September 14, 2008 |
Everyone is afraid of identity theft. It seems as if every couple of days there are new reports of Social Security numbers and other sensitive information stolen, lost or leaked. Just last week Countrywide Financial, which is now owned by Bank of America, said it would provide two years of free credit monitoring for customers whose confidential data were allegedly stolen by a former employee. But should you spend money to buy services that promise to protect you from identity theft?
March 14, 2010 |
Identity theft may be the financial world's equivalent of a staph infection. Just when you thought you had a handle on protecting your identity from criminals, the crime has morphed into something new and far more toxic. It has become relatively easy to find and combat traditional identity theft, which involves a stranger snatching your Social Security number and other identifying information to apply for credit in your name. You simply request free copies of your credit report every three months and review them for accuracy.
March 2, 2010 |
The medical records of more than 18,000 patients of at least five Torrance doctors were potentially accessed by cyber-thieves on a single day in September, but this is probably the first you're hearing of it. Although a new federal law requiring greater disclosure of medical-data security breaches was passed a year ago, it wasn't until recently that the Department of Health and Human Services began posting specific incidents online. And the feds aren't exactly being generous with details about people's confidential medical info being hacked or going astray.
October 14, 2012 |
Despite the fear of identity theft and threats from computer viruses, the use of public wireless Internet has jumped by 240% in the last 12 months, a new survey has found. The top log-in sites were coffee shops and restaurants (75%), hotels (54%) and airports (38%), according to an online survey of 377 people by the nonprofit Identity Theft Resource Center in partnership with Private Wifi, a firm that develops online protection software. Still, Internet users are aware of the risks of using public Wi-Fi.
March 5, 2006 |
The Internal Revenue Service may be holding a tax refund for you, but if you're getting e-mails about it, they're not from the IRS. It's a scam. Tax officials said last week that they had discovered a permutation of an identity theft scheme that the agency originally warned about in November. In this one, individuals get a brief e-mail notifying them that they're due a $63.80 refund. The recipient is urged to click on a link to fill out a claim form.
June 5, 2011 |
Dear Liz: I am 22, single, work full time and have no outstanding debts. I have $18,000 in a savings account and am contributing 15% of my paycheck to a 401(k). How do I invest my savings to get a better return? I've been looking into certificates of deposit, money market accounts, IRAs and Roth IRAs, but don't know enough to start. Answer: Let's first get clear on some terminology. CDs and money markets are types of investments, while IRAs and Roth IRAs are types of accounts — specifically, they're retirement accounts.