Microsoft Pays YouTube Users A Pittance To Promote Xbox One & Not Say Anything Bad About It

Microsoft Pays YouTube Users A Pittance To Promote Xbox One & Not Say Anything Bad About It

Dear Microsoft: If you’re going to ask YouTube video bloggers to sell out and shill for your Xbox One console, at least open up your wallet and spend some real money. Is all the negative publicity — and potential regulatory hassle — that’s destined to come of it worth a mere $3,750? [More]

FTC Collects $3.5 Million From TeleCheck For Failing To Investigate Disputes Or Correct Errors

FTC Collects $3.5 Million From TeleCheck For Failing To Investigate Disputes Or Correct Errors

One of the nation’s largest check authorization service companies is going to be cutting a rather large check to settle charges made by the Federal Trade Commission. [More]

Apple To Refund At Least $32.5 Million For In-App Purchases By Kids

Apple To Refund At Least $32.5 Million For In-App Purchases By Kids

Though Apple has already settled a class-action lawsuit over all those in-app purchases unwittingly made by free-fingered kids on their parents’ and other adults’ iPhones and iPads, that deal didn’t mean the folks at the Federal Trade Commission were going to stop looking into the situation. Today, the FTC announced that it has reached a deal with the electronics giant to issue at least another $32.5 million in refunds to consumers. [More]

(Lenka Reznicek)

Medical Alert Device Robocalls Scammed $13 Million From Elderly

Unwanted robocalls are bad enough. But there’s a special place (not a good place, either) for companies that use robocalls to scam the elderly out of their savings. One Orlando-based operation, accused of scamming $13 million from senior citizens, now has a confirmed reservation in that special place. [More]

Say It Isn’t So: Nine Dealerships Cop To Deceptive Advertising

Say It Isn’t So: Nine Dealerships Cop To Deceptive Advertising

You can’t always believe what you see. Especially when it comes to car advertisements. Those ads promising low financing and easy monthly payments are probably too good to be true. [More]

FTC Settles Charges Of Deceptive Advertising Against Four Weight-Loss Marketers For $34M

FTC Settles Charges Of Deceptive Advertising Against Four Weight-Loss Marketers For $34M

Put down that shaker of Sensa. Those promises of shedding 30 pounds while eating french fries and sitting on the couch aren’t real. We know — who would have thunk it? Well, the Federal Trade Commission for starters, which announced today that four marketers of fad weight loss products settled FTC charges on deceptive advertising for $34 million. [More]

That Guy On The Phone Offering A Tech Support Refund Is Probably A Scammer

That Guy On The Phone Offering A Tech Support Refund Is Probably A Scammer

We’ve written before about scam artists taking advantage of consumers’ unease with technology to trick them into handing over sensitive personal info, and now there are scammers hoping to prey upon consumers’ general dissatisfaction with customer service and tech support (and their general love of refunds). [More]

Double-Dipping Resale Scammers Targeted Spanish Speakers With Fake Designer Goods

Double-Dipping Resale Scammers Targeted Spanish Speakers With Fake Designer Goods

At the urging of the FTC, a court in California has shut down a telemarketing racket that has a little bit of everything: resale scams, fake designer goods, and illegal legal threats. It’s a scam trifecta! [More]

(backgroundgeo)

Data Miners Collect More Of Your Information Every Day; Good Luck Finding Out What They Know

Every time you use the internet, you leave a huge trail of information in your wake–and it’s not just your browser history full of cat videos.  Companies called data brokers are constantly collecting a thousand little nuggets of information behind you, adding them up into a profile of you, and selling the profiles for lots of money.  Data brokers still move in mysterious ways, leaving unanswered questions: how are they getting their data?  Who’s buying it?  And, perhaps most importantly: can you, the consumer, do anything about it? [More]

How American Must A Product Be To Be Labeled “Made In The USA”?

How American Must A Product Be To Be Labeled “Made In The USA”?

As you finish up your holiday shopping this year, you might be feeling the desire to buy American-made products. Any number of things claim to be made in the USA, but that label itself is not an absolute guarantee that what you’re buying was indeed produced stateside. [More]

Maker Of Wildly Popular Flashlight App Failed To Tell Users It Was Sharing Their Location Info

Maker Of Wildly Popular Flashlight App Failed To Tell Users It Was Sharing Their Location Info

Most of us have had the bright idea to use our smartphones as flashlights when searching underneath the couch or in the backseat of a dark car. And many millions of people have downloaded flashlight apps that maximize the light coming out of their devices. Most of those people probably never even considered that a flashlight app would be doing anything other than turning on the phone’s lights, and certainly not transmitting location data to third parties. [More]

How To Not Suck… At Disputing Credit Report Errors

How To Not Suck… At Disputing Credit Report Errors

Like it or hate it, your credit report and credit score have lots of power. These may determine whether or not you’re approved for a mortgage, car loan, or other borrowing, and will determine the interest rates on your credit cards. This information is often even used when you’re evaluated for an apartment, insurance or a job, or try to get a bank account. That’s why it’s incredibly important to check your credit report for errors, as mistakes on your report can haunt every part of your financial life for years. [More]

TV Pitchman Kevin Trudeau Found Guilty Of Making Misleading Weight-Loss Claims In Infomercials

TV Pitchman Kevin Trudeau Found Guilty Of Making Misleading Weight-Loss Claims In Infomercials

We’ve been following the saga of former bestselling weight loss guru and TV pitchman Kevin Trudeau for about six years, since he was found in contempt of court for violating a 2004 FTC settlement banning him from misrepresenting the content of his books. The Trudeau tale is nearing a final chapter now that he faces possible jail time after being found guilty of criminal contempt for misleading statements in his infomercials. [More]

Aaron’s Agrees To Stop Snooping On Customers Via Rented Computers

Aaron’s Agrees To Stop Snooping On Customers Via Rented Computers

In Sept. 2012, Aaron’s was one of several rent-to-own retailers caught using software to illegally snoop on customers who rented computers. Yesterday, the Federal Trade Commission announced that Aaron’s has agreed to settle these charges and make sure franchisees cease the spying. [More]

(KGW-TV)

No, Comcast Will Not Threaten To Arrest You If You Don’t Pay Your Bill

So you’ve received an e-mail from Comcast saying you’re $25 late on your cable bill and that if you don’t resolve the issue ASAP, you could be arrested. First, that’s simply not true, and second, that message isn’t from Comcast. [More]

(afagen)

So The Government Is Shut Down… Do I Still Have To Pay My Taxes?

As the sun rises over Washington, D.C., this morning, huge numbers of federal employees are either not coming in to work or are only coming in to shut down their offices until lawmakers sort this mess out. But just because the wheels of government have come grinding to a halt doesn’t mean everything is put on hold indefinitely. [More]

Dear Debt Collectors: Using This Envelope Will Only Get You In Trouble With The FTC

We hope the FTC uses this envelope to send a bill for the $1 billion settlement to these debt collectors.

Remember that rundown of debt-collection practices that violate federal law? Here’s one to add to the list: When sending debt collection notices to consumers, don’t use an envelope that depicts a man being turned upside-down and having his pockets emptied. [More]

(matt coats)

No, You Did Not Just Win $2 Million: FTC Sues To Stop Scammy Sweepstakes Letters

“OH MY GOD, MOM! YOU WON $2 MILLION!” I may or may not have screamed at my mother at some point in my youth, while brandishing an envelope with that very same claim emblazoned across it. But my mother didn’t join in celebration, because she like, everyone else who gets those letters, didn’t win a dime. The Federal Trade Commission has now sued to stop what it calls a massive sweepstakes scam responsible for bilking more than $11 million from people in the U.S. and around the world. [More]