Consumer Tips

Report | Arizona PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

Failing the Fix

The Right to Repair coalition, which includes PIRG, iFixit and, has been calling for better access to parts, tools, and information needed to repair modern devices. Consumers who seek to purchase easily repairable products – especially from companies who do not fight to prevent Right to Repair – can use the grades in the report as a starting point for making those evaluations.

Counterfeit products are everywhere; here are tips to avoid buying any of them online

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

When we think of counterfeits, we often think of luxury products like bags or shoes. But counterfeits have crept into every type of product, with government officials finding counterfeit pharmaceuticals, hygiene products and children’s products.

News Release | Arizona PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

As part of National Consumer Protection Week, Arizona PIRG Education Fund releases Top 10 list of financial complaints to CFPB in 2021

According to the Arizona PIRG Education Fund, in 2021, a record number of people from across the country filed complaints with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Public Consumer Complaint Database. Here in Arizona, close to 7,900 complaints were filed, likely representing a sliver of the scope as not all Arizonans are aware of or may choose to file a complaint with the CPFB.

Report | Arizona PIRG Education Fund | Consumer Tips

Arizona Top Ten 2021 Consumer Financial Complaint Issues In the CFPB Database

Arizona PIRG Education Fund downloaded 2021 complaints to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and ranked by issue the problem the consumer self-identified as having with a company.

Buy Now Pay Later plans: Tips to Avoid the Pitfalls

By Hannah Rhodes and Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog team

Complaints are soaring about the “Buy Now, Pay Later” financing schemes that businesses increasingly are offering as an alternative to up-front payments in full. Consumers making purchases as small as $50 online are often offered these payment plans, which can turn into debt traps. Here are some tips to avoid the interest and fees that often come with these “deals.”

How to find mistakes on your credit report

By Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog

A third of complaints to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last year involved incorrect information on people’s credit reports.


How to recognize fake online reviews of products and services

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

Endorsements to deceive consumers are plentiful on the Internet. To mediate this problem, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) put hundreds of companies on notice in October 2021 that if they use fabricated endorsements to deceive consumers, they could face financial penalties up to $43,793 per violation. 

How to avoid counterfeit COVID products

By Hannah Rhodes, Consumer Watchdog Associate
March 11, 2022

While all counterfeits can potentially carry health and safety risks, counterfeit products related to COVID-19 prevention or testing are especially concerning.  The false safety sense with fake COVID-19 at-home tests or counterfeit masks can directly affect consumer’s health. 

Dark patterns: A step-by-step guide to protect your privacy on your phone

By Isabel Brown, Consumer Watchdog Associate

Apps and social media are a part of everyday life. They help us stay connected to the world around us. But it can be easy to overlook the risk involved with making personal information accessible online, especially when that information can be recorded, bought and sold by the companies running the apps.

Identity theft is soaring; reduce your risk dramatically by simply freezing your credit files

By Teresa Murray, Consumer Watchdog
March 7, 2022

The problem of identity theft continues to grow. In 2021, people filed more complaints with the Federal Trade Commission about identity theft than anything else. In fact, identity theft comprised 25 percent of complaints filed last year, hitting 1.4 million cases, double the number from 2019.


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