CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - As the partial government shutdown stretches on, scammers may be taking advantage of a gap in protection.
The Federal Trade Commission regulates the Do Not Call Registry which reduces the number of robocalls you receive. That registry is not being operated during the partial government shutdown. The F-T-C also isn’t taking complaint reports during the shutdown.
When you go to FTC.gov online, you’ll find a notification about several services *not available during the shutdown. Those services include:
- National Do Not Call Registry
- Consumer Sentinel Network provides law enforcement access to millions of consumer complaints.
- Complaint Assistant at FTC.gov/complaint is where consumers can go to report a scam.
- Identitytheft.gov allows you to report identity theft to the FTC.
- Econsumer.gov allows consumers to report international complaints.
This FTC isn’t sending out scam alerts now and hasn’t sent a warning in more than three weeks. Consumers need to be extra vigilant with incoming phone calls from unfamiliar numbers.
If you get a call or voice mail from a person claiming to be from the IRS, Social Security, a law enforcement agency, business or charity, you need to be on guard and remember these tips:
- Watch out for high pressure tactics threats. Scammers will try to get you to make a payment or threaten arrest if you don’t pay.
- If the caller asks you to settle debt, pay a fine, or make a payment buy using a pre-paid credit card or gift card such as iTunes, Amazon, Google Play or others, hang up the phone.
- Write down the number so you can eventually report it.
If you have a scam story to share, email Kyle Jordan at Scams@live5news.com.