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If influencers are paid, they must disclose it

My son loves to watch expert gamers playing video games on YouTube. Some of these online gamers have millions of followers who, like my son, watch them for hours, know all about them, and want to be just like them. They’re true online celebrities, influencers. I will never understand the fascination with watching others play a video game for hours, but I do understand that if online gamers are being paid to endorse a product in their videos or social media posts, they have to disclose that to their followers. It’s fair and it’s the law.

Help stop fraud this Hispanic Heritage Month

If you follow this blog, you probably have seen our fotonovelas. These are short graphic novels in Spanish that tell stories about scams prevalent in Latino communities. The fotonovelas are based on real stories from people who reported fraud to us. Who exactly are they? People just like you and me who reported a scam, and who want to share their stories to help others. Check out this video to meet some of them, and learn how you can take action to help stop fraud and scams.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

It’s National Preparedness Month: Time to make a plan

The devastation of Hurricane Harvey stresses the importance for all of us — regardless of where we live — to prepare as best we can for weather emergencies that can impact our lives and communities. The FTC has information to help you prepare for, deal with, and recover from different aspects of a weather emergency.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Helping wounded warriors

David Winfrey was one of the excellent panelists at our recent military financial workshop in San Antonio. David is a financial counselor at Fort Sam Houston. He has a passion to help wounded warriors with the challenges they face. David says his clients were “sailing along and then there was a shipwreck... often they are on a rudderless raft, floating with the current… My immediate goal is to get them into a boat where they are rowing toward a goal.”

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Lenovo adware created security holes

If you bought a Lenovo laptop between August 2014 and June 2015, you might have heard about the VisualDiscovery software created by a company named Superfish. VisualDiscovery was a pre-installed adware program that showed comparable products when you shopped online. But there was more to the software than met the eye.

Hurricane Harvey scams: Callers lie about flood insurance

One thing we’ve learned at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is that scams often follow the news – especially when there’s a natural disaster, like Hurricane Harvey, in the headlines. Case in point: Colleagues at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) tell us homeowners and renters are getting robocalls telling them their flood premiums are past due.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

Rental cars: Life in the toll lane

If you’re planning a business trip or vacation, you may have to make a decision about how to pay tolls when you rent a car. Most rental car companies offer ways to pay tolls automatically, but that convenience comes at a cost.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

TaxSlayer: File this one under authentication

Have you ever filed your taxes using an online tax prep account? If so, you’ll want to know about the FTC’s recent settlement with TaxSlayer, LLC.

Phantom debt collectors impersonate law firms

Getting a call from a debt collector can be stressful. But it can be downright frightening when the caller uses lies, profanity and threats to try to get you to pay. In a case announced today, the FTC says a debt collection operation in Charlotte, NC pretended to be lawyers. Really, they were not lawyers and had no authority to collect debts.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Wise giving in the wake of Hurricane Harvey

It’s heartbreaking to see people lose their lives, homes, and businesses to the ongoing flooding in Texas. But it’s despicable when scammers exploit such tragedies to appeal to your sense of generosity.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

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