In a recent press release, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the government agency that works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them, reported that for that for the 11th year in a row, identity theft was the number one consumer complaint category. Of 1,339,265 complaints received in 2010, 250,854 – or 19 percent – were related to identity theft. Debt collection complaints were in second place, with 144,159 complaints. Making a first time appearance in the top 10 is “Imposter scams” – where imposters posed as friends, family, respected companies or government agencies to get consumers to send them money. Along those lines, the FTC also has issued a new consumer alert, “Spotting an Imposter”, to help consumers avoid imposter scams.
The 2010 Top Ten List:
|Rank||Category||Number of Complaints||Percentage|
|4||Prizes, Sweepstakes and Lotteries||64,085||5%|
|5||Shop-at-Home and Catalog Sales||60,205||4%|
|8||Foreign Money/Counterfeit Check Scams||43,866||3%|
|9||Telephone and Mobile Services||37,388||3%|
To file a complaint go to Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357).
More information on identity theft prevention is available at www.hvshred.com