Money & Credit

Consumer complaints to the FTC increased in 2015

The FTC received more than 3 million complaints in 2015. That’s up from 2.5 million in 2014. Some of the increase can be attributed to the fact that more people know to complain to the FTC about bad business practices, frauds and scams. Technology helped, too — more complaints are reaching the FTC through the convenience of mobile apps. The top three complaint categories are still debt collection, identity theft, and imposter scams. The FTC took aggressive action in 2015 to help address each area and will continue to make each a high priority in 2016. 

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Money & Credit

No debt relief for mortgages and student loans

If you feel in over your head with debt, a company’s promise to lower your mortgage or student loan payment might seem like a lifeline. Unfortunately, dishonest companies promising debt relief can make a bad situation worse.

Today the FTC announced it filed charges against Good EBusiness for debt relief schemes that targeted people struggling to pay off mortgages and student loans. People paid thousands of dollars in fees, the FTC alleges, only to find themselves out the money with no relief in sight.

Red-carpet ready videos

Okay. FTC videos may not have a star-studded array of Hollywood actors, but they are entertaining. What’s more, they offer practical, useful, and memorable messages that can save you money, time, and aggravation.

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Money & Credit

A year in debt collection

Making a plan is one thing. Sticking to it: quite another. During 2015, the FTC made a plan to address some new and troubling issues in debt collection. Throughout the course of the year, we stuck to that plan – bringing a record number of new cases, banning bad debt collectors, talking with industry, and finding new ways to do outreach.

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Money & Credit

Spread the word about government imposters

We’re hearing from our colleagues that those pesky government imposters are at it again, using the FTC’s name to try to con people into paying them for something. Whether it’s to clean up your credit report, give you a prize, resolve a complaint against you, or pay off a debt you owe, they’re all lies. The message may be a call or an email, but it isn’t from the Federal Trade Commission, or any other federal agency.

two overlapping dialogue bubbles

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Money & Credit

Don’t get taken by a supplies surprise

It’s great getting stuff for a deal or as a free sample. But when a seller says something is cheap or free, then sends you a whopping bill, that’s not so great — and it’s against the law.

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Money & Credit

Here’s what snow days are great for

Snowed in? Here’s a cabin-fever buster – catch up on FTC videos, games, and audio tips! It’s the quickest way to learn how to protect yourself, and your family, from fraud and scams.

Skewed Cupid

Valentine’s Day conjures up images of hearts, flowers and a double-decker box of chocolate, nougat and nuts. But, metaphorically speaking, what happens when that stupendous bouquet of roses you got turns out to be a pile of weeds? Love might cloud our vision, but that doesn’t mean you have to turn a blind eye to consumer pitfalls. If you know what to look for, you can avoid some big missteps. While these are probably the least romantic Valentine sentiments ever, they just might save you some heartbreak down the road.

line drawing

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Money & Credit

Oh no, it's that time again!

Put the long winter months to good use by getting your financial house in order for the rest of the year. A great place to start is to review your credit report, which can affect your ability to shop for a car or a home, or even apply for a job. It can also help you spot errors and prevent identity theft.

Lucky for you, we have a short video explaining just how to go about getting your free annual credit report.

Free Credit Report video

GM and dealers agree to tell car buyers about recalls

You’re looking to buy a used car and want some peace of mind, so you choose a dealer that advertises rigorous, bumper-to-bumper safety inspections. You can drive off the lot with confidence, right? Not so fast.

Today the FTC announced that General Motors Company, Jim Koons Management Company, and Lithia Motors have agreed to settle charges they deceptively marketed their used cars when they made claims about their comprehensive inspections.

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Money & Credit

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