MoneyWisdom Blog

Scam Alert: Things the IRS Will Never Do

Posted by MoneyWisdom Newsletter on Jan 18, 2019 12:19:42 PM

Tax season is here, and it’s stressful enough without the threatening and aggressive tactics of scammers impersonating the IRS. In recent years, thousands of people have lost substantial amounts of money, as well as precious personal information, to tax scams. Although you may think you’re too savvy to fall victim, it’s important to remember that every year, criminals find new and creative ways to cheat you out of your money and identity.

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Topics: scams, Taxes, security

6 Benefits to Using a Password Manager

Posted by Hanscom Federal Credit Union on Jan 6, 2019 8:13:00 AM

While it might not seem like there is much the average person can do to stop ID theft from happening, there are steps individuals can take to minimize personal risk. One of the most practical ones? Ditch the jot-it-down-on-a-notepad method of password tracking in favor of a secure software application that generates and stores passwords on your behalf. In other words, get yourself a password manager, stat.

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Topics: security, scams

Why You Should Avoid Car Title Loans

Posted by Diana Burrell on Sep 19, 2018 9:19:00 AM

When 21-year-old Ryan learned a friend needed some cash to help his mother out, Ryan did what a good friend would do…he lent his friend the money. The problem arose when Ryan’s father, John, found out how his son had gotten the money.

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Topics: Loans, scams, Debt

How to Protect Your Computer From Malware

Posted by Diana Burrell on Sep 11, 2018 2:40:32 PM

Recently two of our members reported unauthorized charges on their Hanscom Federal Credit Union credit cards. Both members stated their cards had been compromised when they clicked on a pop-up ad that appeared after they’d completed a survey on a third-party web site. The pop-up ads offered a choice of three “free prizes” when the member paid a shipping and handling fee. What neither member realized is they were also signing up for ongoing subscriptions of products, which would be charged to their credit cards each month.

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Topics: scams, Credit Card, security

Beware the Amazon Prime Day Scam

Posted by Diana Burrell on Jul 13, 2018 2:10:47 PM

Amazon Prime Day starts on July 16, where you can take advantage of deals galore on their website. Unfortunately, it's prime week for phishers, who are already hard at work emailing scams galore to take advantage of you. Here's how these bottom-feeders are operating this year and how you can protect yourself from their nefarious schemes.

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Topics: scams

Scam Alert: Beware of the Fake IRS Refund Check

Posted by Diana Burrell on Mar 26, 2018 7:00:00 AM

It’s tax season and a new scam involving stolen data from tax professionals, fraudulent tax filings, and erroneous checking account deposits has law enforcement and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on high alert.

Here’s how the scam works and what to do if a mysterious tax refund appears in your checking account or mailbox.

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Topics: scams, Checking, security

Online Dating Scams: Breaking the Heart and the Bank

Posted by Sandra Quadros Bowles on Feb 5, 2018 1:09:01 PM

She opens her messages from the online dating site and her heart skips a beat.

Someone wants to meet her. But not just any man. He is the man of her dreams, dreams sparked the first time she watched An Officer and A Gentleman and enhanced by a decade of Lifetime movie-watching.

In his photo, he sports a military uniform and is dashing, clean cut, a man of action.

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Topics: scams, security

Owner beware: Scammers target small businesses with these schemes

Posted by Hanscom Federal Credit Union on Dec 30, 2017 7:00:00 AM

The three-letter message on the caller ID strikes fear in any American’s heart: IRS. You pick up the phone, nervously, to hear a somber voice with an unsettling message.

“This is the IRS,’’ the voice intones, confirming the caller ID information. Adjustments have been made to your tax account and an immediate payment is due, the caller is informed. Payment must be made over the phone by cash, wire or services, such as MoneyGram. Even iTunes gift cards will suffice. If not, police will be at your location within an hour.

Reading about such an incident should trigger internal alarm bells. This kind of

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Topics: scams, security, Business

Used Car Shopping: How to Spot a Previously-Flooded Vehicle

Posted by Bill Burpeau on Sep 13, 2017 1:15:00 PM

With the flood waters of hurricanes Harvey and Irma now easing, a new kind of flood is taking place. It’s created by a wave of waterlogged cars that are heading to the scrap yard. While it may seem that a car should be salvageable once it dries out, that is not the case. Water damage corrodes the mechanics of a vehicle, making it unsafe to drive.

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Topics: Cars, scams

Top Precautions to Take Following the Equifax Hack

Posted by MaryJo Kurtz on Sep 8, 2017 1:21:43 PM

On September 7, consumer reporting agency Equifax announced that hackers gained unauthorized access to its data files. As many as 143 million people, mostly in the United States, are potentially impacted by this breach. The company also identified criminal access to information involving residents of the United Kingdom and Canada, adding that no other countries were affected.

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Topics: security, scams

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