HERSHEY, Pa. — Anyone who has developed a kidney stone will tell you that the pain of passing one is worth an ounce of prevention.

About 10 percent of the population will form a stone-like calcium deposit in the urinary tract at some point in their lives, and contrary to popular belief, these stones are not caused by an excess of calcium in the diet but by other dietary factors such as dehydration and excess sodium.

by Colleen Tressler
Consumer Education Specialist, FTC

Shopping for a car can be exciting. But wading through ads and promotions from car dealers, and deciding how to pay, can make it stressful.

If you decide to finance the car, you have two options: get a loan from a bank, credit union, or finance company, or get dealership financing. Either way, the financing application requires an honest listing of your monthly income and the amount of your down payment.

But not all dealers play by the rules.   more...
by Carol Kando-Pineda
Attorney, Division of Consumer and Business Education

You get a text, call, or email from someone who says they’re with the government. They may claim to be a U.S. Marshal, saying you must pay a fine for missing jury duty. Or the IRS, saying that you owe thousands in back taxes. Some might threaten legal action, deportation, or arrest if you don’t pay up or give them your financial information.

In other cases, it sounds less scary and more like your lucky day. The call, text, or email will say you’ve won a prize, the lottery, or a grant — but you need to pay some fees or taxes to get your winnings.

by Carol Kando-Pineda
Attorney, Division of Consumer and Business Education

You’re working on your computer when, suddenly, a message pops up on the screen: “Virus detected! Call now for a free security scan and to repair your device.” That’s a tech support scam. Don’t call, text, or email. Legit tech support companies don’t operate that way.

Scammers pose as big-name companies and use pop-up messages, fake websites, and phone calls to trick you into thinking your computer has an urgent problem. Their plan is to get your money by selling you worthless software, enrolling you in fake programs, or getting you to pay for useless tech support. The scammers urge you to call a toll-free number immediately, threatening that you may lose personal data if you don’t.

The Department of State renewed its Travel Advisory for Haiti on July 9, 2018. The Department continues to advise travelers to Do not travel to Haiti due to civil unrest and crime. This replaces the previous Travel Advisory was issued on July 9, 2018.

The full text of the new Travel Advisory is as follows:

Haiti – Level 4: Do Not Travel

Do not travel to Haiti due to civil unrest and crime.

The Federal Trade Commission today announced that the agency will hold a series of public hearings on whether broad-based changes in the economy, evolving business practices, new technologies, or international developments might require adjustments to competition and consumer protection enforcement law, enforcement priorities, and policy. The multi-day, multi-part hearings, which will take place this fall and winter, will be similar in form and structure to the FTC’s 1995 “Global Competition and Innovation Hearings” under the leadership of then-Chairman Robert Pitofsky.

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