News From Our Blog

Participate in our National Consumer Protection Week Live Twitter Chat

We will host a National Consumer Protection Week Twitter chat on Wednesday, March 6 at 2 p.m. EST.

Experts from USA.gov, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will be on hand to answer your consumer-related questions and and provide government resources that can help. So whether you have questions about how to file a complaint with a company or how to learn about the latest scams, now is your chance to get answers.

You can submit your questions on Twitter (@USAgov) using the hashtag #NCPW from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EST next Wednesday, when experts will be available to answer them live. As always, you can also ask questions on our Facebook page or here on the blog.

National Consumer Protection Week runs from March 3-9 and encourages you to take full advantage of your consumer rights and make well-informed decisions in the marketplace.

What consumer questions do you have?

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau orders American Express to pay $85 million to consumers because of illegal practices. American Express will contact you if you’re owed money.

Top Consumer Complaints of 2011

What is the American consumer most upset about?

Identity theft. It accounted for 15 percent of the 1.8 million complaints registered with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in 2011.

Here’s the rest of top complaints FTC received in 2011:

  • Debt Collection Complaints
  • Prizes, Sweepstakes, and Lotteries
  • Shop-at-Home and Catalog Sales
  • Banks and Lenders
  • Internet Services
  • Auto-related Complaints
  • Impostor Scams
  • Telephone and Mobile Services
  • Advance-Fee Loans and Credit Protection/Repair

The data comes from complaints entered by Americans into the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant. The FTC shares the complaints with more than 2,000 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad, allowing them to track trends and target offenders.

Learn more about the FTC’s top complaints for 2011.

Download a PDF about what to do if your identity is stolen.

Green Guidelines for Consumers

On Twitter, @VJillAnnie asked us, “Could the Bureau of Consumer Protection assist w/ Transparency Strategies to Reduce Land Use Consumption 4 land owners?”

The Federal Trade Commission says land use is usually a matter for local groups. Clearly people are looking for accurate information about making choices that are good for the environment.

When companies make “green” claims, they need to back them up with solid science. The FTC is revising its Green Guides to help companies comply with the law and make sure you have access to accurate information. Find the latest at ftc.gov/green.

Order a FREE Consumer Action Handbook.