment methods that fraudulent telemarketers prefer and as a result, increase protection for consumers.

A Guide to Protecting Foster Kids’ Credit

Every year, more than 26,000 kids in the United States age out of foster care. Remember how difficult it was to navigate through the world when you were 18? Now imagine you had to do it with nearly no support system – and with a mountain of debt in your name, thanks to identity theft. But there's a new guide that can help kids - and the people who help them.

Cover of the guide, "Youth and Credit: Protecting the Credit of Youth in Foster Care."

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

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