How to report a Scam

How to Report a Fraud or Scam

If you have observed a scam or been the victim of a scam, spam or fraud and want to report it for enforcement, here is a list of where to report different types of scams in the US, UK, Canada and many other countries. In some cases there is more than one agency to contact.  Some scams fit into more than one category, also.

Of course, in all cases, you can start by reporting it to us, using this form. We will use the information to warn other consumers and help you to direct it to law enforcement agencies.

A catch-all for bringing internet scams to the attention of the FBI and FTC is the U.S. government's Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) at Internet Fraud Complaints Center.  If you are looking for your local FBI Office Listings to report a crime or scam, click here.

Do you want to report a fraud, scam or crime to the FBI (the Federal Bureau of Investigation), but can't find the phone number for your nearest local FBI office?  See this page to find the closest office!

But to protect your finances, identity and in some cases, identity, you will generally also want to report the scam directly to another specific agency - see further down this page for specific directions.

Be sure to contact your bank or credit card company if you have given out credit card numbers, bank account information, etc.

And we will track and post more examples, so once again, please forward a copy to us - see the email address at the top of this page or cut and paste the email into our feedback form!

How to report different types of scams:

See this page for all other countries


Reporting to Email account providers

You can report spams and scams that are coming from specific email accounts to the providers. For example, if a scammer is using a Hotmail account to send scams or spams or receive replies, you can report it to Hotmail.  Be sure to forward the email and copy it's headers (click here to see how) into the email you send to the provider . That helps them to trace the source. See this page for the reporting addresses for the major email account providers.

Scams: AFF - Nigerian, Lottery scams, Money Transfer Frauds, Lawyers with deceased clients, etc.

  • Write to the Federal Trade Commission: spam@uce.gov - copy them on the email and explain what has occurred since. 
  • U.S. Secret Service: If you ever receive an e-mail or fax from someone you do not know requesting your assistance in a financial transaction, such as the transfer of a large sum of money into an account, or claiming you are the next of kin to an wealthy person who has died, or the winner of some obscure lottery and suffered a significant financial loss related to the advance fee fraud (so-called "Nigerian scam"), please contact your local Secret Service field office. Forward the email to the US Secret Service at 419.fcd@usss.treas.gov or via fax at (202) 406-5031. The Secret Service retains these messages for future investigations. Make sure that you include the scammer's message with its headers (see this page for information about how to do that). Local Secret Service office phone numbers are available in the Field Office Directory and may also be found on the inside cover of your local telephone directory. Any investigation regarding this type of fraud will be conducted on a case by case basis at the discretion of the local Secret Service and U.S. Attorney's Office.
  • If you have given money to the scammers, or believe a crime has been committed, contact your State Attorneys General

Businesses: Complaints with businesses with fixed addresses

  • Complaints with any US or Canadian business: Better Business Bureau - Contact the Better Business Bureau where the company is located.

Crimes

  • Any type of Crime; Write to the Federal Trade Commission: spam@uce.gov  and
  • contact your State Attorneys General. Your state Attorney General or local office of consumer protection is also listed in the government pages of your telephone book

Phishing and Spoofed websites

Medical Frauds, Illegal Drug Sales and Spam

Miscellaneous scams and frauds

Postal scams (actual letters in your mailbox / mail slot / letterbox / postbox)

Scams: Internet Scams

Search engine scam / spam results

Securities and Stocks

Spam

Stolen checks

  • If you have checks stolen, you will obviously need to quickly notify the police and obtain a copy of the police report.  You must also promptly notify your bank, and not only void those check numbers, but also close your account and open a new account.  The reason for this is your account numbers can used by the criminals to create counterfeit checks, like the ones sent to people in lottery scams.  (see this page as an example of what can happen). Also notify the check verification agencies yourself. Here is a list of these agencies:
    • National Check Fraud Service: 1-843-571-2143
    • SCAN: 1-800-262-7771
    • TeleCheck: 1-800-710-9898 or 927-0188 (also see this page for more information)
    • CrossCheck: 1-707-586-0551 or (800) 552-1900
    • Equifax Check Systems: 1-800-437-5120
    • International Check Services: 1-800-526-5380
    • CheckRite (800) 766-2748
    • ChexSystems (800) 428-9623

Telemarketers

Other U.S. Agencies and Websites

Non governmental agencies and private organizations



 

For a comprehensive list of national and international agencies to report scams, see this page.