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The Federal Trade Commission took action against payment processing company First American Payment Systems and two of its sales affiliates for targeting small- and medium-sized businesses. The FTC alleges that the defendants made false claims about fees and cost savings to lure merchants, many of whom had limited English proficiency. Once merchants were enrolled, the defendants withdrew funds from their accounts without their consent, and made it difficult and expensive for them to cancel the service. Under a proposed federal court order, the defendants will be required to return $4.9 million to harmed businesses, stop their deception, and make it easier for merchants to cancel their services.
Dissenting Statement of Commissioners Noah Joshua Phillips and Christine S. Wilson Regarding the Issuance of Two Omnibus Compulsory Process Resolutions
The FTC sued VoIP service provider VoIP Terminator, Inc., a related company, and the firms’ owner for assisting and facilitating the transmission of millions of illegal prerecorded telemarketing robocalls, including those they knew or should have known were scams, to consumers nationwide. Many of the calls originated overseas, and related to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the defendants allegedly failing to act as a gatekeeper to stop them from entering the country. The proposed consent order bars the defendants from the allegedly illegal conduct.
Federal Court Rules in Favor of FTC, Halting Illegal Tactics Used to Promote Smoking Cessation, Weight-Loss, and Sexual-Performance Aids
The FTC’s October 2018 complaint against Redwood Scientific charged the defendants with a scheme that used illegal robocalls to deceptively market dissolvable oral film strips as effective smoking cessation, weight-loss, and sexual-performance aids. Announced in June 2019 as part of a crackdown on illegal robocalls against operations around the country responsible for more than one billion calls, an initial settlement resolved the FTC’s charges against one defendant in the Redwood Scientific case, Danielle Cadiz. The order permanently banned Cadiz from all robocall activities, including ringless voicemails, and imposes a judgment of $18.2 million against Cadiz. In March 2022, the FTC announced the final court orders against all remaining defendants.
Operators of Credit Card Interest Rate Reduction Scam Permanently Banned from Debt Relief Business Under Settlement with the FTC and Florida Attorney General
FTC to VoIP Providers: Turn over Information for Robocall Investigations or Prepare to be Sued in Federal Court
Announced in June 2019 as part of a crackdown on illegal robocalls against operations around the country responsible for more than one billion calls, this court order contains provisions related to two sets of defendants: 1) the Lifewatch defendants, which includes Lifewatch, Inc., Evan Sirlin, and Mitchel May; and 2) the Roman defendants, which includes Safe Home Security, MedGuard Alert, Inc., and David Roman. The order permanently bans the Lifewatch defendants from telemarketing and prohibits them from misrepresenting the terms associated with the sale of any product or service. It also imposes a financial judgment of $25.3 million against Lifewatch and Sirlin. According to the FTC’s July 2015 complaint, filed jointly with the Florida Attorney General’s Office, since 2012 the defendants bombarded primarily elderly consumers with at least a billion unsolicited robocalls to pitch supposedly “free” medical alert systems. In December 2021, the FTC announce it was returning more than $1.8 million to defrauded consumers.
FTC Releases 2021 Do Not Call Registry Data Book; Reports Registrations and Consumer Complaints Both Increased in FY 2021
Announced in June 2019 as part of a crackdown on illegal robocalls against operations around the country responsible for more than one billion calls, thisFTC complaint against five corporate and four individual defendants<, alleges that since at least 2017 the defendants have used a combination of illegal telemarketing robocalls, live telephone calls, text messaging, internet ads, emails, social media, and live events to market and sell consumers fraudulent money-making opportunities. The complaint charges the defendants, who operate from California, Colorado, New York, and Tennessee, with violating the FTC Act, the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR), or both, by making deceptive earnings claims through robocalls and other marketing techniques. In September 2021, The Federal Trade Commission sent checks totaling more than $1 million to consumers who were harmed by the company.
FTC Testifies before the Senate Special Committee on Aging About the Agency’s Work to Halt Practices that Prey on Older Americans
FTC Sends Nearly $30 Million in Refunds to People Tricked into Enrolling by School Operator’s Lead Generators
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