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Money & Credit

Scammers and your Notre Dame donations

Following last week’s devastating fire that destroyed much of the famous and historically important Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, fundraising efforts have begun. Many generous people may decide to donate money toward rebuilding efforts – and scammers know that. They’re ready to take donations, too, so here are some things to consider before you give to an organization or a crowdfunding project:

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Money & Credit

Online lending company broke the law. FTC counts the ways.

If you need to borrow money to consolidate credit card debt, make home or auto repairs, or pay other unexpected bills, a personal installment loan may be an option.

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Money & Credit

SSA imposters top IRS in consumer loss reports

Have you gotten calls about supposed problems with your Social Security number from callers pretending they’re with the Social Security Administration (SSA)? If so, you’re not alone. Our latest Data Spotlight finds that reports about SSA imposters are surging, while reports about IRS imposters have taken a dive.

Financial tips for 2019 graduates

Congratulations students and parents! It won’t be long before young people across the country will put on their caps and gowns to celebrate their graduations. Many graduation speakers offer advice, some based on their own life experiences. The FTC has some practical advice to offer, too.

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Money & Credit

Snack subscription service leaves bad taste

Food delivery services can be a convenience for people with busy lives. Free trial offers and online reviews can help people decide which service they want to use. But when reviews are deliberately skewed and subscription terms are hidden, that’s not just unhelpful. It’s against the law.

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Money & Credit

Ads for diamond jewelry should be crystal clear

If friends know you’re shopping for diamond jewelry, they may say, “Remember the 4Cs: color, cut, clarity and carat.” Here are three more important letters for jewelry shoppers: F-T-C. The FTC enforces laws against false advertising and created the Jewelry Guides, which show jewelry businesses how to avoid making deceptive claims. FTC staff recently looked through diamond jewelry ads on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and other sites to find out what shoppers are seeing.

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Money & Credit

Operation Donate with Honor continues

Last year, the FTC and state charity regulators joined in Operation Donate with Honor to stop sham veterans charities from lying to donors. Today the FTC is announcing that it shut down two more operations that collected donations with false promises of helping veterans and military service members.

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Money & Credit

Donating to help police or other first responders

Some good charities do great work to help first responders, our everyday heroes. Unfortunately, a few charities say they’ll help law enforcement officers, firefighters or their families, but do very little. They spend the vast majority of donations on fundraising, salaries and other expenses. That’s what happened with the Disabled Police and Sheriffs Foundation (DPSF). The FTC and the State of Missouri announced today that they stopped this sham charity.

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Money & Credit

Getting calls from the SSA?

Probably not. At least, not from the real SSA. But how many of you have gotten calls from someone who said they were the Social Security Administration? And maybe showed the real SSA phone number (1-800-772-1213) or a number close to it on your caller ID? Lots, right?

It’s National Consumer Protection Week 2019

Welcome to National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW) 2019. This marks 21 years of commemorating the important work that the FTC, state attorneys general offices and many community partner organizations do to protect consumers across the country.

NCPW is a time to help people understand their consumer rights and make well-informed decisions about their money. Our team at the FTC works hard to shut down scams and sue those who break the law. But one of our best tools to protect consumers is education.

You are a vital part of this effort. We need people like you, talking to those in your community about the issues that are affecting you. Whether it’s imposter scams, dealing with debt collection, or recovering from identity theft, the FTC has resources to help you start those conversations, and share important tips with your friends and family.

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