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Hey, guys – we’re back. We missed you. What’s been going on? No, really, we want to hear from you. Now that funding has been restored, our systems are live again, and you can report fraud to the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel. We’re anxious to know what scams you’ve been seeing so far in 2019.

As we’ve been checking out the news, it looks like family emergency scams are still a thing – where someone pretending to be a grandkid or family member calls with an emergency and asks you to wire money or buy gift cards for them. We saw some phishing scams – including emails that appear to be from your bank or credit card company but are really from scammers who want your personal information. Ditto tech support scams – where you get a pop-up, email or phone call saying your computer is broken – but it’s really a scammer after your money or access to all the information on your computer. We think sham Social Security is still calling, and we know that scammers are still demanding gift cards as payment for all sorts of things. (Pro tip: that’s always, always a scam.)

We also got a lot of (*@&% robocalls. We know you did, too. But I finally got a blocker on my cell phone, and it really did make a difference.

So, what scams have you run into? Job scams? Tax scams? (It’s that season.…) Health insurance scams? Of course, we welcome comments below, but our investigators can’t follow up on those comments or use them to build cases. So, if you have some fraud to report, please go to and tell us about the latest scam you’ve experienced.


Tagged with: imposter, robocall
Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


I'm not a guy and get upset with people generalizing!!!!

Your e could not have been started with "we're back..what did we miss????

Really now...listen up and drop that opening terminology!!!!

Been wondering why I have not seen your notices. Good to have you back!

I recently had my mortgage company decide I could not make an on line payments unless I paid a nuisance fee. It was only $7.50 but I am super annoyed that I make it easier for them and they charge me for it. I figured a work around but wonder if I should put in a formal complaint.

Welcome back, at least for three weeks!

I have had my Facebook account hacked. It’s the messenger part of the account. The person uses my photo, and speakers to everyone on my messenger list, as though they are me. They tell them that they found out about grant money for retirees, or seniors... and redirect them to an email address, or to call a toll free number for more info. That person asks for all their personal information, in the disguise of doing it on my direction.
I’ve tried , in vain , to get help from Facebook. After about 20 reports, The only thing they do is send me a form email , thanking me for informing them. Nothing is done to help. I put the account on hold /locked for the last year. I don’t think it will ever stop.

Receiving recorded telephone calls from President Trump asking for all citizens to send $35 towards the Wall.

We keep getting calls from 876 area code which is Jamaica for a year & a half! We finally had to buy a phone w/ "call block" on it because they were calling 10-12 times a day from different #'s!! They still call-even thou they are Blocked!! Stupid!!

Welcome back! ..... and hopefully you'll stay put. There is much injustice for you to fight against!

Welcome back! I appreciate what you do for us.

Welcome back! Your services are so needed!

Seeing the same stuff as before. Robocalls: Lately I've been seeing MY name and phone number on Caller ID when MY phone rings. Not enough enforcement on this many times a day problem. And having to buy a blocker for my land line switches the burden from you to ME! That's not acceptable
Emails, which I dutifully forward and phone calls claiming that we owe on Taxes, or were overpaid on our social security check just keep flowing in. Offers from companies I bought from but never set up an account with, including such notables as Bed,Bath and Beyond and The Hartford Courant, which claimed the right to send me mail because I opted in, or signed up for, the mailing. And when I tried to find out where, found that I had no account and couldn't opt out without opening one, or had an account and had already opted out of all the mailings when I opened it. And sometimes they just ignore me. I have no answers except to say that you're having trouble doing what you're in place to do. And you should look at that.

Glad your back! Frightening reading all of these scams. Lately, I am receiving calls informing me that I owe money on car payments, and if I don't pay, the bank will repossess my car. Since I don't own a car, I paid no attention. I get these calls at least 4 times a week. I block the number, but still get them.

Glad to know you are back. Received another tech call while you were gone, saying my conputer would be going down. Also got a credit report from Experian, which shows the false charge is still on my reort. I have already filed with FTC; do I need to contact local police?

The numbers I have blocked ring once when the idiot calls again. I am so glad it works. Then, peace, for a while.

I wish someone could stop the robocalls that call the first 6 digits of your number and last four from another real cell number. All I can do is block them right away one by one.

I have been getting tons of voicemails to sign up for health insurance from numbers all around the US. Some VM’s to work for amazon or google from home. I have also received a couple in Chinese. I had a coworker listen to one and it is a scam that hopes you are from China and threatens that you are in trouble with the embassy.

Got an official-looking email with USPS logo that was marked "Delivery Problems Notification", with a "More Information" button. Think about that; the USPS, which is losing much of it's customer base to email, using email to tell me I have a delivery problem?(!)

I got one of those also. Check out the is .com the website ending for the USPS is .gov. I printed a copy & gave it to our postmaster. I know our cell companies sells our numbers to these scanning people (greed). All this scanning going on is getting darn tiresome. When I get a scam call, I pick up the phone & say, "You are being recorded", they hang up.

This guy dm on Instagram then wanted to go to google hangouts and talk instead. He said he was from CA and in the Army and just deployed to Afghanistan this month.An hour later he loved me and wanted to marry me. Then a few days later he lost his Mastercard. I told him I couldn't help him. Now he is saying he needs a $100 Itunes card to activate his phone so he can still talk to me. He has been using his friends wifi he said. Luckily I knew this was a scam from the start. Many red flags, he deleted his Instagram, spelled where he was stationed in CA wrong. Not to mention the government is not going to leave in a bind if you lost your card. You get paid biweekly and get extra allowances for being deployed. Dont send any money or get gift cards for these people. Total scam!!!

Thanks for the updates. Awareness is more than half the battle against consumer fraud.

Our bank had a security officer's email account fall victim to 'phishing' with a crude replica of their email. Daily calls from India continue, they are not Microsoft.

Perfect inflection recorded voices use first name and conversational pauses to force the word "Yes" from victim on phone scams continues.

Report read recently stated one half of all telephonic communication is a scam based operation.

Glad our "eyes and ears" are back on the watch against criminals!

NOTE! Captcha does not appear on Internet Explorer browser

Got notice on computer, Message states, security threat, don't close this webpage or your computer will be damaged. Call Microsoft 1-88- # etc. Was on M/S Edge. End tasked and came back on reboot . Closed all tabs and message dis appeared. Please inform customers of this.

This morning I received three calls from 410-988-4736 in Elliott City, MD telling me they are from Social Security to inform me of some legal enforcement actions filed on my Social Security number and they have to suspend my social security very right moment because of many suspicious activities on my social. They want me to call them back so my social is not suspended.

Anyone else been receiving these calls?


Our phones are ringing a lot with Social Security frauds. They claim our numbers are "rescinded" (fancy word for those cheats!!!), and we must call immediately to discover the fraudulent activity and regain access.

Welcome back! Robocalls have decreased from 6-7/day to 1-2/day. I don’t answer them so I’m not sure what they were trying to get from me. My new phone identifies them as scam. Email scams have markedly increased - 10 - 12 on some days. Most claim my account with a company like Netflix or a bank need updated personal info to be sent to a link. Many target senior citizens about Medicare or Social Security. I am a senior.

Anyone have this problem with Publishers Clearing House. I believe this to be defrauding and unfair practices. I play publicly online I enter their contests and use tokens to bid on prizes they claim to reward winners of those opportunities. I receive emails constantly daily to enter for more opportunities and chances to win win win. I ordered something back in October 2016, I received confirmation they received the order by email. They wrote that I would receive another email when the order was to be processed. That email was never received and the item I ordered exists only on an email because they claim via phone they have no record. I ordered another item in December 2018 and again the same problem. I called again and this time I was told that my home address is blocked because my daughter had an account from my address. It was now closed and never in arrears they said; however, they need her to complete a customer survey before they will allow any order for me at my address to be processed. Hello this is my home address for 42 years plus and
if my account is mine and not my daughters which is closed and was never in arrears then why or how does that affect an account in my name, through my email, and under a different name affect the retail order I placed and their ability to send the product I ordered? They say its my address! Then all of the emails they send to me and my opportunities to purchase and to possibly win anything on their site is blocked due to my street address and that they have no intention of ever sending or allowing my street address to be a recipient of any order or contest I entered, any email or sale I wanted which questions the legitimacy of everything they do. I have written proof, phone call records and notes to document their attempts to rope you in for I feel a make believe online retailer-contest opportunity driven site that does not afford the same opportunity for all and discriminates on basis of address and more. Please investigate. I feel this to be discrimination and unfair business practices and fradulent!

You can tell the FTC about a problem you have with a business. Call 1-877-382-4357 to talk to a person who will take your report.

Receiving fradulent Social Security 1099 end of the year tax forms, bank statements, and credit card statements with higher monthly payments and charges. Is there any end to this fradulent madness ? !

We got 6 calls this morning from our own landline phone number -- that is, it was the people from "Microsoft tech support" spoofing our number. They've been calling a lot recently, but not this early! The calls started at 5:15 am. Tonight we'll turn the ringer off, but we wish we could leave it on in case of emergency calls (REAL emergencies, not these calls that say "Your IP address has expired!").

I have been getting the SS # scam, Tech Support Scam, IRS scam, and Medical Back/Knee Brace scam. The calls are daily and I get about 5 per day.

Hello. When will reissue checks be sent to amg vs FTC consumers. Rusk received my voided check on 12/7/2018. Getting the run around about new checks. They claim they don’t have any info as to when new checks are going out.

Just got a phone call from an Asian sounding man in a very crowded and noisy room telling me he was from Medicare and was asking about my father (who is deceased). I hung up. The phone number was 516-428-9503. Scam!

Has the Federal Do Not Call List become a scam in and of itself? Rumors abound that the legislation expired? I'm getting so many robo-calls and solicitations on my personal cell phone, most falsely appearing as from local numbers, that I've pretty much quit answering calls from folks not in my contact list. (If you're real, leave a message and I'll call you back.) I'm aware of 30-40 others who've grown equally frustrated. And yes, I'm reporting the calls I'm getting and urging others to report theirs. What changed?

We appreciate your fraud alerts. I have been getting robo calls from various entities. Some are numbers that look local to me but I dont know them. They call and leave a voicemail to hurry and sign up for Medicare, but I am not disabled or off work.

Another set of calls I have gotten leave messages that I am wanted for some horrendious crime and they want to help protect me from the FBI, etc. Its ludicrous.

I block them all now bc I dont know the numbers. I feel like I'm being stalked. Its a mess.

I received a curious phone call at 3:48 PM this afternoon (02/01) from a male caller with a foreign accent. He claimed that he was calling from my electric company, PPL. He then went on to congratulate me for making my last three payments to the company on time, and as a thank you PPL was lowering my rate. I interrupted the guy, and explained that I had just logged into my PPL account yesterday and there was no announcement regarding his claim. He promptly ended the conversation by hanging up on his end. When I tried to trace the caller's phone number that showed up on my phone, 570-415-8153, a recording informed me that this was not a working phone number. Please warn others, especially the elderly, of what appears to be a new scam. I did follow up and call PPL to inform the company of this latest scam. A very nice man answered my call and said he would pass it on. He thought that it might be a unsavory competitor attempting to scam and switch peoples accounts. I asked him who else he would recommend that I could call and inform so that we could protect others from this scam. He recommended that I call the FCC and the Bureau of Consumer Protection. A very helpful woman at the FCC (who laughed and said she also personally received that same scam phone call today) suggested that I contact you guys at the FTC, also. I'm very worried that my fellow senior citizens might fall prey to this latest scam...especially with our frigid cold temperatures here in PA this past week. Thank you.

There is one going around, where some one calls and wants to sign you up for social security since you will turn 65 in July. I have a ball with them and lets not forget the tech support scam. A new one is going around once more. Then the knee and back brace scam. The world famous lower your credit card interest rate. I almost have every one broke from calling me or my husband. I have a ball of fun with them and give them fits.

Cyber-attacks on small business has put thousands of good businesses out of business. It is the primary job of government to protect the greater community. Being a victim, training with FBI cyber unit there is no true protection. However, FTC appears to have a good approach for protection. Educational support. All small business manager-owners must upgrade their cyber skills.

I've been getting calls on my office phone for the past two weeks from the same number, no message is ever left on voice mail. When I finally was able to take the call, someone named Alex wanted to discuss veterans proceeds with me. He says he works for a company out of Ft. Lauderdale that is contracted by the Federal VA. He asked if I needed home repairs. Funny thing, I knew all along it was a scam, because I am not nor have ever served in the armed forces. These despicable people need to be prosecuted and locked under the jail for all the vulnerable people they steal from.

Hi.. Received a call this morning from Manuel - a 202 area code saying there was a package that was intercepted by the FTC at one of the terminals. The package had my name on it and it was from Las Vegas. Under the guise of his concern about money laundering, he opened the package and saw that I won $750,000. Did I want to claim it. I said no, please return it. It just didn't feel right and I guessed it was a scam.

Received a voicemail from “Apple” to call back. How is this phone number still I’m working order when you know it’s a scammer?

I have had 2 to 3 calls a day almost everyday from a company wanting to help me with my student loans. They use numbers from hospitals, banks and all different names that come up. The last number they called from was 615-284-7593 St. Thomas Hospital Midtown. I have asked them to not call. I have never ever had a student loan. I am 65 years old. Disabled. What bothers me is the using the hospital number I almost had a heart attack thinking someone in my family was hurt. The student loan place also sent me a letter of condolence for the death of my son. If I hadn’t just seen him I was appalled


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