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Illegal robocalls and unwanted telemarketing calls can be annoying. Tips to protect  yourself and steps that could lead to consequences for offenders, including possible fines. 

Avoiding scams while doing your taxes and how to get your stimulus payment if you have not received it. 

You have six weeks to file your income tax return for 2020. Every year, it seems there are more issues to watch out for. 

 | by
Teresa Murray
Consumer Watchdog

Some of your friends or relatives have received two COVID-19 relief/ stimulus payments in the past year. And a third may be on the way soon. If you haven’t received anything yet and believe you should have, don’t fret.

 | by
Teresa Murray
Consumer Watchdog

Freezing your files protects you not just from someone fraudulently opening a credit card or applying for a loan in your name. It also can prevent someone from accessing your tax records with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or opening a Social Security account using your information or potentially launching a slew of other problems. 

My first-hand, step-by-step guide to freezing your credit reports.

 | by
Teresa Murray
Consumer Watchdog

One in 20 people was a victim in 2019. Account takeovers, which involve a criminal gaining access to an existing account, soared by 72 percent in 2019.

Fraudulent unemployment claims have been on the rise during the pandemic. Scammers received more than $36 billion by fraudulently claiming unemployment benefits last year, with millions of cases of fraud suspected. You could be next.

 | by
Teresa Murray
Consumer Watchdog

Fraud/ identity theft is the No. 1 complaint to the Federal Trade Commission, with 2.2 million complaints last year. Consumers reported losing $3.3 billion last year, up from $1.8 billion in 2019.