If you have a phone, you’ve probably heard from an IRS imposter — someone claiming you owe thousands of dollars and better pay up immediately, or else terrible things will happen. In the last nine months, more than 111,000 of you reported calls like that to the FTC, and dozens wrote blog comments about callers with South Asian accents posing as IRS agents.
Crowdfunding is the use of online platforms to fund a project or cause by raising money from a large number of people. As part of its FinTech series, the FTC will take a closer look at crowdfunding during a half-day forum on October 26.
Earlier this year, the FTC sued Volkswagen for falsely claiming that its diesel cars had low levels of harmful emissions. A federal judge has approved the FTC order that requires Volkswagen to provide up to $10 billion to owners and lessees of VW and Audi 2.0 liter diesel cars. The FTC has pointers for people who own or lease a 2009 to 2015 VW TDI Beetle, Golf, Jetta, Passat or Audi TDI A3.
Over the summer, we told you about a mortgage relief scam that defrauded homeowners in financial distress. The case especially affected Spanish-speaking homeowners in Southern California. According to the FTC, Brookstone Law and Advantis Law firms convinced homeowners to make an upfront payment to join a mortgage lawsuit against banks and lenders, supposedly to help them avoid foreclosure, get rid of their mortgages, or get money from their lenders.
What’s one kind of scam targeting you and everyone you know? Imposter scams. They happen when scammers pretend to be a person, business, or government agency you trust, then try to convince you to send money. One of their latest targets: people who own tractor-trailer trucks and other commercial vehicles.
If you’re just getting by, and someone offers you the chance to earn more money through a business opportunity, you might be willing to listen, right?
Unfortunately, those offers often turn out to be just another scam. Today the FTC announced charges against three people and multiple companies behind a telemarketing scheme that targeted older people and veterans, and took millions of dollars from people with promises they would multiply their investment.
Whether you’re 16 or 60, buying a used car can be an exciting experience. But it can also be a big financial commitment, with some industry reports estimating that the average price of a used car is close to $20,000. A new consumer.gov article gives you tips for buying a used car, written in a plain and simple style that cuts to the chase.
Scammers know people pay attention to warning signs, like the car’s “check engine” light, or railroad crossing gates and weather alerts. So when a fraudster wants to grab your attention, he may disguise his pitch as a warning. At the FTC’s request, a federal court temporarily shut down and froze the assets of an operation that allegedly used phony online warnings about computer security, and deceived people into spending millions of dollars on unnecessary computer technical support services.