With heartbreaking images of the recent devastation in Houston, many consumers in the United States and around the world are reaching for their wallets to help. The inclination to send donations is generous and kind, but advocates know that con artists have long exploited natural disasters, and consumers must be careful in order to avoid sending money to scammers who pose as charities.
Earlier this November, NCL held a meeting with our Alliance Against Fraud coalition. We had presenters from the Federal Trade Commission (FCC) representing the government and AARP representing advocacy interests. If Frank Abagnale Jr. of Catch Me If You Can, and AARP's newest spokesperson, taught us anything, it’s that scammers know their targets and their sights are almost always set on the most vulnerable consumers. Scammers also work together by distributing “sucker lists” amongst themselves that keep victims at the mercy of scammers.
This week, the National Consumers League (NCL) joined forces with the Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies (ASOP Global), and the Center for Safe Internet Pharmacies (CSIP) in launching a campaign to educate seniors and their caregivers about the health and financial risks associated with buying prescription medicines from illegal or rogue online pharmacies.
Ever heard of a tech support scam? Well, a very smart, savvy member of my family fell victim to one this week.
NCL recently debuted the first issue of The #DataInsecurity Digest, a twice monthly publication curated by NCL's own, John Breyault, to deliver important consumer-focused data security news, policy and news analysis, and information about upcoming events directly to your inbox. Click here to subscribe.
In 2013, there were 614 data breaches that led to more than 550 million identities compromised. New data breaches means more identity theft and other fraud, and more consumers facing financial loss, great inconvenience, and a loss of trust in the marketplace. That is why NCL is working on the #DataInsecurity Project -- to raise awareness about the need for reforms aimed at better protecting consumer data.
Another day, another data breach. The data breach roulette wheel this times landed on health insurer CareFirst. Who loses? The 1.1 million consumers whose names, birth dates, email addresses and CareFirst subscriber ID numbers are now in the hands of cyber crooks.
Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Edith Ramirez this morning announced the next step in the FTC’s efforts to craft data security guidelines for businesses. As part of its “Start with Security” program, originally unveiled in March, the Commission will hold an initiative at the University of California on September 9. This follows on the heels of the February 13 Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection at Stanford University.
Bringing a new puppy or kitten home is right at the top of many consumers’ wish lists. Unfortunately, scammers know all too well how emotionally connected we can get to idea of adopting a cuddly ball of fuzz. Since the beginning of 2015, NCL's Fraud.org has received a surge of consumer complaints about pet adoption scams. Learn how the scam works.
Think you've found your Romeo or Juliet online? Experts are warning, especially this time of year, to be on the lookout for predators posing as the perfect sweetheart. These Romance Scams can be a long, drawn-out process--it takes a long time to kindle a relationship in which the victim might actually consider sending cash. We've heard from countless victims who were more than just unlucky in love. Read on to hear their stories.
With the holidays upon us, many consumers will soon be unwrapping new laptops, tablets, and desktop computers. Out of the box, these new devices run great, but over time they can become clogged with all manner of scammy software. At best, these programs can degrade performance. At worst, they can lock down your new device and steal personal information.