Consumer Information Blog

It’s Game Over for Gameover Zeus

The Department of Justice recently announced a multinational law enforcement effort to disrupt the Gameover Zeus Botnet.

What is it and why care about it? Gameover Zeus is malware designed to steal banking and other credentials from home and business computers.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

Weight loss: Fact vs. Fiction

Thinking about squeezing into that itsy bitsy teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini — or baring your bod in that form-fitting suit? It’s beach season, and those quick weight loss products might seem appealing. You’ve probably seen the ads for pills, powders, patches, belts, and creams promising to melt the pounds away without any diet or exercise. But do those products really work?

Learn how to tell fact from fiction when it comes to weight loss products. Play the FTC’s new Weight Loss Challenge game, and have fun getting the skinny on safe and effective weight loss!

Weight loss challenge game

Blog Topics: 
Health & Fitness

Whoa there! Watch out for cell phone ‘credit muling’

Scammers have found yet another way to exploit people who need money fast, including cash-strapped college students: Pay them to open wireless contracts that include new smart phones, tablets and other mobile devices. The scammers target people to act as “credit mules.” That’s when a scammer uses someone else's identity, personal information and credit to get something of value. In this case, it’s a wireless device.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Mortgage ads without credibility: “ZIP. ZERO. NADA.”

If you’re looking for a mortgage, ads for “$0 money down” may be tempting. But if they hide fees or don’t disclose the true terms of the deal, they’re misleading, and they violate the law. In fact, the FTC recently settled charges with a Pennsylvania homebuilder that deceived consumers with ads for low-cost mortgages that hid fees and didn’t disclose vital information about the true cost of the mortgages.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

What’s in a health claim? Should be a healthy dose of proof

Name a common health concern, and there’s probably a dietary supplement that promises a solution. But when advertised promises aren’t backed up with adequate proof, the Federal Trade Commission sees a problem. The makers of the BrainStrong Adult dietary supplement agreed to settle FTC charges of deceptive advertising for making unsupported health claims about BrainStrong with DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid.

Blog Topics: 
Health & Fitness

A Word of Caution about World Cup Ticket Scams

There are only 7 days to go until the opening match of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and World Cup fever is in the air! In just a few days, soccer fans from around the world will descend on Brazil to watch their squad take the pitch to play “el jogo bonito” – the beautiful game.

Maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who already scored tickets. But if you’re still looking to buy tickets to see your team play in Brazil, you might feel like it’s the 90th minute and you're down a goal. If you’re in the market for World Cup tickets, the Federal Trade Commission has some words of caution for you about ticket scams.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Building a Better Credit Report 2.0

If you’re shopping for a car, applying for a job, looking for a home, or simply getting your financial house in order, then it’s time to check your credit report.

The Federal Trade Commission recently updated one of its most popular consumer publications, Building a Better Credit Report.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

How do you spell debt relief? Certainly not DebtPro 123, LLC

If you’re looking for help to improve your financial situation, the last thing you need is a company that will take you out of the frying pan and into the fire. And yet that’s just what an Irvine, California-based debt relief operation did to some consumers.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Scammy, scammier, scammiest

Many issues were highlighted at last week’s Common Ground Conference on Native American Issues, held in Albuquerque. And some of the scams are things we see in other communities, all over the country. However. The scammy practices in Indian Country are among the most egregious we’ve seen in our collective decades of lawyering. Being a consumer in Indian Country is evidently harder (and riskier) than being a consumer elsewhere.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Scammers continuing to pose as IRS agents

Tax season may be over, but scammers posing as IRS officials continue to call, saying people owe taxes and better pay up. They threaten to arrest or deport people, revoke a license, or even shut down a business. How do they do it? By rigging caller ID information to appear as if the IRS is calling, and sometimes even making a follow-up call claiming to be the police or the DMV.

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