An estimated 30.2 million Americans were victims of fraud last year, which is about 13.5% of the adult population, according to the just released results of the 2005 FTC Consumer Fraud Survey. (Yes, it takes them two years to get the results out the door).
10. Business Opportunities: .8 mil
9. Credit Repair Scams: 1.2 mil
8. Advance-Fee Loans: 1.7 mil
7. Unauthorized Billing – Internet Services: 1.8 mil
6. Credit Card Insurance: 2.1 mil
5. Work-at-Home Programs: 2.4 mil
4. Prize Promotions: 2.7 mil
3. Unauthorized Billing: Buyers Clubs 3.2 mil
2. Foreign Lottery Scams: 3.2 mil
1. Fraudulent Weight-Loss Products: 4.8 mil
To protect yourself, the FTC advises only dealing with reputable companies, reading the small print, resisting the urge to “act now,” protecting your personal info, never paying a dime for stuff touted as “free,” and reporting fraud at FTC.gov.