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Identity Theft News Headlines

Below are the latest identity theft information and scam alerts from the FTC.


Violating Made in USA order lands filtration seller in hot water
Wed, 17 Apr 2019 11:51:24 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

When a company settles a case with the FTC, it’s not just water under the bridge. An FTC administrative order includes provisions designed to prevent similar deceptive or unfair practices in the future – and violations of those orders may result in civil penalties. The FTC just announced a proposed settlement with Georgia-based iSpring Water Systems for violating a 2017 order related to the company’s Made in USA claims.

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The Avant settlement: New financial platforms, established consumer protections
Mon, 15 Apr 2019 14:53:20 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

“There is nothing new under the sun.” It’s from the Book of Ecclesiastes and who are we to disagree? So even when innovative products enter the market – for example, new platforms offering financial services – fundamental consumer protection principles remain constant. And as the FTC’s $3.85 million settlement with Avant, LLC, demonstrates, that includes representations and practices related to online lending.

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Bogus celebrity testimonials and phony formats: DON’TS for advertisers and affiliates
Wed, 10 Apr 2019 13:58:34 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

“Viagra for the brain.” It’s a slogan designed to attract the attention of consumers concerned about cognition. Then there was a massive online ad campaign of “news” websites featuring supposed testimonials from people like Bill Gates and the now-late Dr. Stephen Hawking. It’s no wonder people forked over millions for supplements that went by names like Geniux, Xcel, EVO, and Ion-Z.

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FTC’s Approach to Consumer Privacy: Watch the webcast live
Tue, 09 Apr 2019 08:44:27 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

We do our best to keep the puffery in check. So when we say an event features a star-studded line-up of panelists, we think we can substantiate that claim. The FTC’s ongoing Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century have brought luminaries together to discuss the impact on the FTC’s mission of broad-based changes in the economy, evolving business practices, and tech developments.

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FTC workshop looks into loot boxes
Mon, 08 Apr 2019 11:14:38 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

Gamers call them loot boxes – in-game rewards players can buy that contain a random assortment of virtual items. The loot may help players advance in an online game or allow them to customize their avatars. The rewards may be virtual, but they’ve become a very real revenue stream for game developers.

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It’s unwise to incentivize positive skewed reviews
Wed, 03 Apr 2019 14:49:03 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

Is there anything you can’t get delivered to your front door? (And yes, home renovators will attest you can even get a front door delivered to your front door.) The burgeoning subscription model can offer convenience to customers, but only if companies honor established consumer protection principles.

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Warning letters re-”mined” diamond sellers to describe products accurately
Tue, 02 Apr 2019 11:09:37 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

Remember the old Superman movie where the Man of Steel squeezed carbon in his hand to create a diamond? That’s not how it’s done, but these days not everything sparkly comes from a mine. In addition to mined diamonds, consumers can choose simulated diamonds or diamonds created in a laboratory. What matters to consumers – and the FTC – is that companies accurately describe what they’re selling.

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From hero to zero: “Charities” claimed to help police and vets, but pocketed proceeds
Thu, 28 Mar 2019 12:29:22 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

To many Americans, the phrase “We support our troops” is more than just a bumper sticker. They put their money where their heart is and contribute to organizations that benefit members of the military – or police officers, first responders, or others who serve. Their generous intent shouldn’t be undermined by sham charities that allocate the lion’s share of donations not to promised services, but to telemarketing, salaries, and other overhead.

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Office Depot and Support.com to pay $35 million for falsely claiming scan detected signs of malware on consumers’ computers
Wed, 27 Mar 2019 17:50:31 -0400 - By Lesley Fair

It’s an illegal practice the FTC has challenged for decades: companies convincing consumers to pay for “repairs” on products that don’t really need fixing. The FTC alleges that Office Depot and service vendor Support.com engaged in a 21st century version of that misleading tactic. According to the complaint, the defendants tricked customers into spending millions on repairs by deceptively claiming they had found malware symptoms or infections on consumers’ computers.

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Annual Highlights: A quick run-down of 2018
Wed, 27 Mar 2019 09:34:46 -0400 - By Carol Kando-Pineda

The FTC focuses most of its time and attention on protecting consumers and promoting competition. Every so often, we stop and take stock. For example, check out our just-released Annual Highlights for a detailed round-up of some of the FTC’s 2018 consumer protection accomplishments.

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For more headline news from the FTC, please visit the FTC website at www.ftc.gov

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