The Federal Trade Commission receives about 300,000 samples of deceptive spam – forwarded by computer users – each day, and stores it in a database. The FTC and its law enforcement partners use the database to generate cases against people who use spam to spread false or misleading information about their products or services. To better handle the high volume of spam forwarded to the database, the FTC recently opened a new email box – SPAM@UCE.GOV. The old email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) will be phased out.
The FTC’s spam database has served as the basis for FTC cases involving pyramid schemes, money-making chain letters, credit card scams, credit repair scams, bogus weight-loss plans, fraudulent business opportunities, and other scams that were promoted via email.
Consumers who wish to forward unwanted or deceptive spam to the FTC should use the email@example.com address. Whenever you complain about spam, it's important to include the full email header.
Consumers who think they have been taken advantage of by a spam scam can file a complaint with the FTC online at www.ftc.gov. Complaints will help the FTC find and stop people who are using
spam to defraud consumers.
To learn more about how to avoid spam scams and reduce the clutter in your in-box, check out www.ftc.gov/spam.
Copies of the consumer publications about reducing spam are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish (bilingual counselors are available to take complaints), or to get free information on any of 150 consumer topics, call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357), or use the complaint form at http://www.ftc.gov. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.