From debt collection, to predatory lending and sales, no industry is safe from the hands of criminals trying to make an easy dollar. With so many consumers falling victim to scammers each year the focus has become dual fold: catch the criminals behind the scams and educate consumers on how to spot a scam before falling prey. Here are a list of the top 4 money related scams of 2013:
Collection agencies — while many debt collection agencies are legitimately trying to collect a debt by practicing fair procedures, there are plenty in operation that are abusing consumers and misrepresenting themselves altogether. Consumers are urged to read the guidelines of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and always be sure to a) verify the debt with the creditor directly, b) not give out personal information, and c) refrain from paying third party collectors.
No Call lists — many marketing companies have been found to be violating the rules of the No Call list subscription by continuing to contact consumers. Some consumers have even had their information sold off the No Call list to other sales or marketing companies. Consumers are urged to keep a record of when they placed their name on the No Call list, and avoid engaging in any discussions from unwanted calls by a marketer.
Cell phone contracts — cell phone contracts have loosened up in years after much back lash was received over stingy contractual terms. However, there is always some fine print behind any contract. If the contract seems too good to be true, it probably is. Consumers are encouraged to read any new cell phone contract carefully, making sure there are no hidden fees or unknown penalty fines for early termination. Bottom line is: know what you are getting yourself into.
Internet sales — with retail turning more to the online shopping experience the door becomes more open for financial information to become vulnerable. After the holiday breach of millions of credit cards and bank cards, consumers need to be vigilant against where they are purchasing their products. Consumers should only shop from a trusted seller using a secure payment system.
If you or anyone you know are victim of a money scam or are having trouble with your finances, contact a Fort Worth bankruptcy attorney about your options for finding debt relief.