FTC Releases Top Ten List of Consumer Complaints for 2011
(3/6/12) For the 12th
year in the row, identity theft is the number 1 consumer complaint, according to information released last week by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC
Of more than 1.8 million complaints filed in 2011, roughly 15% were related to identity theft. Nearly one-quarter of those were tax- or wage-related fraud. The top 10 complaints:
Identity theft (15%);
Debt collection (10%);
Prizes, sweepstakes, lotteries (6%);
Shop-at-home, catalog sales (5%);
Banks and lenders (5%);
Internet services (5%);
Auto-related complaints (4%);
Imposter scams (4%);
Telephone and mobile services (4%); and
Advance-fee loans and credit protection/repair (3%).
Consumers reported paying more than $1.5 billion for fraudulent schemes. The median amount paid to fraudsters was $537. And a whopping 43% of victims said they were targeted by e-mail.
To file a consumer complaint in English or Spanish, use the FTC's Complaint Assistant
Also from that website, members of the U.S. armed forces can file complaints with Consumer Sentinel Military
, which helps identify and target consumer protection issues affecting service members and their families. And econsumer.gov
allows you to file complaints against an entity in another country.
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