NEW YORK (WCBS 880) – An entire industry of fraud is what New York City Consumer Affairs commissioner Jonathan Mintz calls it.

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“There are times when I’ll come up in front of the camera and warn you about some bad players in an industry. When it comes to upfront fee debt settlement, the entire industry, in our opinion, is illegitimate,” said Mintz on Tuesday.

His office has subpoenaed fifteen companies, many of their ads hard to miss on subways and buses.

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They’ll turn over what they find to law enforcement.

“There is a way to get help when you’re drowning in debt, but not by falling for promises where people can’t deliver,” said Mintz.

Mintz says these companies’ services work less than one percent of the time.

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He advises New Yorkers to use their instincts.