Weight Loss Tops The Scales On FTC Top 10 Fraud List

The Federal Trade Commission released a report today which applies some figures to the scams and frauds which American’s fell victim to most often in 2005 –

  • Fraudulent Weight-Loss Products (4.8 million victims)
  • Foreign Lottery Scams (3.2 million victims)
  • Unauthorized Billing – Buyers Clubs (3.2 million victims)
  • Prize Promotions (2.7 million victims)
  • Work-at-Home Programs (2.4 million victims)
  • Credit Card Insurance (2.1 million victims)
  • Unauthorized Billing – Internet Services (1.8 million victims)
  • Advance-Fee Loans (1.7 million victims)
  • Credit Repair Scams (1.2 million victims)
  • Business Opportunities (0.8 million victims)

The report then goes on to offer some advice to the 30.2 million victims (13.5% of the adult population). Though basic, their suggestions include –

  • Know who you’re dealing with: Do business only with companies that plainly provide their name, street address, and phone number
  • Take your time: Resist the urge to act now. Most any offer that’s good today will be good tomorrow, too.
  • Free means free: Throw out any offer that says you have to pay to get a gift or for something that’s called “free.” If something is free or a gift, you shouldn’t have to pay for it.

Of course, you could always find more detailed advice about scams and fraud here

About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.

Comments

  1. Those are some pretty busy girls (if so) :shock:

    I am sure that it does, which leaves me with mixed feelings.

    I think most MLM’s are/can be shady.
    I personally don’t think I could ever do anything with an MLM except be scammed by it :sad:

    However, seeing first hand the success that my wife is enjoying with Mary Kay WITHOUT being sneaky, shady or dishonest in any way, it makes me sad that her experience is generally lumped into the same category as all MLM’s. :mad:

    It is like some version of prejudice. I myself am guilty of it. I almost never give people with an MLM presentation even the time of day. I know they are not ALL bad, but I just don’t want to hear it. It is an interesting catch 22 – eh?

    jb

    • Forgetting all the MLMs that are really pyramid schemes, or otherwise shady, I think your wife’s experience sums up the other such alternatives – a few people will have the skills to succeed whilst most will not.

  2. That is why I am here! “detailed advice about scams and fraud”

    Otherwise where would I have come up with the masterpiece offer of my Monavie, Osama-hunting, Ron Paul supporting, Ocean View Cave Dwelling, meteorite/star/moon ownership offer?

    By the way, although I am scared to actualy click on it, I wonder if the “I was scammed 37 times” guy was also trapped in the Home Depot scam?

    It seems like that scam is MOST effective at repeat business :oops:

    Nice to know that so many Americans are still gullible!

    I love that “business opportunities” is listed as a scam! I assume they mean fraudulent or misleading business opportunities. Most ‘real’ business opportunities are self-initiated. Imagine someone creating a business opportunity for themselves… say opening a clothing store featuring hot new trends. They fail and then cry “scam”!?!

    jb

  3. I’m wondering if all of us guys got trapped by the SAME girls at Home Depot :shock:

    I think ‘business opportunities’ refers to multi level marketing :twisted:

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