The 411 on fraud in the 404

When is it uplifting to talk about obstacles to economic opportunities? When a room full of people at a joint conference of the NAACP and the FTC spend a day making the connections we all need to help overcome scams and exactly those obstacles in our communities.

That’s what happened in Atlanta late last month, when state and federal government agencies, consumer advocacy groups, legal services organizations, and NAACP chapter leaders met. We talked about the frauds that affect the African American community – housing issues, debt collection, short-term loan scams, car-buying issues, and income and employment scams. Of course, many communities see these scams, but the impact on the African American community – not just in Georgia, but nation-wide – is clear.

Here’s some of what we heard:

  • African Americans are denied mortgages at a higher rate than other groups – even when credit ratings and salaries are the same.
  • Some debt collectors are threatening people with arrest to get them to pay – and the person might not even owe the debt.
  • Job scams are alive and well, promising certifications that will “guarantee” jobs (they don’t), or offering good government jobs but actually selling training materials. Some investment scams operate the same way, but charge some hefty up-front fees.
  • Georgia authorities are seeing a drop-off in mortgage fraud – but an uptick in auto loan fraud. Sometimes by the same convicted mortgage lenders.

At the FTC, we know that fraud affects every community, and last month’s discussion bears that out. It also shows how certain communities can be targeted – but also how there are advocacy, legal services, and government agencies working every day to fight scams. Last month’s meeting, along with the Scam Jam held that evening, helped us find new and better ways to work together to protect the people in our communities. We’ll keep working to apply those lessons to communities nationwide.


We still have a long way to go. I can only imagine that similar biased activity takes place with other minorities in the USA. While advances have been made, racism remains a big problem in our society and societies around the world.

I am a white female older person and I am glad to say thank you for protecting all people. Unfortunately a lot of people targeted are of all colors and I was raised to look at the inside of a person rather than the outside. Your work is difficult and time consuming but remember there are people who appreciate our government and this great country we live in.

So true. Though we don't say it often thank you for the good work your organization do.

I found myself very frustrated and disappointed when trying to apply for jobs,I am forced to enroll in school to be to able to apply for a job.This has to stop. I feel so frustrated that I want to avoid this and affects my attitude towards looking for work.

This is so disgrace that our people doing it I used to hard this type of matter I wasn't sure until I come to a broad and see is really disgusting , because of little things our people used to damaged us in every aspect of nation wide range , but also there's Africans that can do there best to be good ambassador in nationwide they are not able to get that offer , only bad ones they are able to stay abroad , still some Africans they just know their self they don't care about brothers and sisters that are in home I hope every African to wake up from deep sleeping to start cleaning the damaged that they done it.

I was scamed

If this is the nature of things going on the the fraudulent chessboard of business dealings, then we need to ask the three branches of government to out-law all credit and debit cards, and to place the three credit agencies under federal jurisdiction,thus making fraud a a federal issue exacting several federal jail time to even the most petty fraud perpetrator, This web of financial deception has created all Americans vulnerable to fraud-rape. If it does not stop, the Americans need to just pull-out of all credit, period...

I have seen as well as been the target of job scammers.
Of course I reported it to the state Job Service.
The perps were identified and repremanded.
No legal action was taken other than to disallow further job postings on the State employment service.
(for all the good that did ...)

I have since retired and am able to live on my Army retirement pay and 40% VA disability pension along with the meager Social Security pension.

I personally feel that this topic is like the weather.
Everyone talks about it, but nothing is done to actually stop it ...


I have had it! I have sent several letters to FTC about this company ACS, Advance Cash Services. Well apparently I have been taken as a fool. I received a letter yesterday from CashNet who say I owe money when I supposedly paid it off with this ACS agency. This ACS agency told me that they were the mother company for PayDay loans so I paid them over $5500 in the past year and a half for nothing except to ruin my credit. I asked our States Attorney for advice as well as our Sheriff and you and I got nothing! I see where you have helped African Americans/Latinos and Spanish with their problems with fraud but I guess b/c I'm elderly it's ok and expected. Well I guess I'm just a dumb old white woman who is on the brink of bankruptcy but it's ok b/c I should of known better. No thanks!

The FTC assists people in every community. We know that it's never ok for a person to be defrauded.

You can report problems with a debt collector to your state Attorney General’s office, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Your Attorney General’s office can help you determine your rights under your state’s law.

If you need more help, you could check with a legal aid lawyer  or another attorney in your state. Some state bar associations help people find a lawyer, so you could search online for your state association and contact them.

Credit counselors help people with financial problems. This article tells you about choosing a Credit Counselor, and getting help with debt.

Great comments concerning jobs situations. The skin pigmentation should not have any bearing on the job qualifications, but today it does. No matter your education or experienced level. The society we lived look a skin pigmentation before resume or applications. The other insights are when accepted as an employee, the company still discriminate and think the employee is not taking notices, but they are. They will give a promotion when the person does not qualify for the position. This is wrong also. This type of situation or acts are very difficult to prove it is racism, but form my point of view it is racism. They can't prove that it is not, but the employee has difficult time proving unless documentation or two or more witness will speak up and stand strong on the issues. Keep supporting the employee the need help desperately some times. Thanks for your assistance in these many situations concerning employees.

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