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!
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.