Business Opportunities | Children’s Online Privacy Protection | Computers and Technology (On Guard) | Credit and Insurance — Prescreened | Credit and Loans | “Do Not Call” Registry | Funerals | Gas Saving Tips | Home Energy Savings | Identity Theft | Information Security | Investments | Mail Fraud | Office Supply Scams | Spam
Want to “be your own boss,” “work from home,” or just “make extra money”? Then you may be tempted by an ad for a business opportunity. Before you open your checkbook, check out the offer. Fraudulent business opportunity promoters use the classifieds and the Internet to tout all kinds of offers, from pay phone and vending machine routes to work-at-home businesses like medical billing and envelope stuffing. Too often, these ads make promises - about earnings, locations, merchandise, or marketability — that sound great, but aren't truthful. The result: consumers are getting ripped off, losing money instead of making it. Learn more about considering a business opportunity.
The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), passed by Congress in October 1998, requires the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to issue and enforce rules concerning children's online privacy. The FTC issued the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule in November 1999; it has been in effect since April 21, 2000. The Rule's primary goal: to place parents in control over what information is collected from their children online. Learn more about the Chlidren's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).
Practical tips from the federal government and the technology industry to help you be on guard against Internet fraud, secure your computer, and protect your personal information. Learn more about protecting yourself against Internet fraud.
Many companies that solicit new credit card accounts and insurance policies use prescreening to identify potential customers for the products they offer. Learn more about the FTC's prescreened offers of credit and insurance.
Almost every day, you are involved in some type of financial transaction requiring an educated decision — Whether you are shopping for a mortgage or auto loan, checking the accuracy of your credit report, dealing with debt collectors, or looking for ways to protect your personal financial information. Learn more about credit and loan information.
The National Do Not Call Registry gives you a choice about whether to receive telemarketing calls at home. Most telemarketers should not call your number once it has been on the registry for 31 days. If they do, you can file a complaint at the Federal Trade Commission website. You can register your home or mobile phone for free. Learn more about the National Do Not Call Registry from the Federal Trade Commission.
When a loved one dies, grieving family members and friends often are confronted with dozens of decisions about the funeral — all of which must be made quickly and often under great emotional duress. What kind of funeral should it be? What funeral provider should you use? Should you bury or cremate the body, or donate it to science? What are you legally required to buy? What other arrangements should you plan? And, as callous as it may sound, how much is it all going to cost? Learn more about consumer rights under the funeral rule.
Important information that can save you money: gas tank, driver's seat; steering wheel, under the hood, tires, and trunk. Learn more about saving gas.
Whether you are buying a refrigerator, thinking about ways to reduce your home heating and cooling bills, or trying to save money on gas, there are ways that can save you money in every room of your home. Learn more about saving energy.
Identity theft has become an epidemic in Minnesota and across the United States, claiming over 10 million victims last year alone. It's also one of the most costly crimes to consumers and businesses, and is the fastest growing white collar crime in America according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Securing IDs is essential to not only protecting consumers from financial loss and shoring up the world's finest financial system, but also to securing our homeland from criminals, drug dealers, and terrorists. The protection of personal identification and financial records is an important part in preventing such plagues as meth addiction, white collar fraud, and terrorism.
Constituents should be vigilant to protect themselves and our community from the dangers caused by identity thieves. If you become a victim of ID theft, please visit the Federal Trade Commission identity theft Web Site for advice on how to secure your personal data as well as what to do if your identity is stolen.
OnGuardOnline.gov provides practical tips from the federal government and the technology industry to help you be on guard against Internet fraud, secure your computer, and protect your personal information. You can also take their tests to learn how to avoid becoming a victim of phishing, spam, spyware and other online scams.
Learn more about consumer protection:
- How to get your free annual credit report
- The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
- The National Do Not Call Registry
Are you taking steps to protect personal information? Safeguarding sensitive data in your files and on your computers is just plain good business. After all, if that information falls into the wrong hands, it can lead to fraud or identity theft. Learn more about protecting personal information.
Get the facts on how to invest wisely and avoid fraud. Be wary of swindlers and scam artists. Learn more about investing wisely and avoiding fraud.
Phony job opportunities, postal job scams, bogus work-at-home schemes, and fake charities are among the many types of postal fraud when they use the mail. Learn more about mail fraud schemes.
Has your business ever been targeted by an office supply scam? Could it? Office supply fraud costs its victims — large and small businesses, as well as schools, government agencies, and nonprofit institutions — an estimated $200 million per year. These scams generally involve the deceptive sale of products that businesses purchase on a regular basis — like printer paper, copy toner, light bulbs or cleaning materials. Learn more about office supply scams.
Do you receive lots of junk email messages from people you don't know? It's no surprise if you do. As more people use email, marketers are increasingly using email messages to pitch their products and services. Some consumers find unsolicited commercial email - also known as "spam" – annoying and time consuming; others have lost money to bogus offers that arrived in their email in-box. Learn more about spam e-mail.