social security – How To Occupy http://howtooccupy.org/ Mon, 14 Mar 2022 05:29:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://howtooccupy.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/icon.png social security – How To Occupy http://howtooccupy.org/ 32 32 Legal aid focuses on consumer protection | News, Sports, Jobs https://howtooccupy.org/legal-aid-focuses-on-consumer-protection-news-sports-jobs/ Mon, 14 Mar 2022 05:29:35 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/legal-aid-focuses-on-consumer-protection-news-sports-jobs/ A staff member at a nonprofit law firm is warning Ohio consumers to be savvy when it comes to sales pitches that sound too good to be true. In recognition of the recent National Consumer Protection Week, Rachel Nader, Advocacy Director for Community Legal Aid, recently shared some advice for residents, warning them […]]]>

A staff member at a nonprofit law firm is warning Ohio consumers to be savvy when it comes to sales pitches that sound too good to be true.

In recognition of the recent National Consumer Protection Week, Rachel Nader, Advocacy Director for Community Legal Aid, recently shared some advice for residents, warning them to monitor their bank account activity and any fluctuations in their credit reports.

“Often a person doesn’t know they are a victim of identity theft or fraud until they have trouble opening a credit account,” Nader said in a recent statement. Press. “By then, significant damage has already been done.”

Community Legal Aid is a 501(c)3 nonprofit law firm that serves the legal needs of low-income people living in eight counties in central and northeastern Ohio, including Columbiana, Mahoning, and Trumbull .

Reviewing credit reports, Nader said, also helps consumers catch inaccurate information that may have landed on their file. Nader pointed out that it’s a consumer’s legal right to dispute items on credit reports. She noted that Ohioans can access these reports for free by visiting the website www.annualcreditreport.com.

Legal Aid staff also note that there has been an increase in fraudulent activity and scams. Most alarming is the growing number of “identity theft scams,” the press release says, where a caller says they are from a government agency, such as the IRS, Social Security or the Department of Work and Family of Ohio. Scammers may have concocted a fake website or phone number to legitimize their claims.

“Fraudsters prey on victims’ worst fears, threatening them with the worst possible scenario, such as jail, if they don’t comply with their demands,” Nader said.

In reality, she said, government agencies use regular mail and do not call, text or email to make these types of threats.

Therefore, she said consumers should not provide personal or account information. Instead, they are advised to hang up and, if in doubt, call the official agency number to verify the call.

In addition to “identity theft scams,” consumers can fall victim to “rescue scams” ​​that promise to help someone in trouble but offer no real service or value. This is especially common for people facing foreclosure, owing back taxes, or struggling with credit card debt.

“Ohioans should talk to an attorney before paying for services that promise to help them avoid foreclosure or get rid of debt,” Nader said, noting that Legal Aid attorneys offer this type of service.

Finally, Nader said consumers should know and enforce their legal debt rights. The nonprofit has seen an increase in credit card lawsuits in recent months, noting that creditors are stepping up collection efforts as the pandemic begins to wane, she said.

“If someone is being sued for consumer debt, it’s important to actively participate in the legal process,” Nader said, noting that there can be effective legal defenses and it’s unwise to ignore a lawsuit. in justice.

FOR YOUR INFORMATION …

• Ohioans struggling with debt can find information about legal solutions, such as bankruptcy, by visiting the organization’s website at www.communitylegalaid.org/debt. Further help may be available through their Financial Wellness Workshop, which gives qualified applicants the opportunity to speak to a lawyer for advice on their situation. To request assistance, call the helpline at 800-998-9454 or apply online at www.communitylegalaid.org/apply.

• Victims of impersonation or scams should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office by calling toll-free 800-282-0515 or visiting them on the web at www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov /.



Today’s breaking news and more to your inbox









]]>
US Attorney’s Office Launches National Consumer Protection Week | USAO-WDNC https://howtooccupy.org/us-attorneys-office-launches-national-consumer-protection-week-usao-wdnc/ Mon, 07 Mar 2022 12:45:32 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/us-attorneys-office-launches-national-consumer-protection-week-usao-wdnc/ CHARLOTTE, North Carolina — U.S. Attorney Dena J. King today announced that the U.S. Attorney’s Office is joining a range of government, nonprofit, and private organizations to raise awareness of widespread and emerging scams during National Consumer Protection Week. “National Consumer Protection Week is an opportunity to join forces with public and private agencies to […]]]>

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina — U.S. Attorney Dena J. King today announced that the U.S. Attorney’s Office is joining a range of government, nonprofit, and private organizations to raise awareness of widespread and emerging scams during National Consumer Protection Week.

“National Consumer Protection Week is an opportunity to join forces with public and private agencies to amplify the message against sinister scams and educate the public on how to identify scams and avoid fall prey to scammers,” U.S. Attorney King said. “The best way to protect yourself is to learn how to spot a scam and what to do if you are contacted by a scammer. We also encourage everyone to report suspected fraudulent schemes to help us track emerging scams and warn others.

According to Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in 2021, North Carolina residents submitted more than 64,000 fraud reports totaling $93 million in losses, compared to $74 million in 2020. The top categories of fraud reported were for imposters, online shopping, sweepstakes and lotteries, and internet services, among others. .

Spot the four signs of a scam can prevent consumers from falling victim to it. The signs are:

  1. Fraudsters pretend to be affiliated with a widely known organization, such as a government entity, law enforcement agency, utility company, or charity.
  2. The scammers claim that there is an imminent problem that requires immediate attention. For example, they claim that you or a loved one have legal or financial problems, your computer is infected with a virus, or your bank account has been locked.
  3. You are forced to take immediate action, including paying a fine or settling a debt to avoid arrest, paying for computer repairs to restore your data, logging into your account using a link provided, or pay a fee in order to receive lottery winnings.
  4. Scammers ask you to pay using a specific payment method, such as a gift card, prepaid debit card, wire transfer, or instant money transfer.

To avoid being scammed, consumers are encouraged to:

  1. Ignore unknown callers and block unwanted numbers and SMS.
  2. Do not open or reply to suspicious emails and do not click on suspicious links.
  3. Do not give out personal or financial information such as name, date of birth, social security number, bank account, or credit card number.
  4. Do not succumb to pressure tactics urging you to act immediately. Take your time to verify the legitimacy of the source and do your own research.
  5. Don’t pay using an unusual payment method such as wire transfers, instant money transfers, internet currency, or gift cards, or use your bank account to cash a check that you is sent by post.
  6. If you think you’ve been contacted by a scammer, tell a trusted family member, friend or neighbor.

It is equally important that consumers do their part to help us identify existing or emerging scams and help warn others. If you are scammed or believe you have been contacted by a scammer, report the fraud to your local police and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at ic3.gov.

To visit PNLT for a list of events throughout the week and for additional information on how to avoid scams.

]]>
Washingtonians impacted by 2021 T-Mobile data breach – Dailyfly.com Lewis-Clark Valley Community https://howtooccupy.org/washingtonians-impacted-by-2021-t-mobile-data-breach-dailyfly-com-lewis-clark-valley-community/ Sun, 06 Mar 2022 22:05:49 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/washingtonians-impacted-by-2021-t-mobile-data-breach-dailyfly-com-lewis-clark-valley-community/ Washington State Attorney General’s Office OLYMPIA — Attorney General Bob Ferguson urges all Washingtonians who believe they were affected by the data breach announced by T-Mobile in August 2021 to take appropriate steps to protect their personal information […]]]>












Washington State Attorney General’s Office




OLYMPIA — Attorney General Bob Ferguson urges all Washingtonians who believe they were affected by the data breach announced by T-Mobile in August 2021 to take appropriate steps to protect their personal information from identity theft.

The data breach affected approximately 2 million Washingtonians.

“Data breaches continue to be a growing threat to Washingtonians,” Ferguson said. “We want to make sure Washingtonians have the tools they need to protect themselves in the wake of a data breach.”

On August 17, 2021, T-Mobile reported a massive data breach compromising the sensitive personal information of millions of current, former and potential T-Mobile customers. The breach affected more than 50 million people nationwide. Millions of people have had their names, dates of birth, social security numbers and driver’s license information compromised.

Recently, a large subset of the information compromised in the breach was for sale on the “dark web” – a hidden part of the internet where cybercriminals buy, sell and track personal information. Many people have since received alerts through various identity theft protection services advising them that their information has been found online in connection with the breach, confirming that those affected are at increased risk of identity theft.

Ferguson urges anyone who believes they were part of the August 2021 T-Mobile data breach to take the following steps to protect themselves:

  • Watch your credit. Credit monitoring services track your credit report and alert you whenever a change is made, such as a new account or a large purchase. Most services will notify you within 24 hours of any changes to your credit report.
  • Consider placing a free credit freeze on your credit report. Identity thieves will not be able to open a new credit account in your name while the freeze is in place. You can place a credit freeze by contacting each of the three major credit bureaus:
  • Place a fraud alert on your credit report. A fraud alert tells lenders and creditors to take extra steps to verify your identity before issuing credit. You can place a fraud alert by contacting any of the three major credit bureaus.
  • Additional Resources. If you think you’ve been the victim of identity theft, go to voldidentite.gov for help on how to report it and recover from it. Washingtonians can also visit https://www.atg.wa.gov/guardit.aspx for more information.









90










 















]]>
You may have received your 2021 tax refund https://howtooccupy.org/you-may-have-received-your-2021-tax-refund/ Sun, 27 Feb 2022 20:44:42 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/you-may-have-received-your-2021-tax-refund/ If you filed your taxes early and electronically, you may have already received your refund, … [+] according to tax. Getty If you filed your 2021 tax return early online, opted for direct deposit to your bank account, and the IRS found no “issues” with your return, check your bank account – you can see […]]]>

If you filed your 2021 tax return early online, opted for direct deposit to your bank account, and the IRS found no “issues” with your return, check your bank account – you can see your refund deposit. This is according to a February 24, 2022 IRS press release, “Tax Time Guide: Use the ‘Where’s My Refund?’ IRS2Go tool or app to easily check tax refund status. »

If you filed earlier but claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit, the refund should arrive around March 1.

If you’re checking your bank account but have questions about where your refund is, there are two IRS sites that can help: Where’s my refund? and IRS2Go.

Tax refund details

If you go to Where’s my refund? page on IRS.gov, you can find details about your refund. You will need your Social Security Number or ITIN (Individual Tax Identification Number), as well as your filing status (single, married filing jointly, head of household, etc.) and the exact amount of your declaration.

Once you have entered this information online, you can view the status of your refund (return received, refund approved, refund sent). The IRS notes, “If you filed a complete and accurate tax return, your refund should be issued within 21 days of the date it was received. However, processing may take longer under certain circumstances.

IRS2Go is the official IRS mobile app. You can use the app to check the status of a tax refund. (If you need to make a payment, you can access IRS Direct Pay through the app.)

EITC and ACTC

As a reminder, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) aims to offer tax relief to taxpayers with low or average incomes. You can check if you qualify by using the EITC wizard on IRS.gov.

The additional child tax credit, according to the IRS, is “a credit you may be able to take if you are unable to claim the full amount of the [Child Tax Credit].”

You don’t normally file a tax return?

Here’s another important reminder: if you don’t normally need to file a tax return, but you have children, you must file a return in order to get child-related tax credits, such as the child tax and the child care and dependent care credit. .

The child tax credit allows a taxpayer to receive up to $3,600 for each child aged 5 and under and $3,000 for each child aged 6 to 17 (ages are determined at the end of 2021). No income is necessary to claim the credit, but the qualifying child must have a Social Security number.

The child and dependent care credit allows a taxpayer to get a credit of up to $4,000 for one eligible person and up to $8,000 for two or more eligible people, depending on eligible expenses for the care of children or dependents while the taxpayer was working or looking for work. . For details, see IRS Publication 503.

Need help filling out your declarations?

The IRS offers two important resources to help file accurate tax returns.

The Tax Time Guide provides important information about tax changes and how they affect taxpayers, while Publication 17, “Your Federal Personal Income Tax,” is a 140-page guide with explanations and examples for 2021 tax returns.

Questions?

To follow the topics I cover, be sure to to follow me on forbes.com (and if you want to subscribe, check the red box in the top right). Write to me at forbes@juliejason.com. Include your city and state and mention that you are a forbes.com reader. While it’s impossible to answer every question, every email is read and reviewed and may lead to discussion in a future article.

]]>
Woman used stolen license to steal concessions https://howtooccupy.org/woman-used-stolen-license-to-steal-concessions/ Tue, 15 Feb 2022 00:07:00 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/woman-used-stolen-license-to-steal-concessions/ The suspect who allegedly stole vehicles from multiple Warren dealerships is described as a burly black woman between the ages of 25 and 35, Warren Police Lt. David Kriss said. Photo courtesy of the Warren Police Department Advertising WARREN — A woman who allegedly stole cars from several Detroit metro dealerships recently punched a dealership […]]]>

The suspect who allegedly stole vehicles from multiple Warren dealerships is described as a burly black woman between the ages of 25 and 35, Warren Police Lt. David Kriss said.

Photo courtesy of the Warren Police Department

Advertising

WARREN — A woman who allegedly stole cars from several Detroit metro dealerships recently punched a dealership in Warren.

According to Warren Police Lt. David Kriss, the woman – who was using a stolen driver’s license – allegedly stole vehicles from M-53 Auto Sales in September and Grimaldi Auto Sales in November. On February 11, the department received reports of a vehicle being stolen from Kal’s Auto Sales.

Although there were three reports to Warren, Kriss believes other jurisdictions may have reports of the same woman stealing vehicles.

In all three cases, the suspect presented a Michigan driver’s license before being allowed to take a test drive. The license was reported stolen on July 6, 2021, and the same victim name keeps coming up when vehicles are stolen, Kriss said.

Christine Istefan, finance manager at Kal’s Auto Sales, said the woman arrived in a silver old Chevrolet Impala. The suspect told the dealer that she was interested in their vehicles and wanted to see one.

But before she was allowed to take a test drive, the suspect was told she would have to run her credit file. Most of the information was on the driver’s license, but when asked for her social security number, the suspect refused to give it, Istefan said.

The suspect was allowed to test drive a black 2018 Chevrolet Impala LT, despite being told she couldn’t go further than two miles. Once she had the keys, she waved the first car off before following her into the dealership’s vehicle.

“She was very convincing, she acted like she really needed a car,” Istefan said.

The dealership asks anyone who might buy a 2018 Impala to contact them to verify the vehicle identification number.

The woman is described as black, stout and between the ages of 25 and 35, Kriss said.

The theft is currently under investigation.

Anyone with information about the robberies or the suspect involved can contact Warren Detectives at (586) 574-4810.

Contact Brian Wells at (248) 291-7637 or bwells@candgnews.com.

Advertising

]]>
Who Qualifies for the Child Tax Credit and What It Means This Tax Season https://howtooccupy.org/who-qualifies-for-the-child-tax-credit-and-what-it-means-this-tax-season/ Sat, 05 Feb 2022 13:00:24 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/who-qualifies-for-the-child-tax-credit-and-what-it-means-this-tax-season/ If you are eligible and have not opted out, you likely received child tax credit advance payments in 2021. Sarah Tew/CNET Each tax season brings its own changes and adjustments, and 2022 is no different. A big difference for 2021 tax returns is the expansion child tax creditwhich will increase tax refunds for many families […]]]>

If you are eligible and have not opted out, you likely received child tax credit advance payments in 2021.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Each tax season brings its own changes and adjustments, and 2022 is no different. A big difference for 2021 tax returns is the expansion child tax creditwhich will increase tax refunds for many families this year.

If you have children and are preparing your tax returns, you will need to know the details of this year’s child tax credit in order to file your taxes correctly and maximize the amount of your tax refund.

This year’s improved child tax credit results from the passage of the American Rescue Act last March. The legislation increased the amount of money credited to families from $2,000 per child to $3,600 for children under age 6 and $3,000 for children up to age 17 (previous limit was 16). ). The change also makes the entire credit refundable, instead of 70%.

The expansion of the child tax credit has also introduced monthly advance payments. Half of the money – up to $300 per month per child – was distributed to eligible families who did not opt ​​out using the IRS Child Tax Credit Portal in 2021.

Most families with children 17 and under are eligible for the Child Tax Credit. Read on to find out how to find out if you’re eligible, how to calculate your tax credit, and how prepayments in 2021 will affect your tax refund this year.

Are you eligible for the child tax credit?

More … than 96% of families with children 17 and under are eligible for the child tax credit. The IRS’ Interactive Eligibility Assistant lets families quickly find out if they’re eligible by answering a a few quick questions.

ctc-payment-info

Your IRS tax records page will show the child tax credit prepayment amount.

Screenshot IRS.com

The IRS offers several other online tools for your taxes this year, but the most useful ones require a online account with the IRS who uses facial recognition via ID.me for registration. Once your application is confirmed, you will have access to many of your tax records, including information about your child tax credit and advance payments in 2021.

From the IRS account home page, click “View Tax Records” in the Records section. You’ll land on a page that shows your most recent tax return, your child tax credit advance payments for 2021, and your stimulus payments (called “economic impact payments”) for the year.

Parents who received child tax credit advance payments should also have received IRS Letter 6419 confirming the amount of payments and the number of eligible children. You can use the tax records from your IRS account online to confirm that your letter is correct.

Does my income affect my child tax credit?

Your adjusted gross income (AGI) can change the amount of your child tax credit. If you earn $75,000 or less filing individually, or $150,000 or less as a married spouse, you will receive the maximum child tax credit – $3,600 for children 6 and under, $3,000 for children up to 17 years old.

For every $20 of AGI above these limits, the child tax credit is reduced by $1 until the amount reaches $2,000. The child tax credit remains at $2,000 for single filers earning between $107,000 and $200,000 and married filers earning between $182,000 and $400,000. The credit starts to decrease again at the same level above these amounts, giving a credit of $0 for those who earn $240,000 and more filing individually or $440,000 married filing jointly.

Simplify calculations using CNET Child Tax Credit Calculator to determine the amount of your child tax credit.


Now Playing:
Look at this:

Child tax credit: everything we know


4:17

What if I had a new child in 2021?

If you had a new baby in 2021 or brought a new eligible child into your family, they are certainly eligible to be included in the child tax credit when you file your taxes this year. Add their information to IRS Form 1040 and check the “qualifies for child tax credit” box. Then include them with your number of eligible children on IRS Form 8812.

An important note: In addition to being 17 or younger, children must have valid Social Security numbers in order to be eligible for the Child Tax Credit.

How do I account for installments on my 2021 tax return?

The IRS has released a lengthy explanation on how to handle your child tax credit advance payments when filing your 2021 tax return. We’ll break it down to make it easier:

These steps will help you “reconcile” your child tax credit and get the remaining half of the money you didn’t receive up front.

If you elected not to receive advance child tax credit payments, you will still need to complete Form 8812 to claim your credit. You will simply not enter any amount for prepayments on line 14f. You will receive the full amount of your Eligible Child Tax Credit with your 2021 tax refund.

What happens if I received too much money in advance of child tax credit payments?

Although unlikely, if your income changed dramatically in 2021 or your family situation changed the number of eligible children living with you last year, the IRS may have sent you too much money. ahead of child tax credit payments. So do you have to pay that money back?

In typical IRS terms, “maybe”. It all depends on your AGI and whether you qualify for “refund protection”. Single filers earning $40,000 or less, heads of household filers earning $50,000 or less, and married joint filers earning $60,000 or less will not have to repay any additional funds they received through child tax credit advance payments.

Refund protection is phased out as income increases, to a maximum of $80,000 for single filers, $100,000 for heads of household filing, and $120,000 for married filers jointly. If you have earned more than these limits, yes, you must repay the full amount of additional Child Advance Tax Credit you received. This doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t get a refund – your refund may just be reduced by that extra Child Tax Credit money.

For those who earn between the maximum and minimum amounts for refund protection, they will have to repay some of the extra money. The exact percentage of money to be repaid can be calculated using the formula in question H7 of the IRA Reconciling Your Advance Child Tax Credits FAQ.

]]>
Finance firm linked to Summit Contracting under fire from federal watchdog https://howtooccupy.org/finance-firm-linked-to-summit-contracting-under-fire-from-federal-watchdog/ Sat, 05 Feb 2022 00:14:00 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/finance-firm-linked-to-summit-contracting-under-fire-from-federal-watchdog/ BROWN COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) – Viewers continue to ask questions about what they should do in the event of fraudulent loans being taken out in their name from a now-shuttered outsourcing business. As we previously reported, the former owners and vendors of Summit Contracting Inc. – Chad Schampers, Gina Schampers, Nate Smith and Jeffrey O’Brien […]]]>

BROWN COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) – Viewers continue to ask questions about what they should do in the event of fraudulent loans being taken out in their name from a now-shuttered outsourcing business.

As we previously reported, the former owners and vendors of Summit Contracting Inc. – Chad Schampers, Gina Schampers, Nate Smith and Jeffrey O’Brien – have been indicted in federal court on nearly a dozen charges of electronic and bank fraud.

Federal prosecutors say they used “deceptive and misleading” tactics to trick clients into unknowingly taking out large loans for home improvement projects, but kept the money to themselves.

In the three years since we aired First Alert Investigations, customers continue to tell us that these third-party finance companies are still suing them for the money from these fraudulent loans.

We have now discovered that GreenSky, one of those companies named in the Summit Contracting federal indictment, is also in trouble with the government for similar practices across the country.

GreenSky calls itself “leading technology company, as written on their website. It’s not listed as a bank.

Instead, he writes that the company “offers frictionless promotional payment options to consumers,” which facilitates and accelerates the obtaining of a loan.

Government translation? What he calls “negligent practices” this “allow merchants to take advantage of vulnerable customers.

We found this statement in documents issued in the last seven months by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureauthe federal agency that is supposed to make sure that banks, lenders, and finance companies treat you fairly.

Instead, the consumer watchdog agency found that Atlanta, Georgia-headquartered GreenSky violated the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010, according to a Bureau consent order.

Between 2014 and 2019, the Bureau found that GreenSky received at least 6,000 complaints from consumers who said they did not allow a loan application to be submitted.

The 57 page order says “Some consumers first became aware of the loan when they saw their credit report or received billing statements, collection letters and calls” by GreenSky.

How it happened ?

The Consumer Affairs Office says GreenSky used “a completely dematerialized application process”, which allows a contracting company or other trader to easily complete documents electronically, often while sitting in a person’s home, as long as they have information such as name, address and social security number.

Sound familiar?

That’s what Summit Contracting customers have been telling us since 2019.

The article continues under the links

In federal indictments filed against the owners and principal vendor of Summit Contracting, GreenSky was again named, alleging that is what the former De Pere company was doing.

Several clients have told us that they have complained and disputed the payment of these fraudulent loans, but nothing has changed.

In July, the Bureau said enough, ordering GreenSky to refund and reverse up to $9 million for harmed consumers.

The agency also ordered GreenSky to pay a $2.5 million fine and put measures in place to ensure this does not happen again.

In short review on his siteGreenSky writes, “without admitting liability or wrongdoing,” (it) agreed to pay the civil penalty and compensate eligible customers, but the company said that would be capped at $3 million. He also agreed to cancel up to $6 million in loan(s).

This all happened at the end of last summer, but all the local victims who contact us, saying that they are still having problems with GreenSky, also say that they have not received a penny and that their credit rating has dropped significantly.

They hope for a victim-only meeting with local and federal officialsscheduled for Feb. 9 at 5:30 p.m. at the Brown County Sheriff’s Office, will help resolve these issues or at least give them a starting point.

We have contacted GreenSky for comment, but as of the date of this publication have not received a response.

Copyright 2022 WBAY. All rights reserved.

]]>
Data Breach Alert: LendUs, LLC | Console and Associates, PC https://howtooccupy.org/data-breach-alert-lendus-llc-console-and-associates-pc/ Fri, 21 Jan 2022 01:35:50 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/data-breach-alert-lendus-llc-console-and-associates-pc/ In recent news, the mortgage company, LendUS, LLC announced that it has experienced a data security event affecting the personal information of more than 12,000 people. Last year, LendUS, LLC learned that several company employee email accounts had been compromised. Although the details of how an unauthorized party gained access to the employees’ email accounts […]]]>

In recent news, the mortgage company, LendUS, LLC announced that it has experienced a data security event affecting the personal information of more than 12,000 people. Last year, LendUS, LLC learned that several company employee email accounts had been compromised. Although the details of how an unauthorized party gained access to the employees’ email accounts have not yet been released, thanks to a subsequent investigation, the company determined that the names and social security numbers of thousands of customers were contained in various emails and attachments.

A data breach occurs when a hacker or other criminal actor secretly gains access to sensitive consumer information stored on a company’s servers. Often, hackers target organizations that they know rely on outdated or inadequate data security measures. Hackers will often personally use the information obtained through a cyberattack to commit identity theft. However, it is also common for a hacker to sell the data to the highest bidder.

Victims of a data breach are at increased risk of identity theft, although they may not immediately notice suspicious activity. However, given the risks, it is imperative that the parties involved take all necessary steps to protect themselves against identity theft and other potentially significant financial loss.

Anyone receiving a data breach letter from LendUS, LLC has good reason to be concerned. Recently, the number of identity theft crimes has increased dramatically. In many cases, the information needed to steal another’s identity has been obtained through a data breach like this.

Businesses have an obligation to protect consumer data, and if it appears that LendUS, LLC mishandled your data prior to the data breach, you may be eligible for financial compensation through a breach lawsuit. of data.

Can consumers affected by the violation hold LendUS, LLC financially liable?

When you applied for a loan through LendUS, LLC, you provided the company with your personal information. By doing so, you trusted that the company would take your privacy seriously. Surely you assumed that they would take all necessary measures to prevent your sensitive financial and personal identifying information from ending up in the hands of a criminal. However, the LendUS, LLC data breach raises serious questions about the company’s data security measures in place at the time of the breach.

All companies, including LendUS, LLC, have an ethical and legal duty to protect the personal, identifying, financial, and health information of consumers in their possession. Although developing a robust and up-to-date data security system entails additional expense, it is only a cost of doing business in an environment where cyberattacks are common. If a company fails to protect sensitive consumer information, it can be held liable through a data breach class action lawsuit. Of course, data breach laws are complex, news of this data breach is very recent and, unsurprisingly, there is no evidence yet that LendUS, LLC has been negligent in the way it has processed consumer data. However, our data breach lawyers are actively investigating the breach to determine what legal remedies, if any, the affected parties have against LendUS, LLC

If you have questions about your ability to bring a class action lawsuit against LendUS, LLC, it is important that you contact a data breach attorney as soon as possible.

What to do if LendUS, LLC sent you a data breach notification

If you receive a data breach notification from LendUS, LLC in the mail, it means that an unauthorized person may have accessed, viewed, and retained your sensitive personal information. While it’s impossible to say why someone sought your information and what they might do with it, given the risks involved, it’s important that you give the situation the attention it deserves.

Below are some steps you can take to protect yourself against identity theft and other possible financial risks that such a data breach presents:

  • Read the LendUS, LLC data breach letter carefully to determine what information about you was accessible;
  • Make a copy of the letter for your records;
  • Sign up for the free credit monitoring service provided by LendUS, LLC;
  • Change all your passwords and security questions for all online accounts;
  • Enable two-factor authentication, where available;
  • Regularly review your credit card and bank account statements for any signs of suspicious activity;
  • Monitor your credit report for any unexpected changes that could be a sign of identity theft;
  • Contact one of the major credit bureaus to ask them to add a fraud alert to your profile; and
  • Notify your banks and credit card companies of the data breach.

About LendUS, LLC

LendUS, LLC is a mortgage company based in Alamo, California. The company is the result of a merger between two other mortgage companies, RPM Mortgage and American Eagle Mortgage. LendUS, LLC markets itself as an “ultra-attentive” manager and offers a range of residential mortgage products.

According to the most recent data available, LendUS, LLC has approximately 720 employees and generates approximately $80 million in sales.

LendUS, LLC Consumer Data Breach Details

According to the latest press release issued by LendUS, LLC, in early 2021 the company became aware of unusual activity on the email accounts of several employees. In response, LendUS, LLC secured the affected email accounts and initiated an investigation. The investigation revealed that an unauthorized party accessed certain email accounts at various times between February 2, 2021 and March 22, 2021. Although LendUS, LLC was unable to determine which emails or attachments had been viewed, the company determined that the email accounts contained the names and social security numbers of 12,205 people.

LendUS, LLC notes that there is no indication that the unauthorized party has used or intends to use any of the data obtained. On January 19, the company began sending data breach notifications to all affected parties, informing them of the breach and what they can do to protect themselves.

Below is a copy of the original data breach letter issued by LendUS, LLC (the actual notice sent to consumers can be found here):

Dear [Consumer],

LendUS, LLC (“LendUS”) understands the importance of protecting the personal information we maintain. I am writing to inform you of an incident involving some of your personal information. This notice explains the incident, the actions we have taken, and some actions you may consider taking in response.

We have investigated unauthorized access to certain LendUS employee email accounts. Upon learning of the activity, we immediately took action to secure the email accounts and launched an investigation with the assistance of a cybersecurity firm. The investigation determined that an unauthorized person accessed certain accounts at various times between February 2, 2021 and March 22, 2021. The investigation was unable to determine whether emails or exhibits attached accounts had been viewed or downloaded by the unauthorized person; however, we were unable to rule out this possibility. Out of an abundance of caution, we reviewed emails and attachments that could have been viewed or downloaded, and on December 21, 2021, we determined that an email or attachment contained your <>.

We wanted to let you know about this incident and assure you that we are taking it very seriously. We encourage you to remain vigilant by reviewing your account statements and credit reports for any unauthorized activity. If you see any charges or activities that you did not authorize, please contact the financial institution or credit bureau immediately. As an added precaution, we’re giving you a free one-year membership to Equifax CompleteTM Premier, including credit monitoring and fraud alerts. For more information on Identity Theft Prevention and Equifax CompleteTM Premier, including instructions on how to activate your free one-year subscription, please see the pages that follow this letter.

Your trust is important to us, and we regret any inconvenience or concern this incident may cause. To prevent such a situation from happening again, we have implemented additional technical protection and security measures to further improve the security of our IT systems and offer additional security awareness training for our staff. If you have any questions, please call 855-604-1753, Monday through Friday, 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time.

]]>
Former Chick-fil-A employees sentenced for stealing funds | USAO-NDAL https://howtooccupy.org/former-chick-fil-a-employees-sentenced-for-stealing-funds-usao-ndal/ Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:02:07 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/former-chick-fil-a-employees-sentenced-for-stealing-funds-usao-ndal/ BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A federal judge today convicted two former Chick-fil-A employees for their role in a conspiracy to defraud their former employer, U.S. Attorney Prim F. Escalona and U.S. Secret Service Special Agent announced. in charge Patrick M. Davis. U.S. District Judge Madeline H. Haikala Sentenced Larry James Black, Jr., 37, from Center Point […]]]>

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A federal judge today convicted two former Chick-fil-A employees for their role in a conspiracy to defraud their former employer, U.S. Attorney Prim F. Escalona and U.S. Secret Service Special Agent announced. in charge Patrick M. Davis.

U.S. District Judge Madeline H. Haikala Sentenced Larry James Black, Jr., 37, from Center Point to 30 months in prison. Black pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud in September 2021. Joshua Daniel Powell, 40, of Moody was sentenced to 15 months in prison. Powell pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud in June 2021. During the time period charged in the indictment, Black and Powell were both administrators of the Chick-fil-A site in the Five Points neighborhood South of Birmingham.

According to the plea agreement, between April 2018 and January 2018, Black and Powell devised and implemented a plan to divert $492,000 in customer payments from Chick-fil-A Five Points and instead direct them to bank accounts under their control. Noir and Powell used these accounts to receive credit card payments from customers destined for Chick-fil-A Five Points. Many of these payments were for catering orders from large customers. To carry out the plan, Black and Powell used fraudulent digital email and payment accounts that mimicked the appearance of official Chick-fil-A accounts. In addition to these fraudulent “Chick-fil-A” accounts, Black and Powell also used a personal email account owned by Powell to intercept virtual credit card payments made on behalf of an additional customer.

In addition to conspiring to defraud Chick-Fil-A Five Points, Black admitted in his plea deal that he provided a fake Social Security number to various financial institutions and executed a scheme to defraud his mortgage lender. In January 2020, Black applied for a mortgage. As part of his loan application, Black falsified payroll records and misrepresented his income from the Chick-fil-A franchise. Due to these material misrepresentations, Black was able to obtain a mortgage in the amount of $159,948.00 to finance the purchase of a house in Center Point, Alabama.

The US Secret Service Cyber ​​Fraud Task Force investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward J. Canter prosecuted the case.

]]>
Liz Weston: Sorry. Social Security doesn’t care about the details of your divorce decree https://howtooccupy.org/liz-weston-sorry-social-security-doesnt-care-about-the-details-of-your-divorce-decree/ Sun, 09 Jan 2022 16:00:00 +0000 https://howtooccupy.org/liz-weston-sorry-social-security-doesnt-care-about-the-details-of-your-divorce-decree/ [ad_1] Dear Liz: I am in my third marriage. My first two marriages lasted 10 years each. My spouses have worked in jobs requiring them to contribute to social security. I am currently retired (since 1999) and have worked for a municipal administration my entire career. I am currently receiving a city pension. Am I […]]]>


[ad_1]

Dear Liz: I am in my third marriage. My first two marriages lasted 10 years each. My spouses have worked in jobs requiring them to contribute to social security. I am currently retired (since 1999) and have worked for a municipal administration my entire career. I am currently receiving a city pension. Am I entitled to receive anything from Social Security during the time I was married to my previous spouses? It seems fair since I had to pay each of them spousal support.

Responnse: This is a new argument! Sadly, the Social Security system doesn’t care about the details of your divorce judgments.

You can call Social Security and ask if you are entitled to a benefit, but don’t be hopeful if your pension comes from a job that did not contribute to Social Security. A provision known as government pension compensation would likely eliminate any divorced spouse or divorced survivor benefit you might receive.

Dear Liz: Our 23 year old daughter has a low limit credit card from her bank, mainly to establish her credit history. For the same purpose, we have also added it as an authorized user on one of our credit cards (yes, we can trust it). When she recently checked her credit reports at annualcreditreport.com, one of the agencies produced a report but another said they could not find it. Is this normal for a relatively new credit user? Could it be because she has a middle name made up of a hyphen? Should we be worried?

Responnse: It may take 30 days or more for the information to update at the credit bureaus, so she should try again and check the third credit bureau as well. If two offices cannot find it after 30 days, then it is possible that both credit cards fall under one office. In this case, she should consider obtaining a credit loan from a credit union that reports to the three bureaus.

If not, the problem is most likely with the credit bureau, and she should try ordering the missing credit report through the US Mail. The office that could not find it will have instructions for requesting a report this way on its site.

Liz Weston, Certified Financial Planner, is a personal finance columnist for NerdWallet. Questions can be directed to him at 3940 Laurel Canyon, No. 238, Studio City, CA 91604, or by using the “Contact” form at asklizweston.com.

[ad_2]

]]>