Consumer Action Network

Don't Get Ripped Off

Our economy needs to be fair to consumers in order to function. While a company may make a short-term profit from ripping off consumers or putting an unsafe product on the market, it's not good for anyone in the long term. 

After Wall Street practices brought down the entire U.S. and parts of the world economies, Congress finally stepped up in July 2010 and created the Student PIRG-backed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a new agency that will act as a counterbalance to the banks and ensure that the credit cards, mortgages, and student loans that consumers use are safe and easy to understand. When you have a complaint about a bank or credit card company, you can call on the new CFPB.

Our consumer program works to protect consumers by:

  • Alerting the publice to hidden dangers, scams, and unsafe products
  • Educating consumers about the choices available by conducting price surveys of various products and services available to students in an effort to allow them to the make the best choices for themselves.
  • Educating consumers about their rights in the marketplace by producing consumer guides to help people navigate the marketplace.
  • Advocating for change by working to build the support it takes to pass consumer protection legislation in our states and in D.C.

As students, we're particularly vulnerable to some specific consumer issues:

Latest Updates

Blog Post | Consumer Protection

HR 4078 A BILL THAT WILL SHUTDOWN ALL PUBLIC HEALTH AND CONSUMER SAFEGUARDS | Student PIRGs

HR 4078 yesterday passed a floor vote in the House, this bill if passed by Congress will shutdown the U.S. regulatory system as we know it. Two other equally hazardous bills are rolled into it, H.R. 4607 and H.R. 3862. Combined, these bills will halt or delay virtually ALL rule making and public health protections and do absolutely nothing to stimulate the economy or new job opportunities. They would shut down safeguards that Americans take for granted.  This bill will now pass to the Senate and if Congress makes this bill law we will see the following consequences.

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News Release | WISPIRG | Consumer Protection, Corporate

POLL SHOWS VOTERS FAVOR STRONG OVERSIGHT OF WALL STREET AND BACK NEW CFPB

Madison, WI – July 18, 2012 -- Financial reforms enacted in response to the financial  meltdown remain popular with those likely to vote in 2012, a new opinion poll by Lake Research Partners shows. The poll was commissioned by AARP, National Council of La Raza  (NCLR), the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) and Americans for Financial Reform (AFR). Saturday July 21 will mark the two year anniversary of the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a new agency with a strong record of successes for consumers despite facing constant unfounded political attacks in its first year of work.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

FOR ITS OWN FIRST BIRTHDAY, CFPB SENDS GIFTS TO CONSUMERS | Ed Mierzwinski

Tomorrow, Saturday, July 21, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau turns one year old. The CFPB already has achieved a record of significant accomplishments in its first year to protect veterans, students, seniors, military families and all consumers.

And this week, the CFPB has celebrated its own birthday by sending consumers several more gifts.

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New Account Fraud

The California Public Interest Research Group has released a new report on identity theft that should raise some eyebrows. Pulling together statistics from the High Technology Theft Apprehension and Prosecution program, the Federal Trade Commission, Javelin Strategy and Research, and other credible sources, CALPIRG paints an increasingly bleak picture concerning financial identity theft. Of greatest interest to your Guide was the information on new account fraud.

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Financial loss from identity theft increasing, report says

Fewer people were victims of identity theft last year than in 2010, but each person lost substantially more money, according to a new report by the California Public Interest Research Group.

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