ICFE eNEWS #15-26 - August 24th 2015
Penn Corner August 2015 - Update from the Federal Trade Commission
Data Brokers Sell to Scammers
has charged a data broker operation with illegally
selling sensitive information from online payday loan
applications to scammers who then raided people's accounts.
According to the complaint, the information collected from
applications included Social Security, credit card, and bank
account numbers. But instead of passing the information on to
legitimate payday lenders, the FTC says the company knowingly
sold it to scammers who used it to take millions out of people's
accounts and charge their credit cards.
Credit Repair Snare
Four people behind FTC Credit
a credit repair scheme that targeted Spanish
speakers — have agreed to settle FTC charges that they tricked
people into paying to get negative information removed from
their credit reports. According to the FTC, the company
guaranteed it could get people a credit score of 700 or more by
removing the information. To bolster its credibility, the
company also claimed it was licensed by the FTC. The truth: the
FTC doesn't license credit repair services, and removing
accurate negative information from a credit report is illegal.
In addition to a $2.4 million judgment, the defendants will be
banned from the credit repair services industry.
Medicare Card Con
A group of government imposters — who
convinced people to hand over their bank account information to
get new Medicare cards — has agreed to settle FTC charges.
Scammers targeted older people, telling them they needed bank
account numbers to verify a person's identity before a new
Medicare card could be sent, the FTC says. They assured people
no money would be taken out. But the FTC says it was a scam, and
people later found several hundred dollars missing from their
accounts. Never give out financial or other sensitive
information to someone who calls you out of the blue. Read
Government Imposter Scams for more.
Family Dollar Tree
Discount retailers Dollar Tree and
have agreed to sell 330 Family Dollar stores in 35
states to settle charges that Dollar Tree's proposed $9.2
billion acquisition of Family Dollar would likely be
anticompetitive. According to the FTC, Dollar Tree and Family
Dollar stores compete head-to-head in price, product assortment,
and quality, as well as location and customer service. The FTC's
order preserves that competition by requiring Dollar Tree to
sell the stores to a new owner that will continue to operate
"Scammers used consumer information
they bought from this operation to make millions in unauthorized
charges. Companies that collect people's sensitive information
and give it to scammers can expect to hear from the FTC."
Jessica Rich, Director of the FTC's
Bureau of Consumer Protection
And the Winner
Is... the FTC's Robocall Challenge
On August 13, the Partnership for
Public Service presented the FTC's Roberto Anguizola and
Kathleen Daffan, as well as the General Services
Administration's Tammi Marcoullier, with the Basics Award for
Ingenuity and Results, sponsored by former FDIC Chairperson
Sheila Bair. The team created the FTC Robocall Challenge, which
generated new technical tools to
stop unsolicited and illegal
The FTC is returning money to people
targeted by two different scams:
- In the case of Innovative Wealth
telemarking operation that falsely promised it could
reduce people's credit card interest rates to save them
thousands, the FTC has sent 10,387 checks totaling more than
$969,000 to people who lost money.
- The FTC also is mailing 3,133
checks totaling more than $87,000 to people who lost money to
the Your Yellow Book scheme, which tricked small businesses,
doctors' offices, retirement homes, religious schools, and
charitable organizations into paying for listings they didn't
ask for or want in an online "yellow pages" directory. More
information about the FTC's refund program is available on the
Follow the Lead Generation Workshop
The FTC will hold a workshop, Follow
the Lead: An FTC Workshop About Online Lead Generation, on
October 30, 2015, to explore the growing use of
generation. This is where online lead generators identify or
cultivate consumer interest in a product or service, and then
sell the "lead" information to third parties — in industries
including consumer lending and education. The workshop is free
and open to the public.
IN OTHER NEWS:
FTC Awards $25,000 Top Cash Prize for
Contest-Winning Mobile App That Blocks Illegal Robocalls
FTC Issues Statement of Principles
Regarding Enforcement of FTC Act as a Competition Statute
"Melanoma Detection" App Sellers
Barred from Making Deceptive Health Claims
Back to school time means forms and
more forms. Here are some tips to keep your child's info safe.
Storms happen. Make your life easier
by making sure your financial documents are up-to-date, in one
place, and portable.
Thinking about joining a gym?
a few tips to help you find a club that fits your needs — and
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Also, visit the ICFE's new Web site: StudentDebtHelp.org
Paul S. Richard
President - Executive Director
Institute of Consumer
Financial Education (ICFE)
About the ICFE:
The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) was founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton (creator of the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation). The ICFE is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending, increase savings and use credit more wisely.
The ICFE is an award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its education programs and Resources. It publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, which is updated annually. The ICFE has distributed over one million Credit/Debit Card Warning Labels and Credit/Debit Card Sleeves world wide.
The ICFE became an official partner with the Department of Defense/Financial Readiness Campaign in June of 2004.The ICFE was an active partner in the California Student Debt Resource Awareness Project (CASDRAP) which resulted in a new web site: (studentdebthelp.org). CASDRAP disbanded in 2010, shortly after the web site project was completed. In 2011 the ICFE assumed the single sponsorship of the (studentdebthelp.org) web site and is now responsible for its content and operation.
The ICFE is also an on-line help for consumers who spend too much. ICFE's spending help was featured in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips are from the ICFE's Money Instruction Book, our course in personal finance.
Visit the ICFE's other web sites at: www.financial-education-icfe.org and studentdebthelp.org. Both sites helps consumers and students with mending spending, learning about the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include: Ask Mr. G, a free eNews, and an online resource center for students, parents and educators, plus financial education learning tools and a book store.