FTC Blogs

Tidying up: Decluttering the COPPA FAQs

Maybe it’s the influence of that best-selling book on home organization or perhaps the silos of stuff in our makeshift home offices are becoming more noticeable. Either way, people are in a decluttering mood – and we are, too. Our recent project: updating and streamlining Complying with COPPA: Frequently Asked Questions, known as the COPPA FAQs. But not to worry. The revisions don’t raise new policy issues and our COPPA Rule review continues.

Avoiding a money mule scam

Scammers are looking for people to help them move stolen money. They visit dating, job search, and other sites, telling fake stories, and making up reasons to send you money. Then they tell you to send the money to someone else. If you help a scammer move stolen money — even if you didn’t know it was stolen — you could get into legal trouble.

How small businesses can up the impact of their charitable donations

As the holidays – and the end of the tax year – draw near, people are likely to approach small business owners with requests for charitable contributions. But scammers are hard at work with their own holiday rush. To protect your business from fraud and to amplify the impact of your donations on the charities that matter to you, these simple steps can help ensure that Giving Tuesday isn’t followed by Regretful Wednesday.

The clock is ticking for open enrollment at Medicare.gov and Healthcare.gov

The Medicare Open Enrollment deadline of December 7, 2021 is fast approaching. If you’re on Medicare, now is the time to review your health and prescription drug coverage and compare it with other plans to make sure you have a plan that best meets your needs for 2022. Coverage changes take effect January 1, 2022. Open enrollment for 2022 health plans in the Healthcare Marketplace continues through January 15, 2022, but if you want your coverage to start January 1, 2022, you need to enroll by December 15, 2021. If you enroll between December 16, 2021 and January 15, 2022, your coverage will start on February 1, 2022.

Looking for a new job? Watch out for scams

As we wrap up National Caregiver Month, the FTC wants to recognize all the incredible work that caregivers like you do every day. The work is seen and unseen and helps people in both physical and emotional ways. We know caregiving can be tough on your finances, too. So if you’re looking for a way to make extra money, searching online can be a good start. But scammers are there, too, and post fake job ads designed to trick you into sharing personal information or sending money in exchange for the promise of a job…that doesn’t exist.

How to spot and avoid common health scams

As a caregiver for a family member with special health needs, you know that shopping, making meals, or just regularly spending time with someone who can’t get out much can profoundly improve their quality of life. But being a caregiver is stressful, and scammers know that, too. In fact, dishonest companies will say almost anything to get you to buy their product or service.

FTC analysis shows COVID fraud thriving on social media platforms

With more than a century of consumer protection experience under our belt, we at the FTC know that hard times for American families can be boom times for scammers. Today’s COVID-19 pandemic is the latest crisis creating fertile ground for fraud – and scammers today have a new and powerful weapon: social media platforms. These platforms generally earn their revenue by targeting users with advertising. The more time we spend on platforms consuming content and revealing valuable personal information, the more that platforms profit by having information to target ads.

Unsubstantiated COVID-19 treatment claims appear on social media platforms

Social media platforms have played a major role in conveying information about how to help stop the spread of COVID-19. But just because the information is running on a platform you use doesn’t mean it’s accurate or truthful. Before you act on a message you’ve seen or before you share it, ask — and answer — these critical questions.