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Are you a blogger? Do you publish a newsletter, or post helpful information on social media? May is Older Americans Month, and a great time to help the people you care about learn how to avoid fraud. The FTC's free resources will make your job easier.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Let’s talk about Coronavirus scams

During this past year, the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout have reminded us how important it is to help each other through difficult times. In May, as we celebrate Older Americans Month, remember that one of the best ways to help your friends and family is to pass on what you know about how to spot and avoid Coronavirus-related scams. 

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Unwanted calls: Just block ’em and report ’em

Unwanted calls are annoying. They can feel like a constant interruption — and many are from scammers. Unfortunately, technology makes it easy for scammers to make millions of calls a day. So this week, as part of Older Americans Month, we’re talking about how to block unwanted calls — for yourself, and for your friends and family.

No money, honey.

It’s never too late to find love, and lots of dating sites and apps are there to help. But scammers are out to steal your heart, too…and then steal your money.

Celebrating Older Americans Month

During May, the FTC and federal and state organizations nationwide will celebrate Older Americans Month, with “Communities of Strength” as its theme. The FTC works to protect older adults year round, through law enforcement actions and the Pass It On fraud prevention campaign. Pass It On encourages people to share what they know to protect someone from a fraud, and to be a resource that others can turn to. This week, we’ll share some of what we know through a series of blogs about scams affecting older adults. We hope you’ll share these blogs in your community. You can link, forward, print, or copy all FTC content freely. And if you’re on social media, share this graphic through your network.

The FTC weighs in on repair restrictions

When you buy a new smartphone, computer, home appliance, or other product, you may not always think about whether it can be fixed if it breaks or has an issue. But here’s the thing: some manufacturers prevent you from fixing the things you buy. They might do things like gluing in batteries, limiting the availability of spare parts, and not giving you the repair instructions and software to help figure out the problem.  

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

FTC continues to crack down on companies peddling fake COVID treatments and cures

As part of our ongoing efforts to protect you from sellers of scam COVID-19 treatments, the FTC has sent 30 warning letters to companies that claimed their products can prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19. These letters gave the sellers 48 hours to notify the FTC of the specific actions they have taken to address the agency’s concerns. Companies failing to make adequate corrections could have faced lawsuits under the 2020 COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act. Not only does the law make it illegal to deceptively market products that claim to prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19, it also lets the FTC seek financial penalties. The good news: as a result of these letters, all the companies have stopped making the false or deceptive claims.

FTC sends customer refunds in three cases

The FTC works to fulfill its mission in many ways, including bringing cases against companies who are being unfair or deceptive. And it’s happy news when those cases result in refunds. Last year, FTC cases returned $483 million to people who lost money to companies the FTC sued. The FTC’s latest refund announcement involves checks totaling over $11 million going out to more than 11,000 people who paid E.M. Systems & Services, a company that falsely promised consumers with credit card debt that they would reduce their interest rates and save them thousands of dollars. After settling with First Data Merchant Services — the payment processor that made it possible for this company to collect credit card payments — the FTC is sending customers of E.M. Systems & Services 100% of their lost money back.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

COVID vaccines are FREE!

Scammers are doubling down on their efforts to scam people out of their money and personal information. That’s why the FTC and the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) are teaming up to remind you: No matter what anyone tells you, you can’t buy COVID-19 vaccines online and there’s no out-of-pocket cost to get the shots. Here are some ways to avoid a vaccine-related scam.

FTC and DOJ bring first case under new COVID-19 consumer protection law

There are no supplements proven to treat or prevent COVID-19. But that doesn’t stop some companies from making these kind of unsubstantiated claims, or even false claims that their products work as well — or better — than available COVID-19 vaccines. If you see claims like these, the FTC wants you to ignore them.

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