Money Talks: Top 5 Complaints

If you work hard for your money, you certainly don't need to lose it to a scam.

That's why the FTC publishes a list of top sources of consumer complaints every year. Know what's on it and you might avoid becoming a victim.

For example, the fifth most popular source of consumer complaints last year, with about 60,000, was Shop-at-Home and Catalog Sales.

That includes not getting what you paid for, either literally or in terms of quality. Solution? Check store reputation and return policy before you buy and use a credit credit card for added protection.

At number four, with 64,000 complaints, is prizes, sweepstakes and lotteries.

As old as the Internet, these scams include emails saying you've won a lottery you didn't enter. Then they ask you for money to pay taxes or fees. Just say no way.

Bladismir Rojo, Postal Inspector, says, "There is no free money, if it's too good to be true, it is not true."

Number three most popular complaint was Internet Services: not being able to cancel an account, undisclosed charges, spyware, adware, etc.

Best protection? Don't every give anyone a dime without checking them out at the BBB or on complaint sites.

The number two consumer complaint last year was around being bullied by debt collectors. You have legal protection from these people: understand your rights and exercise them.

And the top source of consumer complaints? Identity theft.

Michael Galvin, Better Business Bureau, says, "Protect their name, birthday, address, birthday and most important, their social security number."

Well there you have it. The top consumer problems and how to avoid them. Want another look at those problems and more solutions? They're right here at