Consumer Fraud Reporting is an free online service to warn consumers about specific types of financial and other scams via the internet and provide a means to report scams and fraud.

In addition to thousands of actual examples of scam letters, emails, faxes and transcripts of phone conversations to help you identify a scam, we have many pages of concise lists of contact information, links, phone numbers and guidance to help you report the scam to the proper authorities, and to try to recover your loss.

To keep up to date on the types of scams in global circulation we stay in regular contact with overseas consumer agencies. If you are interested in a breakdown on the most recent FBI reports of Internet Fraud, Scam and Crime Statistics, see this page.


Consumer Fraud Reporting is fully independent and objective; it is not a government agency or affiliated with any government; we act as an information exchange to help raise public awareness about scams and to help to bring them to the attention of the proper enforcement authorities. Unfortunately, we do not have enforcement powers over local or overseas scams; but we aim to help you to find the proper enforcement agency! We also try to present the facts in a simple, clear, and hopefully, interesting manner!

Warning from the FBI: Check your computer:

  The FBI is warning all users of computers that connect to the internet that they may be infected.The only way to check if your computer is clean is to use the FBI's tool, found here.

Note About Advertisements Appearing Throughout the Website

We are funded by contributions and advertisers. We do not have anything to do with the advertisers (it is run by a third party). We have not investigated most of them - so follow the advice in our pages, not the ads. Don't assume the products or services in the ads have been cleared by CFR!

Products and services that we do recommend are:

If you see an ad that is inappropriate, please contact us and we will ask the outside ad aggregators that it be removed.


Resources


Did you receive an email from CFR?

We also NEVER send out emails, except to respond to consumers who write us - so if you receive an email from us, without writing to us first, then it is a scam - do not open it - just delete it.  This is a common scam using "spoofing", making the email address appear to come from a reputable website, while loading the message with spam, scams or worse.  So far, there is no technical way to stop it.


What Sort of Scams Do We Report On?

See the alphabetized list at left, and click on the topic that interests you.  Or click on the links below in the list of most popular topics.

Latest scams, cons or just plain rip-offs

Court, Legal and Criminal Activity:

Lotteries, Promotions and Prizes


Arrest Warrant Scams

  • Arrest Warrant Scam - Scammers create a fake Caller ID, which allows them to call you and appear to be calling from a local police, sheriff or other law enforcement agency. They say there is a warrant out for your arrest, but that you can pay a fine in order to avoid criminal charges. Of course, these scammers don't take credit cards; only a Western Union Moneygram, other wire transfer or pre-paid debit card will do

Astrology, Psychic, Faith and Religion Scams

  • Astrology and psychic schemes sent from an overseas based psychic, clairvoyant or astrologer offering fortune telling books, reports or a talisman for a fee.

Banking Scams

Buying, Selling, Shopping and Auctions Online and Off

Checks / Cheques - Fake and Counterfeit

Computer viruses, Worms and Other Malware

Comic Relief - The Funny Side of Scams

Con Men / Con Games

  • Confidence scams - Not all scams and scammers appear in email, a letter or a phone call.  Some approach you where and when you least expect them: in church, at school, in a grocery store or gym. Fond what to watch out for here.

Counterfeit Products

Credit Reporting

Debt collection scams

Dubious Claims and Commercials

  • You just saw a commercial on TV, heard it on the radio or saw a website, and are wondering, is that for real or a scam?  Is that product or service. See this page of commercials and claims we are currently investigating.
    SocialSecurity211.com

Education Scams

  • Quick degree scams - "Get your degree in 30 days!" "No studying required", "Turn your experience into a degree". Sure, they're accredited and the degree is legal and meaningful. And we have some swampland to sell you, too. Click here for details.

Email Scams and Spam

Extortion Scams

  • Death Threat Extortion Scams: Not satisfied with trying to con money from victims, some scammers are trying death threats and extortion scams.  See this page for more information and sample emails.

Scams written in languages other than English

Fake Organization Scams

False or deceptive advertising and defective products

  • See current cases of false advertising, defective product investigations, exaggerated product claims, product scams and the court or FTC settlements.
  • Click here to search the FTC database to see if a particular company or product has been investigated for false advertising, defective products or other trade issues? Just search the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) database.

Fax Scams

  • Are junk faxes and fax scams with names like "vacation memos" and "stock tips" piled up on your company fax machine? Does you fax machine spew out junk advertising? Read about these scams here.

Grants - Fake

"Green Card Lottery"

Hoaxes, Myths and Email Chain Letters

  • Hoaxes and nuisance scams - Your water bottle won't give you cancer and Bill Gates doesn't want to send anyone to Disney World, least of all, just because you send an email to 20 friends...
  • Fake business deals: "I need a business partner in the U.S."... and more.

House, Home and Apartment Scams

  • Home repair scams - Just because they advertise in the yellow pages, drive a business van, or look like a technician, doesn't mean they aren't out to scam you!
  • Mortgage scams

Identity Theft and Credit Reports

  • Some of the most common identity theft and credit report scams are listed below. You can protect yourself from identity theft, but do your homework. Many companies have resources available online to help you know your best options.
  • Identity Theft - we have loads of free facts sheets, guides, resources, contact lists, who to report the crimes to and how to repair the damage here.
  • Check your credit report, for free! Yes, you really can.  The US Government mandated it.  But watch out for the scams.  Find out how, here. And does FreeCreditReports.com give you a free no obligation credit report ?  No, they don't! Read about that here!
  • Freeze your credit! Did you also know that in many states you can freeze to credit information  Even if your state is one of the few that doesn't allow a freeze, you can still freeze your files at the three major credit bureaus.  See this page for more information about both freezes.
  • Credit card account information thefts - if you have a credit card from a bank or department store, you may want to periodically check this page, to see if your account information has been stolen!
  • Phishing - fake emails and fake websites pretending to be your bank, credit card company or other agency, and asking for your private account information. Often they claim to be from PayPal, Barclay's Bank, Citibank, Chase Manhattan bank, or other well-known names.
  • Pharming - the latest scam, is that website the one you think it is... or a fake?

Investing, Currency, Precious metals, Retirement, Loans, Debt Collection and Other Financial Scams

Job, Employment and Recruiting Scams

Loan and Mortgage scams

Lottery and prize scams

Mail / Postal Scams

Malware

Medical Scams

  • Domain name registration scams - If you have a website and domain name, you receive what looks like a bill, telling you your domain is about to expire. DON'T pay it - see this page first!
  • Medical frauds and hoaxes - Don't be fooled by quacks, fake medicines, magnetic shoe inserts, and electronic abdominal exercisers.  Find out the truth here!

Miscellaneous Scams: Food, Travel, Etc

  • Food frauds - Believe it or not, there are actually fake foods - usually worthless supplements and pills and foods making false health claims.
  • Travel scams - Have you "won" a "free vacation"?  But it turns out to be a sales pitch for time sharing condominiums!

Money Making, Income, Get-Rich and "Passive Residual Income" Scams

Mortgage scams

Mystery Shopper Scams

  • Mystery or Secret Shopper scams: Have you heard that you can get paid to shop, as a mystery shopper or secret shopper? If you received an email that claims you can earn a living as a secret or mystery shopper by dining at elegant restaurants, shopping at pricey stores, or checking into luxurious hotels, beware! 

Online Dating and Social Networking Scams

  • Russian Dating Scams - You hear of American men meeting beautiful Russian women online and marrying them. But have you heard of all the guys that where scammed, and lost thousands of dollars?
  • Dating scams and scammers - Con Men aren't just men. And some women you may meet online aren't women, at all; just more com MEN. See these reports from victims for examples of online dating scams.

Other Countries: Scams Targeting Residents of Other English-Speaking Countries
(UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Etc)

Phone scams

Product Scams

  • See current cases of false advertising, defective product investigations, exaggerated product claims, product scams and the court or FTC settlements.
  • Click here to search the FTC database to see if a particular company or product has been investigated for false advertising, defective products or other trade issues? Just search the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) database.
  • Low "T", Low Testosterone - and similar scam products - It turns out that medical authorities say this actually affects very, very few men and the advertisements enormously hype both the prevalence and the effects of their "products".
  • Kinoki Foot Pads - to remove body toxins by drawing them through the skin in your feet into a fabric pad.  We thought about writing a page about this, but honestly it's just so idiotic, that if you buy them, you probably also have a Q-Ray bracelet in drawer and nothing we could say would convince you that they are worthless. With regard to the Q-Ray, the FTC filed a complaint with the courts on May 27, 2003, after several months of investigation and preparation for litigation (see this page on the FTC.gov website ). Remember, just because a product is advertised on TV does NOT mean that its claims are true or approved by any government agency. They can say whatever they like in an advertisement, and hope the government doesn't notice or have the resources to go after them. But if you like to call Kinoki up just to express how you feel about their product, here is their phone number: 888-338-6921. Being such a reputable company, we're sure they'd love to hear from you about how happy you are with their product.
  • Right Size Smoothies: See what we have discovered thus far about this popularly advertised weight loss smoothie
  • Magnets and magnetic bracelets

Shopping Online

  • Hidden subscription scam

Spam:

  • How to Stop Spam almost forever! You don't have to face an inbox full of porn, spam, scams and junk every day.  Here's how to stop it.

Telemarketing Scams

  • Spam phone calls.  Do you get unwanted calls from telemarketers on your cell phone or home phone? See reports of these calls and examples here.
  • How to Block Phone Telemarketers  - Do you receive phone calls from telemarketers?  Or calls from a fax machine?  Or odd calls in which no one answers on the other end?  Or perhaps a recorded voice tells you to hold on the line? See this page for what to do!
  • How to Block Junk Fax Telemarketers
  • Fax Scams - Junk faxes that are designed to look like internal company memos or other misleading communications

Webmastering / Web development Scams

  • Domain name / registration scams - if you have a domain name, sooner or later you will receive one of these scams.
  • Search engine spam - You click on a link in Google looking for some information and you go to a website that has nothing but more links to other websites... and lots of advertisements.  You've been spammed!

Work-from-Home scams

  • Work-from-Home scams - Tell your boss to jump in a lake. Easy data entry at home.  Medical transcription.  Be crazy-like-a-fox, or just go-here-next... Yes, work from home is possible; for the scammers who think up these work-from-home scams to sell con you! There are a very few work from home programs that appear to be legitimate - see this page.
  • Start your own work from Home business - Better than being an employee for a call center is being your own business.  This website tells you how.

What Resources Will You Find Here?

  • Links, phone numbers and other specific information for many frauds and scams. See the blue buttons on the left! And see this page for resources to help investigate a potential scam.
  • Effects of Scams on the victims, and even unrelated bystanders, as well as society.
  • Do You Want To Help?  Here's your chance to help uncover scammers by investigating some of our leads! Read these emails and see if you know whether the business is legitimate or not!