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New avoid telemarketing scams fotonovela

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Three years ago, the FTC created its first fotonovela – a graphic novel to help Spanish-speakers spot and stop frauds targeting Latino communities. To date, we’ve published seven fotonovelas on topics from notario fraud to government imposters. They’ve been very popular – almost a million copies have flown off our shelves – and today we are announcing our newest fotonovela, La familia Rivera evita las estafas de telemercadeo (The Rivera Family Avoids a Telemarketing Scam).


The story goes like this: On her way to her daughter’s school play, Blanca gets an urgent call from someone claiming to be from the IRS. A few days later, Blanca’s father gets a call from his bank asking him to verify personal information. Then there are those annoying robocalls with travel offers. What can the Rivera family do to detect, avoid, and stop these phone scams? To find out, visit to read the story, and to order free copies of it in Spanish. The fotonovela is also available to read and download online in English.


For more tips on detecting and avoiding scams, visit Interested in free scam alerts from the Federal Trade Commission? Subscribe today!

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit



I received an automated call at my office. The recording said that they were the Dept of Treasury and did not refer to an account or who the call was for. Left 925-800-1082 as a call back if I didn't want to be arrested. My husband called the number only to find the man on the other end of the line without answers to his questions.

I received 5 phone messages in 6/14/17 from #201-365-2708 caller ID said their name was "Hasbrouck He NJ" they said the IRS has a lawsuit against me and to call the number I provided. I did not call the nor did I answer the phone when they called. The time of the calls were at 8:58am- 10:20am-11:37am-1:17pm-3:54pm All on 6/14/17. I hope something is being done to catch these thieves so they can be held accountable for their actions.

I"m having the same problem, only it's several times a day, for nearly a month now. They change phone numbers. I am so sick of it. When is it going to stop. I turned into the complaint.

I received a call this morning from 'Federal Trade Commission' saying I have been charged with an offence under section 952 - 202 area code - Washington DC USA I am in Canada!!

Wow - government imposters need a geography lesson! Please report this at The information will go into a secure database that law enforcement agencies (including partners in Canada) use for investigations.  Thank you.

ha ha ha ha. This is absolutely hilarious! This is one of the main reasons I keep up with the FTC Blog on a daily basis; it is soooo entertaining some times.

if you reported it to the FTC, you started the ball rolling

How can I figure out all the telemarketers numbers on my phone?

I'm assuming at this point that you do not have a land line provider that supports the FTC's free NoMoRobo nor have a cell phone plan that you can run a free app on your cell, that blocks the telemarketers, like many of us.

The call is likely a telemarketer if:
1) called from unknown number & not expecting that call
2) call from Florida (most are from there)

If you answered call and they called you and:
1) They ask for personal info (ssn, bank, CC, etc)
2) Pay via Western Union or Green Dot card
3) Claim they are Gov, but they specify a payment type
4) Want payment NOW!
5) Msg "Press 1 to be put on our do not call list"

I hope this helps. The FTC has lots of great, articles and blogs on this, broken down by sub-categories. Try the search bar at the top or browse by topic on the right of this site.

Hi. So glad I found your site! Have had six calls from a Florida number - (904) 327-9631 in the last 2 days on my cell phone. Duda answer it until the 6th time because we have family down there and thought if they were calling my cell instead of my mom's landline, it may be an emergency. Of course, when I picked up, it simply said, "Goodbye." So, call has been blocked after I saw it as a scam on the white pages and they said to report to the FTC. Guess this blog is official reporting?? Am new to this. Thanks!

You can report this to the FTC at The information you give goes into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations.

The comments you put here on the blog don't go into the law enforcement database. Thanks.

I am getting a lot of 'masked' calls, where it appears the caller is local (same exchange as my number) but is not someone I know and they don't leave a message. I've even gotten ones listed as a veterinary hospital (don't have a pet) and medical group (not my doctors). I worry my numbers is also being used as a "mask" for these scammers.

I keep on recieving calls from a wierd nu ber 1888-829-004 its missing one number they say that they are from a goverment program for home owners they basically keep on calling all y numbers ,offive ,home ,cell its really annoying

Thanks for publishing home owners personal experiences! I have had similar experiences
as well.

I received a call from 1-866-385-0986 stating that this was the IRS and this is the final attempt to contact me in regards to fraud. If I did not contact this number, I would receive a warrant for my arrest. I called the number out of curiosity and it rings then hangs up immediately. The IRS wouldn't contact me by phone, it would by mail so I knew something was definitely wrong.


This FTC article has tips on how to block unwanted calls.

some one just called me saying that they are representing blue cross and 30 other insurance companies, she knew my name, address, and age. she wanted to know my doctors name, which I gave a fake name. when I asked for her info she hung up.

I received a call today from a 8435308234... They said I had a problem with my credit card, so I wanted to make sure that someone wasn't trying to get one in my name... The man asked if my # ended in **** and I said yes without thinking!!! Then I asked him to check to make sure there wasn't a card in my name and he hung up on me! I remembered seeing a story about saying yes and they use that recording to get things charged or as approval for things??? I'm worrying that I just totally screwed up! I reported it to FTC but I'm looking for advise on what to do now... And to remind people to THINK before answering anything!!!

Unfortunately, the DNC List is pretty much useless on telemarketers that happen to be scammers. With the technology they have, they know how to get around almost anything including call blockers. Overall, only legitimate telemarketers will acknowledge the DNC List, while others won't. Let's not forget that scammers do have a history of never playing by the rules. One other thing, never press anything on their calls even if it's to be placed on their DNC List in the claim that they will leave you alone. In reality, it will just show to them that your phone number is active, and they won't just bother you more times later on, they will even distribute your phone number to others of their kind to bother you even more.

I keep getting calls telling me I was chosen for US Government Grant for$9,000.00 because I am in good standing with IRS + I pay my bills on time. He/She says they do not need personal info from the site ? I asked what site but he just says it's free money + he didn't need personal information.He then said to call the Senior Accounts Agent @ 1-202-780-9515 and give him the ID# GG1101 so the grant money could be released. Is this a scam? A lady called with same grant of $9,000.00 due to my good standing on my bills in late May, but I hung up on her. Please advise so I know. If I am entitled to it, I sure need it!!! Thank you

This is a scam. The U.S. government isn't giving away money. This is a government imposter scam.

The caller will keep promising you money, but eventually, he's going to ask you to wire money, or buy an iTunes card and tell him the numbers, or give him something first.

I have received phone calls for a least a month. They're "from the IRS and have a federal warrant out for my arrest". Every day or so, they change numbers. They call SEVERAL times a day. I'm so sick of this!!! I've reported it. Does that help???

855-632-8334 Robo calls between 2 and 3 times every day for over two weeks.

I just received a scam phone call from 831-777-5265 on my mobile phone at 9:16am PST on Jul/26/2017. He claimed to be from Google Business Listing department and calling from Google Corporation to fix business listing. They want to charge one time payment to do this. I have asked them question that, is he calling from Google Corporation? and he confirmed yes he is. I have asked this question twice and he gave me same answer. I asked for his phone number and then he disconnected the phone.

Got the IRS call. Told him I had worked in government for 20 years, and people from my office would like to arrange a meeting with his people. Phone went dead.

I received phone calls claiming to be IRS and to contact them immediately.

I Will Contact IRS Thank you

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