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Money & Credit

Pause on federal student loan payments extended

As you may have heard, the U.S. Department of Education announced another extension of the flexibilities offered to federal student loan borrowers. Understanding these options can help you make more informed decisions about paying your bills and prioritizing your debts. The benefits have been extended through May 1, 2022.

Look beyond the award when you hire a lawyer

If you suddenly need to hire a lawyer, you might start searching online. When you do, you’re likely to see lawyers and law firms with fancy-looking seals and badges on their websites claiming they’re among the best in their field. Before you move forward, know that some of these seals or badges might be “vanity” or “ego” awards that lawyers can buy.

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Money & Credit

’Tis the season for student loan scam calls

If you have a federal student loan, you probably already know that the Coronavirus emergency relief program that has paused your payments is ending. Repayments will begin again after May 1, 2022. Scammers know it, too, and are looking for ways to take advantage: they’re calling, texting, and e-mailing to try to use any confusion around restarting your student loan payments to steal your money and personal information.

How to donate wisely after a disaster

As residents across Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Missouri begin taking stock following the devastating series of tornadoes that hit their states, you might be looking for ways to help the people and communities affected. Unfortunately, scammers also are busy trying to take advantage. You want to make sure your money gets in the hands of charities you want to help.

If you’re looking for a way to help, the FTC urges you to be cautious of potential charity scams.

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Money & Credit

Make your donation count by avoiding end-of-year charity scams

The season of giving is here. If you celebrate Christmas, you might be about to fill some stockings. But, for many, holiday giving includes supporting charitable causes. Charities in need of support will be making year-end appeals by phone, mail, email, and social media. Scammers know that, too, and every year try to trick people into giving to them, not the real deal. So here are some steps to take to make sure the charity is real and your money will support the programs you care about.

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Money & Credit

Avoid a flood-damaged used car

Automakers are producing fewer new cars right now due to a computer chip shortage, and many people are looking at used cars instead. If you’re shopping for a used car and feeling rushed to buy a car before you can fully check it out — stop! Some used cars may have flood damage.

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Money & Credit

Scammers are tricking more people into buying gift cards

According to the newest Data Spotlight, 40,000 people reported losing a whopping $148 million in gift cards to scammers during the first nine months of 2021. Those are staggering numbers which have increased each year for the past several years. Since 2018, gift cards have been the most frequently reported payment method for fraud. But which gift card brand do scammers ask people to buy, and lose the most money on? Google Play, Apple, eBay, and Walmart cards remain popular with scammers. But this year, Target gift cards are scammers’ top choice.

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Money & Credit

Combatting fraud and other consumer problems in Black communities

A recent FTC staff report shows what we’ve known for some time — that different communities report to the FTC about different concerns. Today, we’re highlighting some of the scams and other consumer problems that affect people living in majority Black communities.

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Money & Credit

Avoiding a money mule scam

Scammers are looking for people to help them move stolen money. They visit dating, job search, and other sites, telling fake stories, and making up reasons to send you money. Then they tell you to send the money to someone else. If you help a scammer move stolen money — even if you didn’t know it was stolen — you could get into legal trouble.

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Money & Credit

Celebrate Hanukkah without the scams

Hanukkah is all about spending time with loved ones, celebrating traditions, and, for many, giving gifts. So, as you start preparing for all eight nights, here are some things you can do to avoid scammers when shopping online:

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Money & Credit

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