Sounds so… official, so big, so not something that cares about us average citizens. Actually, the Federal Trade Commission is quite involved in consumer affairs.
Started in 1915 under the Woodrow Wilson administration the FTC’s mandate was to protect consumers and promote competition. So, while you may hear on the news about the FTC going after big companies for unfair practices, preventing monopolies to form, and investigating fraud claims, what you may not know are its more down to consumer level, day to day activities.
The FTC does do the big stuff like review big mergers alongside the Department of Justice to make sure two merging companies do not create a monopoly and prevent competition. The FTC will investigate fraud charges reported by individuals or businesses. Those investigations can be against a single company or even an entire industry.
Did you know that the FTC has a site devoted solely to consumers? It is also the place where you can sign up for the Do Not Call Registry, file a complaint against a business or industry, report fraud, or read about the latest scam.
If you feel that you have been scammed the FTC may investigate if you it report to them. One of the mandates of the FTC is to protect consumers by keeping them informed. To this end the FTC publishes regular alerts available on their website or via email to alert consumers of the latest scams. Not only can you report if you have experienced a scam to the FTC but they also have tips on how to avoid them in the first place, how to spot them coming at you.
Visit the FTC here.