No; this isn’t an action movie. But new enhancements to econsumer.gov — and a new interactive international dashboard for Consumer Sentinel reports — give the FTC, other government agencies, and people across the globe scam-fighting powers that rival those of an action hero. Econsumer.gov is a site created in 2001 by members of the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network (ICPEN), to gather and share consumer complaints about international scams. The FTC leads the econsumer.gov project.
One of the new interactive dashboards is based on econsumer.gov reports. It identifies the world’s top fraud locations, as well as reported financial losses from this fraud. The second set of dashboards tracks international reports submitted to the Consumer Sentinel Network. These include reports filed by foreign consumers against U.S.-based companies, and reports filed by U.S. consumers against foreign companies, with data grouped by geographic region.
Here’s just a sample of what we found: In 2019, econsumer.gov had 40,432 reports of international scams, with reported losses exceeding $151 million. Beyond the United States, most reports came from France, India, Australia, the United Kingdom, and Canada. Online shopping scams topped the list of reports.
Also in 2019, the Consumer Sentinel database revealed that 91,560 people reported losing more than $276.5 million to scams based outside the U.S. When you look at reports against companies outside the U.S., the top five categories were online shopping, tech support scams, romance scams, advance fee loans/credit arrangers, and prizes/sweepstakes/lotteries. Outside the U.S., companies based in Canada saw the most consumer complaints, followed by companies in China, India, the United Kingdom, and Germany.
It’s reassuring to know there is practically no place in the world where scammers and dishonest businesses can’t be called out. But these tools are only as powerful as the information people worldwide put into them. Wherever you are on the planet, you can tell us about the scams you experience. If your report is about a U.S. company, go to ftc.gov/complaint. And if you’re telling us about a company in another country, file your report at econsumer.gov.
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.
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- 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.
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In reply to This all sounds good but what by DebbieH
The information people give in their complaints goes into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations. Those investigations can be used to bring cases that result in refunds and other help for scam victims. The FTC has a list of recent cases resulting in refunds.
In reply to Those systems are not by SAMCO
You do not need to give your name when you report. You do not need to give the name of the scammer when you report. You can choose what information you will give. You can help law enforcement by sharing some details of a scam. Report a problem at www.econsumer.gov.
In reply to +1850-631-4230 , by Victim of Ande…
You can report to www.FTC.gov/Complaint. The information you give will go into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations.