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


  • Could a Bad Credit Score Make You Homeless?Column, Press, Blog

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    A landlord in San Francisco recently wrote letters to tenants that said if their FICO credit score was below 725 or they made less than $100,000 a year, they would have to move out. A media dust-up ensued and the landlord retracted the letter. While this is an extreme case, it just goes to show that good credit is increasingly linked to your ability to secure housing. Tight Market for U.S. Rentals The National Low […]

  • Privacy and security

    Data Security: Can Corporations Protect Us From Hackers?Column, Data Security, Blog

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    Gregg Steinhafel’s ouster at Target this week was a major C-Suite casualty in corporate America’s war on hackers. Sales took a major nosedive after the retailer’s big data security breach hit the news last December, with fourth-quarter profits down 46%. So what’s a CEO to do? First of all, if it seems a little overblown to blame Target’s poor performance of late solely on the breach, I’d tend to agree with you. There was the […]

  • Parents

    A Parent’s Guide to Stopping Child Identity TheftColumn, Blog, Identity Theft

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    Mother’s Day and Father’s Day aren’t only boons to the greeting card business—for parents they provide a welcome break, a chance to sleep in and take it easy, and spend some quality time thinking about… child identity theft. Huh? OK, maybe you aren’t kicking back in your down-time and thinking about the finer points of child identity theft. But if you haven’t been paying much attention to the growing number of horror stories featuring starry-eyed […]

  • Could Your Mother’s Online Sharing Cost You Big Time?Column, Blog, Identity Theft

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    With Mother’s Day just around the corner, it’s quite natural to reflect upon the innumerable ways our mothers have made us the men and women we are today. But while lost in that reverie, consider this: In her love for you and your family, and her desire to share online your joys and accomplishments with friends and the world at large, could your mom be putting you in harm’s way? There are many ways our […]

  • Data Breaches: Why Assigning Blame Is a Zero-Sum GameColumn, Data Security, Blog, Personal Finance

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    Today’s data breaches are like a game of musical chairs: sooner or later, you’ll have to face the music. Last year was bad for data security: More than 800 million records containing sensitive consumer data were exposed. News of breaches keeps rolling in. Identity theft—which had been considered a crass scare tactic conjured up by creative marketing departments to sell solutions to a non-problem – has become the third certainty in life, alongside death and […]

  • The 4 Laziest Ways to Improve Your Credit ScoreColumn, Blog, Personal Finance

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    There are people out there who expend a lot of energy in the quest for a totally meaningless perfect credit score, which I’ve written about elsewhere. Most people know it’s important to have good credit, but they don’t want to spend too much time worrying about it. The good news is that you can be pretty lazy and still improve your credit. The difference between having good credit (generally from 700-749) and bad credit (anything […]

  • Student Loans: Could Your Co-signer Kill Your Credit?student loans, Blog

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    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released a report by Rohit Chopra that highlighted an important issue in the student loan landscape. Student loans are going into default because a co-signer dies or files for bankruptcy, and it’s happening sometimes faster than borrowers can take action. Till death when you come apart? The CFPB reported receiving ongoing complaints from borrowers who find out upon the death of their co-signer (usually a parent or grandparent) that a […]

  • AOL: Hacked or Spoofed, It’s Time to Check Your Sent FolderData Security, Blog

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    The latest security alert online seems to be the work of a Walking Dead fan. Twitter is lighting up with users complaining that long-closed AOL accounts recently came back to life, with phishing emails spreading like a zombie epidemic. #AOLHacked is trending on Twitter as people are letting their followers know about the phishing emails, and venting their frustration. Hacked. Sorry. I didn't do it. #AOL #AOLHacked — Konii Thomas (@KoniiThomas) April 22, 2014 At […]

  • The HR Decision that Could Sink Your BusinessColumn, Blog

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    Your human resources department plays a vital role in how your company gets things done. It makes sure you are staffed properly, that benefits are administered and many other important obligations are met in a timely manner. Everyone knows the pitfalls of the HR department. If they recruit a bad player, it can hurt morale, but it won’t necessarily sink the ship. There is, however, an HR-related obligation that, if left unmet, can take a […]

  • The 5 Dumbest Credit MistakesColumn, Blog, Personal Finance

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    Several years ago, I watched in amazement when the CEO of a major identity theft protection firm, appeared in a series of commercials waving his Social Security card in the air, parading his Social Security number on a billboard through heavily populated urban areas and screaming his SSN through a bullhorn as a challenge to those who believed that he couldn’t protect it. As a result, he couldn’t protect it and became a 13-time victim […]

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