Telemarketer Paying $700,000 in Credit-Protection Settlement

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A company that marketed credit-protection packages to consumers has agreed to pay $700,000 to settle charges that it made misrepresentations in its telemarketing pitches, the Federal Trade Commission said yesterday.


Advanced Consumer Services, Orlando, FL, cold-called consumers and claimed it was working on behalf of consumers' credit card issuers or a government agency, according to the FTC. In their pitches, sales agents told consumers that they could be held liable for unauthorized charges on their credit cards and that criminals were obtaining their billing information over the Internet, the FTC said.


However, consumers are protected for all but $50 of unauthorized charges against them, the FTC said. In addition to making misrepresentations, the company billed consumers without their consent in some cases, according to the charges.


Money from the settlement will be used to repay consumers who bought the protection service, the FTC said. The company also must post a $300,000 bond before conducting any more telemarketing.


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