FTC reopens and asks, 'What scams did we miss during shutdown'
With the government shutdown at least temporarily solved, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is asking the public, "What’s been going on?"
In a blog post, Jennifer Leach, Acting Associate Director of the FTC's Division of Consumer and Business Education, said, "Now that funding has been restored, our systems are live again, and you can report fraud to the FTC’s Consumer Sentinel. We’re anxious to know what scams you’ve been seeing so far in 2019."
Leach warned that family emergency scams are still a concern – wherein someone pretending to be a grandchild or family member calls with an emergency and asks you to wire money or buy gift cards for them.
Other ongoing scams Leach identified include:
Phishing scams – including emails that appear to be from your bank or credit card company but are really from scammers who want your personal information.
Tech support scams – wherein you get a pop-up, email or phone call saying your computer is broken – but it’s really a scammer after your money or access to all the information on your computer.
Social Security scams, where a caller pretends to be from the Social Security Administration and demands gift cards as payment for all sorts of things.
"That’s always, always a scam," Leach said. "We also got a lot of (*@&% robocalls. We know you did, too. But I finally got a blocker on my cell phone, and it really did make a difference."
What did you experience during the shutdown?
What scams have you run into? Job scams? Tax scams? Health insurance scams? The FTC wants to know.
If you have knowledge of a fraud or fraud attempt, report it at ftc.gov/complaint.