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Financial Planning Fraud Center

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Scam Alerts

Each year 25 million Americans, one in every ten, are victims of scams totaling billions of dollars. Don't make the mistake of believing that only the gullible, young, or desperate fall victim to fraud or that scams are only perpetrated on the Internet. The National Consumers League reports that in 2004, nearly 75% of scam victims were between the ages of 20 and 50 years old. The average loss was $895 per victim.

Protect yourself from scams by learning how to recognize the warning signs of potential fraud, remaining vigilant, and taking steps to prevent becoming a victim of money scams. Helping you do that is the purpose of this Financial Planning Fraud Center. The links below will take you to details on specific scams. Further down this page, other popular scams will be briefly listed.

Current Scam List

In 2004, the top Internet scams, according to the National Fraud Watch, were:

  1. Online Auction Scams
  2. General Merchandise Scams
  3. Nigerian Money Offer Scams
  4. Hushing Scams
  5. Information/Adult Services Scams (downloads of music, photos, games, etc.)
  6. Fake Check Scams
  7. Lotteries/Lottery Club Scams
  8. Computer Equipment/ Software Purchases Scams
  9. Fake Escrow Services Scams
  10. Internet Access Services Scams

Other popular Internet scams include:

  • Advance Fee Loan Scams
  • Bogus Credit Card Offer Scams
  • Business Opportunities Scams
  • Buyers Clubs Scams
  • Charity Scams
  • Credit Card Loss Protection Scams
  • Credit Repair Scams
  • Identity Theft
  • Investment Scams
  • Job Scams
  • Magazine Sales Scams
  • Medicare Rx Discount Card Scams
  • Pyramids and Multilevel Marketing Scams
  • Scholarship Scams
  • Travel Fraud Scams
  • Work-at-Home Scams

In 2004, the top telemarketing scams were:

  1. Prizes/Sweepstakes Scams
  2. Credit Card Offers Scams
  3. Scholarship/Educational Scams Grants
  4. Advance Fee Loan Scams
  5. Magazine Sales Scams
  6. Lotteries/Lottery Club Scams
  7. Work at Home Scams
  8. Buyers Clubs Scams
  9. Travel/Vacations Scams
  10. Phishing Scams (via telephone or mail)

This Financial Planning Fraud Center will be expanded to include detailed information on popular money scams as well as tips and advice to help you prevent being one of the many victims of fraud.

If you've been the victim of a money scam, please post about it in the Financial Planning Forum and help protect others.

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