There was a time in my younger years when I may have missed a loan payment, mostly due to the fact that I forgot to pay on time, and I got that dreaded debt collector call.

For the few times I received one of these calls, the person on the other line was polite and understanding since I am very good at paying my monthly bills early or at least on the due date, and it was the first time I had forgotten to make the monthly loan payment.

Up until recently, a debt collector could reach a person via phone or by mail, which can easily be ignored, and I'm sure it has been from those who tend to miss monthly bill payments for one reason or another.

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Well, now debt collectors have another option to contact you in an attempt to collect on a debt. And that's through social media according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. But there are rules a debt collector must follow to do so.

Some of the rules include keeping the message private - meaning no one else can see the message, identifying themselves as a debt collector when they send a private message or asking to become a friend, and providing you with an 'opt-out' option in the message so you will no longer receive any communication via social media.

And by the way, as for those debt collector phone calls, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau states that under the Debt Collection Rule, a debt collector can not call you more than seven times in a seven day period or within seven days after engaging in a phone conversation with you about a particular debt.

The CFPB does mention that this is only for phone calls and does not include a combination of phone calls and social media contact. And debt collectors are forbidden to threaten or harass a person while attempting to collect a debt.

For complete information and rules to protect your rights, visit the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website.

via Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

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