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Scams near you, by the numbers

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Every day, people across the country are telling the FTC what happened to them. Maybe they lost money to a scam, lost their identity, or just spotted something that looked fishy and wanted somebody to know. All of that information helps FTC and other law enforcement agencies investigate and bring cases against scammers. And, every year, we roll up all that data and give it back to you in an annual data book. Now, though, you don’t have to wait a year to find out what’s happening.

Starting today, the FTC is making that Consumer Sentinel data available to you every quarter. If you visit ftc.gov/data, you’ll find an interactive online tool that lets you find things like:

  • What scams are people reporting in your state, and how much money are people losing?
  • What are the top states reporting, say, prizes and sweepstakes fraud? Or other frauds?
  • What’s changed over time, from 2014 to now?
  • What are military consumers reporting?
  • How much money have older or younger people reported losing to fraud?
  • How are identity thieves misusing people’s information?

This new quarterly resource might especially interest you if you’re an academic, into research, in the media, or just really interested in consumer protection – or what’s happening with scams near you. Knowing about scams helps you avoid them, so play with the data, download it you want to do more analysis, and print it if you want to share it.

We’ll also be releasing periodic Data Spotlights on trends or hot topics we’ve spotted in the data – like the one released earlier today. If you spot something in the data that you find interesting, please leave it in the comments.

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Diamond Resorts International Complaint
We often visit Circus Circus in Las Vegas, every time we walk through the door we are approached by a Diamond Resorts sales people offering us free vacations and free gifts. We were able to resist until one day when the salesman made us an offer that we could not refuse of 3 free mini vacations and a $125 gift card for just attending a 90 minute presentation. This is when our “Nightmare of a Lifetime” started!
At the presentation we were greeted by an overly friendly salesman who wanted to know all about us and he shared his personal life story with us. Even though we were on our guard against overly friendly sales people, we felt somewhat confident that he would be somewhat honest in his dealing with us. However, we were so very wrong. The salesman spoke very fast and had a heavy accent, we mentioned at the very beginning that my husband has a “100% Vietnam Army Artillery hearing disability” and that he would have to slow down so that we could both understand him. That was to no avail as he proceeded talking even faster, we were now becoming very uncomfortable. Unbelievably after 2 hours when we thought the presentation was over, he brought in two more of high pressure people that he wanted us to meet. Again, we were presented with more “so good to be true deals” that we decided to listen, which was a big mistake, as we ended up being scammed into purchasing what we thought would be “the deal of a lifetime” as they offered us points at half off. Unfortunately they failed to tell us how much a point was worth in dollars.
Being that we were finally planning on going to Greece, after many years of working and saving our hard earned money, we thought it would be a good idea to purchase what appeared to be great savings plus a lot of freebies they promised if we purchased that day only.
After being at their 90 minute presentation that lasted 5 ½ hours listening to intense, high powered, coercive talk we were completely mentally exhausted, intimidated, pressured and brain washed into making this purchase in order to just get out of that place. We asked if we could come back the next day with a more clear mind and they said that then we would lose all the extras that we just negotiated.
On 1/1/17 we purchased 4,000 points on Contract #1 @4.23/pt, 16,920.00 plus closing costs 592.00 and maintenance fees 1,132.65 for a total of $18,644.65. They told us about a special offer from Barclay Credit Card where we could charge the deposit 7,794.00 and get additional points to pay for the Maintenance Fees - not true. And the salesman said that we could put the down payment on the Diamond Barclay Credit Card for 6 months with 0% interest. At the time we thought it would be a good idea to make payments for such a large amount of money.
On 2/9/17 we were invited to attend a New Member Orientation at Polo Towers, Las Vegas, NV. which was nothing more than increased freebies and enticements to try to get us to make yet another purchase. This time they gave us a much better deal than the first time and were made to understand that we didn’t have enough points to do a trip to Greece, so again under heavy pressure we decided to purchase their offer of 4,500 more points @4.23/pt for 19,125.00 that coincidently, just came over their machine form a just closed account of 4500 points! Looking back now, both my wife and I would have given this sales performance an Academy Award. Lord only knows how many times they’ve used that act. The total cost was $20,506.00 including closing costs of 669.00 and a maintenance fee of 712.00. What a deal, but then again they used their deceptive sales practices and took advantage of our age comprehension skills by opening up a brand new Diamond Barclay Credit Card #2521 without us even realizing it! We thought the deposit was being added to the original Barclay Credit Card #3027. So now we’re up to 8,500 points for a total of $39,150.65.00 and we’re ready to travel. Wrong! Every place we wanted to book in Greece was always unavailable, even trying to book 1 1/4 years in advance! The on-line answer to each and every month we searched (all of them), the reply was “not available” And after checking the 15th month we got a reply of “try again later! Later!?! If we were younger maybe. Over the phone, we even had a Diamond Travel Agent try to make the reservation for us and they too could not and for us to keep on trying. After that, we tried booking our Hotel in Greece on our own. We booked it just a few days later with no problems and paid for the whole trip out of pocket! Understand that this was the same hotel that Diamond listed as unavailable. Total Scam!!! So here we are, paying out $39,150.65 and not getting a hotel in Greece as promised.
In addition, they also misled us on the maintenance fees which were outrageous. With the 1st contract they were $1132.65 and the 2nd was $712.00, that’s $1844.65 for the starting yearly maintenance fees!
We’re in our 70’s and wanted to spend the rest of our precious few remaining years traveling and we thought Diamond Resorts Ownership was the answer because of the way they made their presentation to us, come to find out that they have used nothing but fraudulent schemes to take advantage of elderly and people with disabilities such as us. Most of what they told us was untrue and all the extras they offered were not available when trying to book. To date, we have paid Diamond and Diamond/Barclay Cards $18,131.06 and have received virtually nothing in return. We have used NONE of the 8500 points and demand our monies be refunded!!!
We feel that this has placed a heavy burden on us, both financially and mentally, as we are both retired and live on Social Security and now we find that because of this fraudulent scam we were part of, that we’re not even going to be able to afford to fulfill our dreams at this late stage of our lives.
Thank You for listening.

You could report your experience to your state Attorney General and to the FTC at www.FTC.gov/Complaint. If you report to www.FTC.gov/Complaint, the information 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.

Hooray FTC! Thank you. Here is a federal agency that is always pro-active & works tirelessly to stop these hateful people. Too bad there aren't more agencies of this caliber. FTC always has our backs.

Today I answered a call from the number of the local sheriff's department. A woman identified herself as a sheriff and told me there was a warrant for my arrest. That a lawsuit had been filed against me and gave me a phone number for the law office and a case number. Said to get a confirmation number and show it to the sheriff's station tomorrow by 2:00 or I would be arrested. She didn't know or recognise the street address of the station and changed the time to 10:00.

I think the FTC, FBI (and all of the other "big initial" companies) know exactly what is going on and they refuse to do anything about it. They say"that is the way things are these days.." I don't believe they are trying to do anything to stop it. I feel sorry for the elderly people in this country they cannot seem to have any peace. This "technological" age is a bunch of crap. I miss the days of the regular telephone service.

Just a bit of info for donating to any politician, if you cannot go in person to your political party's local office to donate & get a real receipt from that political party's office with a signed receipt, do not donate on the internet thru an email as you may be scammed! I am an old fashioned lady that I am not that dang lazy that I cannot go to my political party's local office & make a donation! I look out for all scammers! And all Americans should do the same or you may be scammed! Not.me! All this new technology is making loads of problems! And I never ever click on any ads on.the internet as I know the professional company's of America & only deal with them and don't need to click on any ad! And never ever will!

I just wish I could disable my voice mail. So when the scammers call NO ONE would answer. Then they would NOT have my number. But there is no way to stop the voicemail. I used to report to the Do Not Call list- what a waste of time.

I got a call from 8162939699 saying there was a complaint filed against me and want to send papers but don't know where I live and used computer to give a phone number and file number to get back with is it a scam or what

I got a call from an 800 number saying that my social security number had been suspended due to suspicious activity, and to press 1 if I want to know more bout this case? What the hell is this?
The number used to call me was +18664043440

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