August 2013

Back to School Smarts

With your kids heading back to school, you might be hoping they spend more time with their noses in a textbook than with their eyes glued to a screen. And since you know they’ll be spending time online — socializing, sharing photos, and downloading apps — take the opportunity to talk about being tech smart as well as book smart!

Net Cetera: Chatting With Kids About Being Online

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

FTC Launches its New Financial Educators Site where Everything is FREE!

If you teach people about everyday financial issues, like saving and shopping, credit and debt, buying a home or car, or looking for a job or paying for school, the FTC is your information destination. Consumer information from the FTC is free and in the public domain. That means you can print it, copy it, post it, or link to it freely — and for free.

Financial Educators Banner

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

A Biz Opp Breakdown

Be your own boss! No experience necessary! Make $60,000 a year from home! Sounds pretty good, huh? Before you sign on the dotted line, you might want to listen to this 1-minute tip from the FTC...

Audio Tips Icon

Blog Topics: 
Jobs & Making Money

Steering Clear of a Storm-Damaged Car, The Sequel

The FTC, the nation’s consumer protection agency, first warned consumers to be on the lookout for flood-damaged cars in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Almost a year later, news reports indicate that water-damaged cars that endured Hurricane Sandy are being sold by private sellers and showing up on used car lots.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Coping After a Weather Emergency: Keep Your Guard Up

Although you may have lost your belongings in a weather emergency, you haven't lost your good judgment. You can protect your personal information and finances by following a few rules.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Check Your Phone Bill Day

OK, it’s not really Check Your Phone Bill Day. But how about checking your wireless phone bill anyway? Pull it up online, dig out your paper copy, or if you don’t get a detailed bill from your phone company, go ahead and ask for one (we’ll wait).

virus detected image with a remove button

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Setting Out on Your Own: Money Management and Credit 101

Whether you’re heading off to your freshman year of college or getting your first apartment, preparing to be out on your own can be fun and exciting. It also means taking on new financial responsibilities. The decisions you make now about how you manage your money can affect your ability to get credit, insurance, a place to live, and even a job.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Preparing for a Weather Emergency

Extreme weather sometimes occurs with little warning. To help lessen fear and anxiety, and to reduce the loss of property, everyone needs to prepare.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Keeping ‘em in Check

Write checks at the store? You’ll want to read this.

One of the nation’s largest check authorization services — Certegy Check Services, Inc. — has agreed to pay $3.5 million to settle FTC charges that it violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Don‘t Text Back

You get a text message claiming your email account has been hacked. The message asks you to text back in order to reactivate your account. Has your account really been hacked, or is this a scam?

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

Protecting Your Child's Personal Information at School

During the school year, parents are asked to sign many forms. In the wrong hands, the personal information on these forms can be used to commit fraud in your child’s name — to apply for government benefits, open credit card accounts, or apply for a loan.

When children are victims of identity theft, the crime may go undetected for years — or at least until your child is old enough to apply for a job or a loan, or rent an apartment. But there are laws that help safeguard your family’s personal information.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

After a Weather Emergency: Is It Safe to Drink the Water?

After a weather emergency, you may be concerned about the safety of your drinking water. Be wary of someone trying to sell you a water treatment device.

Blog Topics: 
Health & Fitness

Checking Into Foreign Lotteries and Sweepstakes

Have you received an official-looking letter saying you won a foreign lottery or sweepstakes? Responding to it can be tempting: After all, maybe there’s a possibility that you won some money that could turn your dreams into reality!

Fake Checks Can Cost You Audio Tip

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Phone-y Funds for Furloughed Feds

As a government employee, are you eligible for a free government grant? Sorry, but no, despite the calls you may be getting.

a pile of money

Blog Topics: 
Jobs & Making Money

Coping with Flooding

After a flood, your home and its contents may look beyond hope, but many of your belongings can be restored. If you do things right, your flooded home can be cleaned up, dried out, rebuilt, and reoccupied.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

Preparing for Hispanic Heritage Month? Order Our New Bilingual Bookmark!

If you are planning an activity to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15) here’s an idea: order the FTC’s new “Visit Us” bookmark and distribute it at your event!
Image of Bookmark

Facing Debt Collection? Know Your Rights

Dealing with financial trouble is stressful enough. But when a debt collector is hounding you using unscrupulous methods, it can make matters even worse.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Coping with a Weather Emergency: Paying Your Mortgage

Even if your home is uninhabitable after an extreme weather event, you still have a mortgage. Contact your lender immediately to discuss your options.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

Who’s Calling? Not the Government.

How many of us pick up the phone, expecting to hear, “Hey, you owe me money. Now pay up – or else”? But that’s what’s been happening recently to people in the immigrant community. Those aren’t the exact words, and the caller claims to be from the government – but that’s the message people are getting: Send money. Or else.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Might Your Search Yield a Scam?

Do you ever look for products or information online by typing a word into a search engine? I do too. By now, I bet we both know there’s no guarantee that the first result will be the best one. Anyone can set up shop online with almost any name. You may get links to pages that are out-of-date, off-topic, or stocked with low-quality products. Here are some tips for your next search.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Contacting Families, Friends, and Key Businesses After a Weather Emergency

When disaster strikes, thoughts turn to the welfare of family, friends, and colleagues. Here are several sites to help ease the worry.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Ackk — My Email’s Been Hacked

Friends and family are getting emails or messages you didn’t send. Or your social media accounts have posts you didn’t make. What can you do when it looks like someone’s taken over your account? Here are the steps you can follow if you get hacked.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity