Identity theft tops list of consumer complaints for 14th consecutive year

The FTC announced its top 10 consumer complaints for 2013 today. Of the more than 2 million consumer complaints received…

  • Identity theft leads the field, with 14 percent of total complaints filed. Thirty percent of those were tax- or wage-related, which continues to be the largest category within identity theft complaints.
  • Coming in at a close second: Debt collection, with 10 percent.
  • Completing the trifecta: Banks and lenders, with 7 percent.
  • Rounding out the field: Imposter scams; telephone and mobile services; prizes, sweepstakes, and lotteries; auto related complaints; shop-at-home and catalog sales; television and electronic media; and advance payment for credit services.

The good news: Millions of consumers are beating the scammers. That’s because complaints matter at the FTC. If a business doesn't deliver on its promises, if someone cheats you out of your money, or if you've spotted a scam, you’ve been telling it to the FTC. Your complaints help us stop rip-off artists, scammers, and fraudsters. The FTC’s aggressive law enforcement efforts put the bad guys out of business, and our vigorous consumer education campaigns empower people just like you to make well-informed buying decisions and recognize frauds and scams.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


You're in not working

It seems that in my area those born prior to 1980/1990, we don't know or can't keep up with most of or all of the hi-tech advancements. The FTC info you put out via "E" is one of the best sources how to be safe from scammers et-al… Many institutions are available to sign on to for security info so you can stay abreast of current illegal activities occurring in real-time. Thank you.

I sent a copy of my passport to different people who were imposter scams. I don't want anyone using my Passport information. I will never be so naive.

I have a scan on my email, have not deleted it. How do I report this sort of thing. I've had several in the recent past. They are almost funny, when it is a lawyer that doesn't know how to spell or punctuate sentences correctly. How dumb can you get? I'd love to be able to report these when I got those.

It's probably not a real lawyer sending that e-mail. It could be from another country that doesn't know English that well. I've gotten faxes like that. It could be anyone sending that. It could be a computer virus too. Don't open any attachments from people you don't know.

It is really helpful to law enforcement for people to report scams even if they don't fall for it. Report it to the FTC and also report to your local District Attorney or State Attorney General's Office through the consumer protection or economic crimes unit

Receiving calls on home phone from someone saying he is Jason Miller with the IRS and to return his call at 1-716-442-3057, or there will be consequences. Have not returned calls.

I just got the same message from the same person however, the phone number to call back was 716-442-3058. I think this is a scam. I did report it to FTC.

There will be no consequences because this is just a scam, not the IRS. This scam is so prevalent that the IRS has set up their own page to help facilitate reporting. Here is the most important thing--do not give these callers any personal information or verify any information they may have. Just hang up on them.

I had an identity theft on my taxes plus one from my credit union. It took two years to clear the IRS.


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