British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Saturday that he would force credit card companies to end "sharp practices" and to make it harder for people to get themselves into debt.

Brown also said he wants store-card and credit card companies to "clean up their act" as part of measures to prevent a recurrence of the economic crisis.

He said the steps would be announced this week to get borrowers "a fairer deal."

Brown said card companies should end "sharp practices" such as increasing the interest rate on existing debts without explanation, issuing unsolicited credit card checks and raising credit limits without being asked.

The government's campaign will add to measures last week to "make sure you're not lured into taking on home loans you can't really afford," he said.

Official data released Friday showed that Britain is in its longest recession since 1955.

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