The FTC recently imposed the second-steepest penalty ever imposed on a debt collector. According to the New York Times, Asset Acceptance, one of the largest collection companies in the country, recently agreed to pay a 2.5 million penalty to settle charges that company deceived consumers in the process of trying to collect debts.

I suppose that this is supposed to be good news and maybe even an indication that the federal government is finally poised to take action against an industry that nightly leaves thousands of grandmothers and single mothers across the country in a state of terror, waiting for collectors to make good on their false promises to sic the sheriff on them or have them imprisoned. However, given the profitability of the debt collection industry, the penalty doesn’t even rate as a slap on the wrist.

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