Thousands Pay Fake Debt Collector Over $1 Million
CNBC reported last week on a recent Federal Trade Commission (FTC) action to return over $1 million in payments made by nearly 2,000 consumers to a fake debt collection company.
Before making any payments to a debt collector, it's very important to confirm: 1) who owes the money, if any, and 2) that the debt collector has the right to collect that money if it's owed.
As a first step, always request a Debt Collection Validation Notice. This will provide important information about the alleged debt, which can help determine what to do next. Does the debt look legitimate? Is this for an account that was previously closed or paid off? Does the debt collector have the correct name and contact information for the alleged account? Was a fake account created after identity theft? Or in this case, is the debt collection attempt just an outright scam?
Never make a payment to a debt collector before truly understanding the underlying nature of the debt. If you're being harassed or need help with a debt collector reach out to me to discuss what options might be available to you.