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May 2018

May 23, 2018

Imagine getting a prerecorded robocall claiming to be from a “data service provider for Google” giving you “final notice” that “If you do not act soon, Google will label your business as permanently closed.” Second only to a fire alarm going off, that constitutes an ASAP emergency for many small...

May 22, 2018

You can say this about scammers: They tend toward the trendy. As new products and services enter the marketplace, it’s not long before fraudsters find a way to exploit consumer interest in the innovation to make a quick buck. Cryptocurrencies are no exception, which is why the FTC is hosting a...

May 8, 2018

On April 27, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit dismissed a challenge to a November 2016 FTC staff letter addressing certain prerecorded calls or “robocalls” using soundboard...

May 3, 2018

Mosquitoes don’t just bug us. A big concern is their penchant for passing along pernicious diseases, including the Zika virus. New Jersey-based Aromaflage claimed its sprays and candles were effective at repelling mosquitoes – including ones that spread serious illnesses – and repelled...

May 2, 2018

Why are you mumbling?
The TV is not too loud!
What did you say? This restaurant is like Grand Central Station.

For millions of Americans, an unwelcome “I’m turning into my parents” milestone is noticing that conversations aren’t as clear as they used to be....

May 1, 2018

Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words. According to warning letters from the FDA and FTC, certain sellers of e-liquids – flavorings for e-cigarettes –...

April 2018

Apr 30, 2018

Keep a watchful eye on your service providers. For conscientious companies, that’s Privacy & Data Security 101. It’s also a key compliance tip from the FTC’s proposed...

Apr 27, 2018

Remember that public service announcement: “It’s 8:00. Do you know where your children are?” Technology has given parents tools for answering that question. But under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule, online services touted as ways to keep kids connected need to comply with key...

Apr 25, 2018

It’s a given that companies shouldn’t charge consumers hidden fees. But it raises a particular concern when an online lender makes “No Hidden Fees” claims a centerpiece of its marketing – and then deducts from those loans hundreds or even thousands of dollars in hidden up-front fees.

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Apr 13, 2018

Last year, we heard from small business owners about their cybersecurity challenges at a series of roundtable discussions the FTC hosted with some of its partners. What we learned is that...

Apr 12, 2018

In its August 2017 proposed consent agreement with Uber, the FTC alleged, among other things, that the company’s unreasonable security practices resulted in a May 2014 data breach. But there’s more to the story now. According to the FTC, Uber experienced another breach in the fall of 2016 –...

Apr 10, 2018

No matter what you call it – facts and figures, the boxscore, or a report from the stat-o-sphere – a recap is a great way to get the lay of the land. Which brings me to the FTC’s Annual Highlights, a short but...

Apr 10, 2018

When the screen goes blue
And the car breaks down
And the smartphone keeps rebooting eternally
Consumers won
t be afraid
No, they won
t be afraid
Just as long as you stand by your warranty.

With apologies to R&B legend Ben E. King,...

Apr 3, 2018

If you’re a tax professional, business owner, or in a human resources department, the FTC and IRS can help you help clients, employees, or other people who discover they’re victims of tax-related identity theft....

March 2018

Mar 26, 2018

Here’s the thing about nectar. It can be sweet, but sticky. People who paid Palo Alto-based Nectar Brand LLC for mattresses labeled “Designed and Assembled in the USA” thought they were getting a sweet deal. In fact, buyers were stuck with mattresses imported from China, already completed. The...

Mar 23, 2018

An FTC lawsuit alleges that money-making claims made by a related group of companies and individuals for their Amazing Wealth System are “amazing” all right – if by “...

Mar 8, 2018

When the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection started the Business Blog in 2010, we promised readers “a minimum of ho-hum, a maximum of how-to, and as little yadda yadda yadda as a legal website can manage.” More than 1,000 Business Blog posts later and we’re still striving to keep things...

Mar 7, 2018

Medical professionals, consumer advocates, industry members, and law enforcers are gathering in Washington right now in anticipation of today’s workshop, The Contact Lens Rule...

Mar 5, 2018

Every business wants to forge an ongoing relationship with their customers. That principle takes on special significance for mobile device manufacturers when they need to issue security patches for the operating system software on their phones and tablets. Once devices are in consumers’ hands,...

Mar 1, 2018

Once bitten, twice shy. That fundamental principle of human behavior is why reputable businesses that work hard to earn consumers’ confidence should support the FTC’s ongoing efforts to fight fraud. According to the...

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