FTC acts on text messaging debt collection scam

May 26, 2015

WASHINGTON (5/26/15)--Three debt collection operations that allegedly violated federal law by sending threatening and deceiving text messages, emails and phone calls have been temporarily halted at the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) request.

The operations were halted by federal courts in New York and Georgia, and the FTC is seeking to permanently end the practices.

According to the FTC, the three defendants used text messages, emails and phone calls to falsely threaten to arrest or sue consumers. They also unlawfully contacted friends, family members and employers, withheld information consumers needed to confirm or dispute debts, and did not identify themselves as debt collectors, as required by law.

The defendants are the Unified Global Group, Premier Debt Acquisitions and The Primary Group. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia entered a temporary restraining order against The Primary Group defendants May 11.

The U.S. District Court for the Western District of District of New York entered temporary restraining orders against the Unified Global Group and Premier Debt Acquisitions defendants May 12.

 The FTC has charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.