Saluting army soldier on american flag background
Military veterans are frequently targeted by fraudsters, but perhaps the most insidious are self-described “veterans advocates” who take aim at retirement nest eggs.
Yield sign with scam alert written on it. Photog: AmanaLang http://www.istockphoto.com/profile/amanalang
Burned once in a scam? Then brace yourself for a repeat rip-off attempt that starts with a promise of help in recovering your initial losses.
Looking up free credit score
“Free credit scores” are effective bait. Just ask any of the 200,000 consumers who complained to the Federal Trade Commission about one recent online scheme that lured them with “free” access to their credit scores … then snagged them with a common switch: billing $30 a month for credit monitoring services they never ordered.
Mosquito biting victim
With the start of the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and peak mosquito season in much of the U.S., expect even more news about the Zika virus — ideal timing for frenzy-feeding fraudsters peddling scams such as:
Student loan graphic of graduation cap on hundred dollar bills
College students and others who have student loans are the latest target of IRS impersonators. In this iteration of the ongoing, widespread scam, fraudsters threaten arrest and other penalties unless a nonexistent “federal student tax” is paid immediately.
Man shredding confidential documents
April showers? With spring cleaning and the end of tax-filing season, what really “reigns” this month are free shredding events held across the country — including dozens hosted by our Fraud Watch Network and AARP Foundation — to safely destroy unneeded paperwork that could help crooks steal your identity.
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It’s bad enough being scammed out of your money once. But some older consumers are being conned a second time by so-called asset recovery companies promising to help recover the money lost in the initial fraud, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) warns.
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Identity theft has become so prevalent that some regulators say it’s not a matter of if you’ll become a victim, but when.
Man in suit holding 'We are here to help' sign
After seven long years, the tech support scam continues as a reigning rip-off, generating more reports nationwide to the AARP Fraud Watch Network Helpline (877-908-3360) than any scheme except the IRS impostor ruse. Microsoft estimates that another 3.3 million Americans will fall victim in 2015, losing an estimated $1.5 billion to fraudsters posing as its or other tech company employees.
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The payment methods most favored by con artists because they are hard to trace — and which make it difficult for consumers to recover their money — will be prohibited for all telemarketers, thanks to new requirements by the Federal Trade Commission aimed at curbing financial losses suffered by scam victims.
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