Consumer Protection and Education
The South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs and the Federal Trade Commission both provide valuable resources that can help consumers avoid fraudulent transactions and scams.
South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs
The South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs offers consumer education programs that cover a wide range of topics including identity theft, mortgage issues, credit reports and miscellaneous information on avoiding scams and fraud.
Federal Trade Commission
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) works under federal laws to protect and educate consumers. The FTC offers information on many topics including automobiles, credit and loans, and investments and business opportunities. The FTC Consumer Information webpage contains many free publications to help alert consumers on how to avoid fraud and scams.
Complaints Against Businesses
The Secretary of State's Office does not receive complaints against business entities. Additionally, the Secretary of State's Office does not have the authority to investigate business entities. Consumers who have complaints against South Carolina businesses arising out of the promotions or sale of consumer goods or services should direct their complaints to the South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs. Consumers may also direct their complaints to the Better Business Bureau.
Do Not Call Registry
The Do Not Call Registry is a national registry under the jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission that assists citizens in reducing the phone calls that they receive from telemarketers. While registration of your phone number will not end all calls, it should decrease the number of unwanted telemarketing calls you receive. You may register your home phone and cell phone numbers on the Do Not Call Registry.
Complaints Against State Agencies (Executive Branch)
Anyone suspecting fraud, waste, abuse, mismanagement, misconduct, violations of state or federal law, and wrongdoing in any agency under the Executive Branch should report it to the Office of the State Inspector General. Citizens may file complaints online or call the Office of the State Inspector General at 1-855-723-7283 (1-855-SC-FRAUD).