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Blogs and article by Adam K Levin about credit, identity theft, data security, and consumer protection.


  • How to Avoid Used Car Loan GotchasFinancial Literacy, Personal Finance

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    Used cars have always appealed to the budget-conscious shoppers because of their low prices, but there’s always been a drawback — used car loans. Until recently, bank loans for used cars were tricky to get, and were much more expensive than new car loans. But that’s changing. With car dealers successfully edging banks out of many new car loans, banks have turned their attention to the used car market. Today, more than half of used […]

  • How College Students Can Protect Themselves From Identity TheftEducation, Identity Theft

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    College students are prime targets for identity thieves. They are busy and distracted, and rarely are actively engaged in managing their credit. And they are usually required to fill out a flurry of paperwork as school begins that includes the most sensitive information, such as Social Security numbers. In additional to financial aid, enrollment forms or rental documents, many will encounter credit card applications for the first time, not to mention creation of various computer […]

  • The Socially Transmitted Disease That Has No Cure: Identity TheftColumn, Blog

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    Whether you are new to college, single and dating or newly divorced (because you panicked and confessed when news of the Ashley Madison hack hit the media), I’ll bet there is at least one socially transmitted disease you haven’t started worrying about: identity theft. If you use Facebook, you’re making easy work for identity thieves. The same goes for the whole cosmos of social media whether you favor Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, or […]

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    How to Keep Your Baby From Ruining Your CreditFinancial Literacy, Personal Finance

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    They look so innocent (and they are) when they’re sleeping. But if you’re a new parent, you’d probably see that you look exhausted (if you actually had the time and energy to check a mirror). You’re totally absorbed in trying to take care of this tiny person, and you’re far too tired to do your best thinking. Which is why a little one can make a big mess of your credit. Sleep deprivation (yours and theirs) […]

  • Are We One Step Closer to Your Facebook Friends Impacting Your Credit?credit, Technology

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    The U.S. patent office granted Facebook an updated patent on technology that would allow lenders to evaluate loan applicants based on their social network connections, reports VentureBeat. The technology tracks how closely (or not) people are connected. The technology is employed to minimize spam (people sending messages to those with whom they have no relationship) or prevent people from showing up in strangers’ search results, according to the “summary of invention” section of the patent. […]

  • The Most Dangerous Identity Theft ThreatColumn, Blog

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    Last weekend, TheUpshot published the most dangerous identity theft threat: the non-expert’s tendency to underestimate the magnitude of problem. The piece in question argued that the consequences of most identity theft have been exaggerated (by identity theft experts like me), and that, “only a tiny number of people exposed by leaks end up paying any costs.” The main source for TheUpshot’s argument seems to be the 2015 Identity Fraud Report (covering data from 2014) published […]

  • Not So FAFSA: How to Avoid a Student Aid ScamColumn, Blog

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    As July melts into August, many college-age students are once again turning their thoughts (if they haven’t done so already) to that beast of complexity, the FAFSA form – which students must fill out if they want to receive financial aid. While there are many reputable companies that help prepare FAFSA forms, there are a number of parasites out there as well. Filling out the FAFSA is about as much fun as Thanksgiving dinner table […]

  • 10 Industries That Could Profit From the Ashley Madison HackHumor, Technology

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    The hackers who broke into AshleyMadison.com, a meeting place for people seeking extra-marital affairs, recently made good on their threat, exposing their first hostage-victim, a Massachusetts man. There are 37 million more quivering masses of flesh where he came from, and the people behind the compromise have vowed to release all of their customer information — including sexual fantasies — unless Avid Life Entertainment kills Ashley Madison and Established Men (a site where women can […]

  • 9 Summer Scams and How You Can Avoid ThemColumn, Blog

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    Summer is a time for sun, fun, exploration and relaxation. Unfortunately, as we unwind there are those who gear up to take advantage of our moments of diversion and distraction. Scammers love summer, too. Here are a few summer scams that can turn a much-needed break from work into a break-the-bank moment or make for a truly unhappy holiday, and some simple tips to avoid getting got. 1. The Front Desk Scam You arrive late […]

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    5 Common Credit Score KillersFinancial Literacy, Personal Finance

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    Having a good credit score can help you save a lot of money over your lifetime, but many people find themselves with scores lower than they’d like because they don’t know how much everyday things can hurt their scores. Of course, once you know what those things are, you’re better equipped to improve your credit. Here are five common things that can hurt your credit: 1. High Credit Card Balances One of the most influential factors […]

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