Yesterday, the Federal Trade Commission released a statistical survey of fraud in America, and the figures are astonishing. The FTC report survey shows that 30.2 million adults, approximately 13.5 percent of the adult population have been victims of fraud so far this year.The main avenue for consumer fraud entailed deceptive weight-loss products, ensnaring about 4.8 million consumers. The consumers report two other methods involving fraudulent buyers club memberships and foreign lottery offers.The lottery scamsters enticed victims into giving out their personal bank account information by telling them that they had won a foreign lottery. Of course, the bank account information was needed to “transfer the winnings.” In the case of consumer scam involving buyers clubs, victims were sold “memberships” they had not purchased.The FTC consumer report shows consumer scams of several hues. The top ten consumer fraud on the FTC consumer reports*:1. “Fraudulent Weight-Loss Products (4.8 million victims)2. Foreign Lottery Scams (3.2 million victims)3. Unauthorized Billing – Buyers Clubs (3.2 million victims)4. Prize Promotions (2.7 million victims)5. Work-at-Home Programs (2.4 million victims)6. Credit Card Insurance (2.1 million victims)7. Unauthorized Billing – Internet Services (1.8 million victims)8. Advance-Fee Loans (1.7 million victims)9. Credit Repair Scams (1.2 million victims)10. Business Opportunities (.8 million victims)”The consumer affairs in regards to fraud are mainly handled by the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection. The bureau’s mission is to protect consumers against unfair, misleading, fraudulent or deceptive practices. The Bureau addresses consumer complaints, protects consumer rights, develops rules for consumer protections, conducts investigations, enforces consumer protection laws, sues people and businesses who violate the law, and educates businesses and consumers about their fundamental duties and rights [http://www.gimmiethescoop.com/index.php/news-politics/democracy-now-fundamental-duties-of-a-citizen-part-1]The FTC is a consumer protection agency that not only offers consumer fraud protection but also shares and collects consumer fraud and identity theft information making them available to law enforcement agencies across the country.The consumer report found fraud cut across age, race, and education demographics. Young consumers between 35 and 44 were thirty-two percent more likely to be ensnared than consumers between 65 and 74 years of age. African American were 22 percent of the victims, Hispanics 18 percent, and Whites 12 percent. Furthermore, college educated consumers were less likely to be defrauded than consumers without a college degree*.The main avenues of fraudulent advertising as reported by consumers were*:• Print advertising, direct mail, includes catalogs, magazine and newspaper and advertising, and flyers and posters – 27%• Internet, includes Web sites, e-mail, and auction sites – 22%• Radio or television – 21%• Telemarketing – 9%• Others – 21%If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. You must be constantly vigilant against offers or promotions that provide quick fixes, easy money, instant remedies to various ills, and income without effort. Remember, anything in life worth doing is going to be difficult, requiring you to challenge yourself. I live by this creed, if you imbibe it as well, you are less likely to deceive yourself and be deceived by others in life.*Source: Federal Trade Commission Consumer Fraud Survey 2007
Whenever you buy a car, you know the importance of research. Proper information gathering procedures can help you make an informed decision on the car you wish to buy. You want to do everything possible to prevent yourself from spending your hard-earned dollars on a lemon of an automobile. This is why there are tons of sources available for you to use to get the info you need. For example, you can just ask someone for information. Lots of people consult consumer reports to get what they are looking for.Any consumer report can give you a whole bunch of information that you can use to make a smart car buy. A good consumer report can give you information on safety, handling and other car information. Unless you are an automotive expert, or have the capacity to test out a wide range of vehicles that you are interested in buying, free consumer reports are your best bet to get the unfiltered and precise information that you need to have.A valid consumer report should be generated by a trusted source. Customers may write a consumer report on the very car that you want to buy. This is of prime benefit because it gives you your own personal perspective on the car and its attributes. You can easily understand and follow a consumer report written by a fellow consumer. Simple information is key when it comes to understanding a consumer report.There are experts who write consumer reports. These are people who understand detailed aspects of the car that you’re interested in. They are able to break down the pros and cons of the car in great length and present the information in an easy to read consumer report.The right vehicular consumer report can save you a ton of time, money and frustration. Smart shoppers read consumer reports before they buy a car.