Americans are among the most generous people in the world, contributing more than $373 billion to charity in 2015, according to The Giving Institute. We’re all familiar with phone calls, mailers, and TV and radio spots seeking donations, but the times are changing. Evolving marketing practices and new technologies have introduced new ways to solicit contributions and donate. That’s just one of the reasons the FTC and the National Association of State Charities Officials (NASCO) are hosting a workshop on March 21, 2017 in Washington, DC.
Did you ever sign up for a free trial of a product you heard about on the radio? Some sellers will send you — and charge you — a lot more than you agreed to. The FTC says one group of dietary supplement marketers sold products through deceptive “risk free” offers and charged people repeatedly for unwanted products.
Here’s some good news for everyone who likes to write — and read — product reviews. A new federal law says businesses can't use contracts that prevent you from writing a truthful comment, or penalize you if you do.
Last fall, the FTC shut down an operation called Global Connect, which sent deceptive pop-up messages to people’s computers. The pop-ups claimed the computers had problems when they really didn’t, and the operators scared thousands of people into paying hundreds of dollars each for tech support services they didn’t need.We recently learned that some of these same people are getting called again.
When the FTC wants to know whether funeral homes are following the Funeral Rule and giving people the required price information about funeral products and services, it sends undercover investigators into funeral homes. The investigators pretend to be someone who needs to make funeral arrangements.
If you’ve defaulted on a federal student loan, chances are you’ll hear from a debt collector. Debt collectors must obey the law when trying to find people who owe money. One student loan debt collector — GC Services, LP — failed to follow the law, and the FTC is taking action against them.
I enjoy reading magazines related to my hobbies, for trends and inspiration. But sometimes I get overwhelmed by renewal notices. Keeping track of the expiration dates for my magazine subscriptions can get confusing, especially when I get multiple renewal notices for the same publication. Sound familiar? Well, here are a few tips to help keep track of magazine subscriptions.
Today, checks went out to 1,367 people who bought a Mercola tanning system after January 1, 2012. Why’s that? Well, in April 2016, the FTC announced a settlement with Joseph Mercola and his companies because, according to the FTC, the ads for Mercola’s products had claims that were false or not backed by science.
Attorney, Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, FTC
For decades, only you knew the television programs you watched from your living room. That’s starting to change. The FTC recently explored this at its Smart TV workshop. The data generated when you watch television can reveal a lot about you and your household. So, before a company pulls up a chair next to you and starts taking careful notes on everything you watch (and then shares it with its partners), it should ask if that’s O.K. with you. VIZIO wasn’t doing that, and the FTC stepped in.
Did you get a high school “diploma” from Stratford Career Institute or are you currently enrolled in its high school program? If so, you want to read this. Last February, the FTC sued Stratford Career Institute for misleading advertising of its high school program. Today, the FTC announcedd that Stratford has agreed to return money to people it deceived.
If you decide to buy a water filtration system, there are a lot of choices. If a company says its filtration products are “Built in the USA,” that might influence your decision. But what would you think if you learned those filtration products were actually imported from overseas?
Associate Director, Consumer & Business Education, FTC
Today, the FTC announced a settlement with Volkswagen over 3.0 liter diesel cars the company claimed had low levels of harmful emissions, but did not. The settlement affects more than 77,000 cars made by VW, Audi or Porsche. These cars were not covered by the settlement announced last year, which covered similar false advertising for VW and Audi 2.0 liter diesel cars.