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May 2019

Hurricane season starts June 1. Are you ready?

June 1 is the official start of hurricane season, and a great time to make a plan to deal with weather emergencies. Extreme weather events, like hurricanes and other natural disasters, can occur with little warning, and the effects come in many forms. Hurricanes may include heavy rainfall, high winds, storm surge, inland flooding, tornadoes, and rip currents. Are you ready to leave your home at a moment’s notice? The FTC’s site, Dealing with Weather Emergencies, has practical tips to help you prepare for, deal with, and recover from a weather emergency.

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Homes & Mortgages

Make it a scam-free vacation

It’s almost summer! Right now, you probably have beaches on the brain or you’re thinking about that long-planned trip abroad. Before you head out, take steps to help keep your dream vacation from becoming a nightmare:

It’s Privacy Awareness Week 2019

This week is Asia Pacific Privacy Authorities (APPA) Privacy Awareness Week, held annually to raise global awareness about privacy issues. This year’s theme “Protecting Privacy is Everyone’s Responsibility,” is part of what drives the FTC to act on behalf of consumers and businesses every day. Here are a few recent FTC efforts on privacy.

Your right to post honest reviews

You probably read customer reviews to learn what people say about their experiences with a business or product. The Consumer Review Fairness Act (CRFA) protects people’s ability to share their truthful experiences and opinions. The FTC enforces the CRFA, and recently sued three businesses (and two of their owners) for violating that law.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Get a one-ring call? Don’t call back.

A while back, we warned you about the “one ring” scam. That’s when you get a phone call from a number you don’t know, and the call stops after just one ring. The scammer is hoping you’ll call back, because it’s really an international toll number and will appear as a charge on your phone bill — with most of the money going to the scammer. Well, the scam is back with a vengeance, and the FCC just issued a new advisory about it. Read the FCC’s advisory for more detail, but the advice from both agencies remains the same if you get one of these calls:

Parental Advisory: Dating Apps

Parents be warned: some dating apps – like FastMeet, Meet24 and Meet4U – allow adults to find and communicate with children. Concerned parents should remove these apps if they’re on children’s devices. You also can set your kids’ devices so they must get parental approval before purchasing any new apps. Here are a few more things you should know.

Avoid crowdfunding scams

Crowdfunding is one way to support a project you believe in and get rewards for that support. But the project you’re backing is only as good as the people behind it. Some dishonest people can take your money but produce nothing – no product, no project, and no reward.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Malware from illegal video streaming apps: What to know

The popularity of video streaming services has taken off in the past few years. It’s become easier to stream video through smart TVs, streaming boxes that connect to your not-so-smart TV, and even streaming sticks. These devices let you stream video through popular apps like Hulu, Netflix, SlingTV, Amazon Prime Video, and YouTube TV. Unfortunately, there are other apps that let you watch illegal pirated content. And hackers are using those apps to spread malware. Here’s what you need to know.

Amazing Wealth System Settlement Update