Every day, people across the country are telling the FTC what happened to them. Maybe they lost money to a scam, lost their identity, or just spotted something that looked fishy and wanted somebody to know. All of that information helps FTC and other law enforcement agencies investigate and bring cases against scammers. And, every year, we roll up all that data and give it back to you in an annual data book. Now, though, you don’t have to wait a year to find out what’s happening.
Starting today, the FTC is making that Consumer Sentinel data available to you every quarter. If you visit ftc.gov/data, you’ll find an interactive online tool that lets you find things like:
- What scams are people reporting in your state, and how much money are people losing?
- What are the top states reporting, say, prizes and sweepstakes fraud? Or other frauds?
- What’s changed over time, from 2014 to now?
- What are military consumers reporting?
- How much money have older or younger people reported losing to fraud?
- How are identity thieves misusing people’s information?
This new quarterly resource might especially interest you if you’re an academic, into research, in the media, or just really interested in consumer protection – or what’s happening with scams near you. Knowing about scams helps you avoid them, so play with the data, download it you want to do more analysis, and print it if you want to share it.
We’ll also be releasing periodic Data Spotlights on trends or hot topics we’ve spotted in the data – like the one released earlier today. If you spot something in the data that you find interesting, please leave it in the comments.
The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.
- We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
- We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
- We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
- We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.
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If you lose money to a fraud, you can report the problem to law enforcement, but you can't always get your money back.
You can report to the FTC at www.FTC.gov/Complaint. The information you give goes into a secure database that law enforcement agencies across the country use for investigations and to bring cases.
You can report to the Attorney General that protects people in your state. Look for your Attorney General's office information online.
If you found the ad for the work at home company on a website, you can make a complaint to the website. If you sent payment through a wire transfer, tell the wire transfer company. Call the Western Union Fraud Hotline at 800-448-1492 or the MoneyGram Customer Care Center at 1-800-926-9400.
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