Privacy, Identity & Online Security

Equifax isn’t calling

Ring, ring. "This is Equifax calling to verify your account information." Stop. Don’t tell them anything. They’re not from Equifax. It’s a scam. Equifax will not call you out of the blue.

The Equifax Data Breach: What to Do

If you have a credit report, there’s a good chance that you’re one of the 143 million American consumers whose sensitive personal information was exposed in a data breach at Equifax, one of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies.

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.

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.

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.

$10 million in refunds ‘in-bound’ to consumers

People who lost money to a telemarketing tech support scam will soon get an email with instructions to claim a partial refund. The refunds are the result of an FTC case against Advanced Tech Support, which also used the name Inbound Call Experts.

Working together to protect Texas consumers

When it comes to meeting ambitious goals, even the Lone Ranger knows that working with partners is more productive than working alone. And that’s why civil, criminal and regulatory enforcement agencies from across the Lone Star State came together in Dallas this week to talk about how to better protect Texans and build better partnerships.

No secret bank accounts to pay your bills

Another day, another scam. Case in point: the Federal Reserve Bank of New York reports that scammers are telling people they can pay their bills using so-called “secret accounts” or “Social Security trust accounts” and routing numbers at Federal Reserve Banks.

Uber settles with FTC over privacy and data security promises

As a consumer, you expect companies to honor their promises to protect your personal information. As the nation’s consumer protection agency, so does the FTC. Today, the FTC announced it reached an agreement with Uber to settle FTC charges that Uber abandoned its promises to take reasonable steps to protect consumers’ personal information and to make sure that Uber employees only accessed consumer information for appropriate business purposes.

Grandpa spots scammers

One of my favorite parts about working at the Federal Trade Commission is hearing stories of folks avoiding a scam. A recent story involves Lou, who picked up the phone and spotted the scam almost as soon as he heard the young man call him “Grandpa.” The caller said he’d been arrested for drunk driving, needed money for bail, and wanted Lou to call a “lawyer” who would explain everything. (All while not telling “Mom.”)

Pages