Editor’s note: This is the third and final article in a series about the resurfacing of scams seeking personal information.
According to usa.gov, the first thing to do if you are a victim of a scam is to report the scam to the Arkansas Office of the Attorney General at (501) 682-2007. Anyone who lost money or other possessions in a scam should also report it to local enforcement authorities.
In addition, one can report scams to the federal government. An individual’s report may keep others from experiencing a scam.
Government agencies use reports of scams to track scam patterns. They may even take legal action against a company or industry based on the reports. However, agencies usually don’t follow up after a report, and can’t recover lost money. So in the cases of individuals who send money, there is no chance to recover it.
In the case of a government scam, one may report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by calling 1-800-FTC-HELP (382-4357). In the case of an Internet scam, one may contact the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) at 1-877-382-4357. One can also contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov.
The FTC accepts complaints about most scams, including:
Computer support scams
Demands for the target to send money (check, wire transfers, gift cards)
Student loan or scholarship scams
Prize, grants, and sweepstakes offers
The FTC also collects reports of identity theft. Report identity theft online at IdentityTheft.gov or by phone at 1-877-438-4338 (9 a.m-8 p.m., ET).