The FTC will never ask you to send money

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If someone claiming to be with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) contacts you and asks you to send money, it’s a scam. Do not pay. Report it. Spread the word to your family and friends.

We’ve received reports that imposters are calling, emailing, even texting or faxing, and pretending to be with the FTC, in an attempt to gain your trust and to steal your hard-earned money. They’re contacting people about fake prize winnings, grants, or refunds, or saying you’re in trouble and need to pay delinquent accounts or fees. Their goal is to either excite or scare you into sending money. The truth is, the FTC does not call, email, text, or fax consumers to ask for payment. Those are scams. In fact, the Department of Justice just announced that two scammers who impersonated the FTC (and the SEC) were found guilty of scamming people out of $10 million.

The FTC does distribute money to people after suing entities for unlawful practices. In fact, according to our 2017 Annual Report, 6.28 million people received checks from the FTC between July 2016 and June 2017.

However, the FTC will NEVER ask you to send money or provide bank account information to get your money back. If you are entitled to a refund from a FTC lawsuit, you will usually receive a check or claim form with details about the case. The case will be listed in our chart of recent cases resulting in refunds. You can call the number associated with the case on our website if you have any questions.

Imposters won’t stop at just using the FTC’s name. They’ll use the names of any people or organizations you trust. Dealing with imposters in real time can be difficult. But it’s important to take note of not just the story that they tell, but also how they ask you to pay. If they ask you to pay by wiring them money, getting iTunes cards, or putting money on a MoneyPak, Vanilla Reload, or Reloadit card, it’s a scam.

If someone impersonating the FTC has contacted you, do not pay, report it, and spread the word. It may help someone close to you avoid a scam.

Tagged with: imposter, scam
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Money & Credit


Contacted FCC & FTC about annoying phone calls from "Cellphone, IN" 765-707-7860 "Michael" asking for $5,000. I've either hung up immediately or not answered his 2-3 calls daily since Dec. Now, he's calling from the following numbers also: 765-786-7412 "Unavailable", or 606-475-9354 "Karen L. Sherman" or 402-498-4656 "Travelers Co." PLEASE HELP! I'm frightened

You have options for blocking calls you don't want to answer. Read about using technology to block unwanted calls.

You can report the calls at

Wire transfer to my mastercard. My money order..

Although I have never experienced this scam I do get many via phone from fake debt collectors threatening me with arrest or law suits. Since I have educated myself on all things scam I have never been a victim, also I have no outstanding debt. Educate yourself, don't answer ANY calls from numbers you don't know and never send money or donate based on a phone call. We all have the power to fight back so be smart and don't be another victim.

I've has several people calling saying the are from the Federal reserve about government grants. Then saying I would have 250 dollars and go to Western Union to receive said money.

That sounds like a government grant scam. The Federal Reserve does not give grants to individual people.

If someone says you will get a grant, but they want you to pay money first, it is definitely a scam. Read more about government grant scams.

I've been receiving magazines REGULARLY! I don't know who's sending them. I DIDN'T subscribe to them..I KNOW THIS IS A SCAM! No bill has been sent YET...

It's my understanding that you can keep unsolicited gifts and not have to pay for them. If you get a bill, don't pay it.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, when you receive merchandise that you didn’t order, you don’t have to pay for it. Federal laws prohibit mailing unordered merchandise to consumers and then demanding payment. Read more about your rights and unordered merchandise.

Magazine companies will sometimes send out free subscriptions in the hope you will like it and renew it when it is time. My wife gets a free Woman's Day and I get the ESPN magazine.


I keep getting magazines too. They sent me a bill and I sent it back written across saying I DID NOT ORDER STOP SENDING . No more bills or magazines

janettyelleno8o @ received an email from the Federal Reserve Bank of NY. that I would receive 5.5 million dollars. If I pay Gay m. Campell via Walmart . in pittsburg pennsilvainia . 400.00 usd

The FBI is after me all the time!! I know its a scam so I just DELETE

If you go on the FBI website, they will probably tell of this scam and others.

Not long ago AT@T sent me a bill for early termination fee after being with them for 20 or 30 years and they also would not give me back the 38.00 they owed me finally I asked The Federal Trade to look into it they returned all my money the FTC is very good they helped me when AT@T was trying to stick it to me I now know they are honest like myself No more AT@T for me as far as I am cocerned they are nothing but crooks

I had the same problem with AT&T. Phony final bill, threats, intimidation, and phone reps who said the problem was solved - but wasn't. Finally got the BBB involved. I'm soooo grateful to be rid of AT&T!!

Glad to know you can call the FTC on them too.

ok thank you

For many years, off and on, I've rec'd calls from Visa/MasterCard telling me they can reduce my interest rate. Sometimes it is a recorded message and sometimes it is a live person. I've tried everything to get them to stop. These last few months I receive a minimum of one call a day, mostly two calls and one day I rec'd four! I've put all my numbers on the Do Not Call list in 2014 and these calls are still invading my home. I will soon have call display but somehow I don't think that will help. What can be done?

Regarding the unsolicited magazine subscriptions. Magazine companies will sometimes send out free subscriptions. They hope you will like the magazine and renew it when it is time. No obligation to renew.I get a free ESPN mag. and the wife gets a free Woman's Day

I have been hearing radio commercials telling people to go to www. freedomchecks. com, because the government is giving away money. Is this a scam, or something quasi-legal?

No, the government is not giving away money. Some scams say you qualify for a “free grant” to pay for education, home repairs or unpaid bills. Others pretend to be a “government” agency or some other organization with an official sounding name.

Don't give your bank account information to someone you don't know. Don't give them personal information, and don't pay to get a "free grant." Read more about grant scams.


Got a call from +1(949) 698-9225 threatening me with arrest "by the local cops" because "there are four serious allegations pressed on your name at this moment." Call them before they take legal action against me. I want to file a complaint against these people!

Phone call made from 843-401-5226 stated they have a warrant for my arrest stating in years 2011-2016 I reported taxes intentionally incorrect and now owe $3858 to the IRS. They stated all information under my social including checks, accounts, and payments will be frozen immediately. I have reported my taxes correctly up to date through a tax firm. Should I be concerned? They also gave me a case number: AEJ7058. This cannot be correcy, in 2011 i was only 15 years old.

I have been contacted by someone named Jerry Williams he says he is an FBI agent and he has my money from a previous scam. But he insists i have to pay to get it back his phone number is 2028440756

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