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Volkswagen repays $9.5 billion to car owners and lessees

You might remember that, back in 2016, the FTC sued and then settled with Volkswagen and Porsche over their multi-million dollar “clean diesel” marketing campaigns. The problem? The VWs, Audis, and Porsches they said were “clean” actually had an illegal device to let the cars pass emissions tests. Not so clean, after all. The settlement that the FTC attorneys and I negotiated – along with the private bar – got Volkswagen and Porsche to agree to pay up to $10 billion to replace or repair the more than 550,000 cars affected. That meant the full retail price of those cars – plus repaying people for things including their time, and taxes and registration fees.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Explore data to find scams near you

Scams happen everywhere: in every region, state, and community across the country, including your own. You might be wondering, “What kinds of scams are happening in my area?”

A deceptive credit card interest rate reduction offer

Monthly credit card bills can be a drag, especially when you’re feeling financially strapped. Finding ways to lower those bills — sometimes by simply calling your credit card company directly and asking for a lower rate — can save you lots of cash. So what about those companies that call with a “guaranteed” credit card interest rate reduction offer (for a small fee) and a promise to save you thousands of dollars? Most likely, it’s a deal designed to dupe you out of money.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Hang up on business imposter scams

Scammers love to use the same old tricks in new ways. One of their favorites is to pose as a business or government official to pressure you into sending them money or personal information. Now, some scammers are pretending to be popular online shopping websites, phishing for your personal information.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

USS Bonhomme Richard – giving to sailors in need

You may have seen reports of the fire that destroyed the USS Bonhomme Richard. Dozens of sailors fled the burning ship and lost all their possessions. When a distressing event like this happens, many folks look for ways to help. But you also want to make sure your money gets to the people you want to help. In this case, scammers are making that more difficult. Officials at Naval Base Coronado have sounded the alarm about fake crowdfunding pages trying to take advantage of the crisis.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Big FTC win against student loan debt relief firm

Just about a year ago, we told you about a case the FTC brought against a student loan debt relief firm. The FTC alleged that the operators of Mission Hills Federal, Federal Direct Group, National Secure Processing, and The Student Loan Group bilked borrowers out of millions of dollars. Today, we have some great news to share: a federal court in California has ruled in our favor.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Keep calm and avoid Coronavirus scams

One thing we know about scammers is that they follow the headlines. So it’s not surprising that we’ve seen so many Coronavirus-related scams recently. From scammers selling fake COVID-19 cures and treatments to people posing as government officials offering Coronavirus stimulus checks — nothing seems to be off-limits.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Avoiding a cryptocurrency scam

Yesterday some high-profile people had their Twitter accounts hacked by scammers who sent out fake tweets asking followers to send money using Bitcoin – a type of cryptocurrency or digital money.

Promises for lower credit card interest rates weren’t true

When you’re having trouble paying your credit card bills, getting a lower interest rate to keep your balance in check could be a game changer. Unfortunately, companies that promise to get you those lower rates often end up leaving you deeper in debt.

Utility company calling? Don’t fall for it.

Every day, millions of people who have lost their jobs are making difficult choices about how to pay their bills. As the Coronavirus continues to spread, scammers are taking advantage of people’s heightened economic anxiety. Their latest ploy is posing as representatives from utility companies to dupe people out of their cash and personal information by convincing them their utilities will be shut off if they don’t pay.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

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