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Money & Credit

It’s showtime at the FTC!

Videos from the Federal Trade Commission may not feature a cast of celebrity actors, but they’re still entertaining. Produced by the nation’s consumer protection agency, these videos offer practical, useful, and memorable messages that can save you money, time, and aggravation. And they’re free.

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Money & Credit

We work to get your money back

The FTC brings lawsuits to stop unfair and deceptive business practices. One way we help right those wrongs is by getting refunds to people who lost money. And from July 2017 to June 2018, people got more than $2.3 billion in refunds from FTC cases.

Earlier this week, the FTC released our annual report announcing these results. A new map shows how much money and how many checks the FTC mailed to each state, so you can see the FTC refunds sent to people in your area. You also can find out how the FTC knows who should get refunds and the steps we take to return as much money as possible.

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Money & Credit

FTC halts another phantom debt collection scheme

Getting a call about a debt you don’t owe – or even recognize – can be annoying. It can be downright scary when the caller claims to be a lawyer and threatens legal action if you don’t pay. Such are the ploys of phantom debt collectors: lies, harassment, intimidation and threats.

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Money & Credit

Time to order materials for NCPW!

National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW) 2019 is just around the corner. This year, NCPW is March 3 – 9, 2019. That’s just about a month away, so now is the time to jump into planning.

Fight back against tax identity theft

It’s Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week – a terrific time to get up to date on protecting yourself from identity thieves who try to claim your tax refund and imposters who pretend they’re from the IRS to get your money. Come to one of the two telephone town hall meetings happening on Thursday, January 31 – one at 10 a.m. ET and another at 1 p.m. ET. Experts from the FTC, AARP, and the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration will talk about tax identity theft and more.

What’d we miss?

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.

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Money & Credit

This is what a Social Security scam sounds like

Earlier this month, we told you about a growing scam: people pretend to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) and try to get your Social Security number or your money. That scam is now growing exponentially. To compare: in 2017, we heard from 3,200 people about SSA imposter scams, and those people reported losing nearly $210,000. So far THIS year: more than 35,000 people have reported the scam, and they tell us they’ve lost $10 million.

Here’s what one of those scam calls sound like:

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Money & Credit

Netflix phishing scam: Don’t take the bait

Phishing is when someone uses fake emails or texts to get you to share valuable personal information – like account numbers, Social Security numbers, or your login IDs and passwords. Scammers use your information to steal your money, your identity, or both. They also use phishing emails to get access to your computer or network. If you click on a link, they can install ransomware or other programs that can lock you out of your data.

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Money & Credit

Fake calls about your SSN

The FTC is getting reports about people pretending to be from the Social Security Administration (SSA) who are trying to get your Social Security number and even your money. In one version of the scam, the caller says your Social Security number has been linked to a crime (often, he says it happened in Texas) involving drugs or sending money out of the country illegally. He then says your Social is blocked – but he might ask you for a fee to reactivate it, or to get a new number. And he will ask you to confirm your Social Security number.

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Money & Credit

Putting cash in the mail

We’ve been warning you about scammers asking you to pay with gift cards or by wiring money. Scammers love getting you to pay that way because they can get your money fast and disappear. It’s almost as good as getting you to send cold, hard cash. Which must have occurred to them, too, because some scammers are now going low-tech and asking people to send cash in the mail. Sometimes they even tell people to divide the cash between pages of a magazine.

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Money & Credit

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