Top 10 scams of 2011
Identify it: Because the federal government announced or expanded several mortgage relief programs this year, all kinds of sound-alike websites have popped up to try to fool consumers into parting with their money.
Avoid it: Most scams ask for an upfront fee to help you deal with your mortgage company or the government. Do not enter your credit card information -- these are services you could easily do yourself for free. Don't trust a website claiming to be a government agency, unless the URL ends in ".gov."