Sometimes the FTC is able to return money to people who were ripped off in a con artist’s scheme. But scammers try to cause confusion and take advantage at every step.

If you lost money in a scam, you might get a call or email from someone claiming that they can help you recover your funds – if you pay them, hand over personal information, or allow them remote access to your computer. Don’t do it! Recent complaints to the FTC show that scammers are:

  • targeting people who lost money to tech support scams
  • claiming to be from the FTC’s Refund Department or Refund Division
  • using the name of real FTC employees.

So how can you tell whether an FTC refund is real?

  • If the FTC contacts you about a refund, you’ll find information about the case at ftc.gov/refunds. You can be sure the phone numbers and links on this page are legit.
  • The FTC never requires you to pay fees or asks you for sensitive information, like your Social Security number or bank account information. The FTC also never asks for remote access to your computer. If someone claims to be from the FTC and does, it’s a scam.

If you get a call from someone who says they’re from the FTC but asks you for money or sensitive information, please tell the real FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.

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