hack

CBS This Morning: Free Credit Freezes

Americans can help fight identity theft by freezing their credit – now free of charge – at the three main credit-monitoring services. This new policy is part of a law called The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act. Over a year ago, a hack of one of those credit services, Equifax, affected nearly 150 million people and exposed personal information including names, social security numbers and birth dates. I joined CBS This Morning to discuss the importance of freezing your credit, how to do it, and what to do if you are experiencing fraud.

Have a money question? Email me here.

Remember Equifax?

Remember Equifax?

Remember how freaked out we all were nine months ago, after the Equifax data breach? Human nature is a tough enemy, when it comes to your personal data security and privacy. When a news event flares up, we pay attention and then as the issue recedes, we can get a bit complacent. That’s why June, aka National Internet Safety Month, and the recently enacted European Union General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) make now a perfect time for a refresher on cyber security and privacy.

Tax Season Identity Theft

Tax season is like the Super Bowl for identity thieves and that means that you need to be on high alert for scams. To help break down some of what you need to guard against, we're joined by security expert Adam Levin. Here's the scams at the top of his list:

IRS Phone Scam

  • Where someone pretending to be from the IRS contacts a consumer stating they owe back taxes and threatens them with jail time if they don't pay. These fraudsters prey on fear and many consumers give in, paying a bogus fee through prepaid card, wiring money or even an iTunes card. Golden rule - the IRS never calls, emails or texts. If you receive these calls, hang up.

W-2 Scam

  • Imposters are using phishing schemes to target the HR departments of businesses asking for W-2 or W-9 information. In these spear phishing schemes, the emails appear legitimate but they are designed to steal important financial documents. If you receive this email or text, don't respond.

Child ID Theft

  • Fraudsters target children's data because they have clean, pristine credit profiles and they can use this data for a host of ID theft schemes, including tax related, medical, financial and even criminal. 
  • Parents need to be on high alert for child ID theft and should create a credit profile for their child and then freeze it.

Medicare and Social Security Scams

  • Medicare and Social Security beneficiaries across the country report receiving calls from scam operators (frequently with foreign accents), who claim to represent Medicare, Social Security, or an insurance company.
  • These callers claim that new Medicare, Social Security, or supplemental insurance benefits cards are being issued or that the beneficiary’s file must be updated. The scam artist asks the consumer to verify or provide their personal banking information, which the scammer then uses to commit ID theft.
  • The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Social Security Administration will not call you to ask you to disclose personal or financial information.

To combat tax fraud, consumers need to file early, take advantage of the PIN if they have been a victim of fraud, use long and strong passwords, enable two factor authentication, use legitimate tax preparers, store important tax docs on an encrypted thumb drive and never give out personal or financial info to someone who contacts you, even if the caller ID looks legit.

“Better Off” is sponsored by Betterment.

Have a finance related question? Email us here or call 855-411-JILL.

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"Better Off" theme music is by Joel Goodman, www.joelgoodman.com.

#346 The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History with Diana Henriques

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Yes, this is still here, and it will be for a while to serve as a reminder that there's a new place for Jill on Money content - YouTube!  Seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes it takes a little outside help (h/t to JOM friend, Joe A!) to recognize the obvious.  So don't freak out.  Going forward, we're going to put all our radio and podcast content on YouTube! It'll be easier for you to navigate and listen to past shows, because everything will be in one place.  Just click any of the links below and you'll be able to listen to this week's show as well as anything else you see that might interest you, including all the Better Off podcast content if you haven't been listening. Let us know what you think by emailing us at askjill@jillonmoney.com.

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 21 Download Hour One Here

Imagine this...you're in your 30s and a parent and grandparent just recently passed away.  One is bad enough, but  two losses seems unbearable. Now imagine that in the mourning process, you inherit over two million dollars! That's what happened to Jessica, our first caller this week. And as if she needs more to juggle, you can throw in the fact that Jessica is pregnant with her second child and she and her husband are selling their house and getting ready to move to another state.  It's a ton to process, hence the call to us.  Thankfully, Jessica has a good head on her shoulders.

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 21 Download Hour Two Here

Ask some Wall Street veterans where they were on October 19, 1987 and they will likely regale you with details of any crisis. My life changed that day in ways that often creep up on me. Indeed, Black Monday was the single worst day in Wall Street history, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunging by more than 22 percent in one session--that’s the equivalent of the blue chip index diving by more than 5,000 points today.

It was a “First Class Catastrophe”, according to our first class guest and storyteller supreme, Diana Henriques, who dropped by the studio to help us retrace the events that led up to that day.

Diana joined us on the show earlier this year when her book, The Wizard of Lies: Bernie Madoff and the Death of Trust, was made into an HBO movie. This time around Diana is joining us to discuss her latest book, A First-Class Catastrophe: The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History.  As Diana recounts, Black Monday was more than seven years in the making and threatened nearly every U.S. financial institution.

There were missed opportunities, market delusions, and destructive actions that stretched from the “silver crisis” of 1980 to turf battles in Washington and a rivalry between the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Here’s the crazy thing...you’d think that after Black Monday, lessons would be learned. But in her analysis, Henriques demonstrates how that Monday in the fall of 1987 was the predicate to the financial crisis of 2008. Sadly, investors, regulators, and bankers failed to heed the lessons of 1987, even as the same patterns resurfaced.

This was a fascinating interview for me because I lived through this period. I had just started my career on Wall Street, as the chaos was unfolding. I watched firsthand as my father nearly lost his business.  This chat was like going down memory lane and it’ll give you guys a good glimpse of the life I used to live before I started hosting podcasts and radio shows!

Thanks to everyone who participated this week, especially Mark, the Best Producer/Music Curator in the World. Here's how to contact us:

  • Call 855-411-JILL and we'll schedule time to get you on the show LIVE 

Ep. 042 - The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History with Diana Henriques

Ask some Wall Street veterans where they were on October 19, 1987 and they will likely regale you with details of any crisis. My life changed that day in ways that often creep up on me. Indeed, Black Monday was the single worst day in Wall Street history, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunging by more than 22 percent in one session--that’s the equivalent of the blue chip index diving by more than 5,000 points today.

It was a “First Class Catastrophe”, according to our first class guest and storyteller supreme, Diana Henriques, who dropped by the studio to help us retrace the events that led up to that day.

Diana joined us on the podcast earlier this year when her book, The Wizard of Lies: Bernie Madoff and the Death of Trust, was made into an HBO movie. This time around Diana is joining us to discuss her latest book, A First-Class Catastrophe: The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History. As Diana recounts, Black Monday was more than seven years in the making and threatened nearly every U.S. financial institution.

There were missed opportunities, market delusions, and destructive actions that stretched from the “silver crisis” of 1980 to turf battles in Washington and a rivalry between the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Here’s the crazy thing...you’d think that after Black Monday, lessons would be learned. But in her analysis, Henriques demonstrates how that Monday in the fall of 1987 was the predicate to the financial crisis of 2008. Sadly, investors, regulators, and bankers failed to heed the lessons of 1987, even as the same patterns resurfaced.

This was a fascinating interview for me because I lived through this period. I had just started my career on Wall Street, as the chaos was unfolding. I watched firsthand as my father nearly lost his business. This chat was like going down memory lane and it’ll give you guys a good glimpse of the life I used to live before I started hosting podcasts and radio shows!

“Better Off” is sponsored by Betterment.

Have a finance related question? Email us here or call 855-411-JILL.

We love feedback so please subscribe and leave us a rating or review in iTunes!

Connect with me at these places for all my content:

https://twitter.com/jillonmoney

https://www.facebook.com/JillonMoney

https://www.instagram.com/jillonmoney/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jillonmoney/ 

http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/jill-... 

http://betteroffpodcast.com/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/b...

"Better Off" theme music is by Joel Goodman, www.joelgoodman.com.

#345 How Wall Street Destroyed Main Street with Rana Foroohar

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Yes, this is still here, and it will be for a while to serve as a reminder that there's a new place for Jill on Money content - YouTube!  Seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes it takes a little outside help (h/t to JOM friend, Joe A!) to recognize the obvious.  So don't freak out.  Going forward, we're going to put all our radio and podcast content on YouTube! It'll be easier for you to navigate and listen to past shows, because everything will be in one place.  Just click any of the links below and you'll be able to listen to this week's show as well as anything else you see that might interest you, including all the Better Off podcast content if you haven't been listening. Let us know what you think by emailing us at askjill@jillonmoney.com.

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 14 Download Hour One Here

Maybe I'm stating the obvious here, but life doesn't always unfold the way we want or think it will.  Things come up, and more often than not it's health related, just like with our first caller this week, Daniel from Atlanta. Daniel, a federal employee, was rolling right along until he was diagnosed with Parkinson's and eventually had to retire.  Now he's tasked with making his money last a lot longer than he was anticipating and wants to make sure his asset allocation is in good shape.  Here's a tease: it wasn't!

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 14 Download Hour Two Here

We recently covered why Wall Street matters, on the show featuring Bill Cohan.

In hour two we’re doing a 180 with financial journalist and author Rana Foroohar. Rana’s book, "Maker and Takers: How Wall Street Destroyed Main Street", doesn’t exactly paint our economic system in the best light.

Rana explores how the misguided financial practices and philosophies that nearly toppled the global financial system have infiltrated many US businesses and discusses how the “financialization of America,” the trend by which finance and its way of thinking have come to reign supreme, is perpetuating Wall Street’s reign over Main Street. The ultimate result? A widening of the gap between rich and poor, which Rana argues, threatens the future of the American Dream. It's not all doom and gloom, because Rana lays out how we can reverse these trends and find a better path forward.

And since it’s not everyday that we have a Financial Times columnist in the studio, we also talked a good bit about the global economy, including Germany, Brexit, and China.

Thanks to everyone who participated this week, especially Mark, the Best Producer/Music Curator in the World. Here's how to contact us:

  • Call 855-411-JILL and we'll schedule time to get you on the show LIVE 

Ep. 041 - The Equifax Data Breach with Credit Expert John Ulzheimer

How many of you were impacted by the recent Equifax data breach? I was, Mark was, and considering 145.5 million other Americans were impacted, I’m going to guess that includes many of you too.

Now that the news is out, heads have rolled (CEO Richard Smith has stepped down), Congressional hearings have taken place, where do things stand? More importantly, what should you do? Who should you trust?

In times like these, there’s one go-to person: John Ulzheimer, the foremost authority on anything involving credit scores, credit reports, breaches, etc. John is so good that we did this interview on the phone!

Formerly of FICO, Equifax and Credit.com, John is the only recognized credit expert who actually comes from the credit industry. He has served as a credit expert witness in more than 270 cases and has been qualified to testify in both Federal and State court on the topic of consumer credit.

We’re going to get into all the dos and don’ts with John, but so you also have the vitals to reference, here are the main takeaways:

  • Contact one (under Federal law, each is obligated to notify the other two) of the three credit bureaus Equifax (800-766-0008), Experian (888-397-3742) and TransUnion (800-680-7289) to put a free fraud alert on your credit report. You should also contact a fourth, lesser known company Innovis. The alert makes it harder for an identity thief to open more accounts in your name, but experts note that alerts usually just slow down the process of criminals opening accounts in your name, they don’t prevent it.
  • If someone has used your information to make purchases or open accounts, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and print your Identity Theft Affidavit. Use that to file a police report and create your Identity Theft Report.
  • Place a credit-freeze on your credit file, which generally stops all access to your credit report. Unfortunately, you need to contact all the companies to freeze your file. Here are the links: Equifax; Experian; TransUnion and Innovis. Important note about a freeze: If you need to access credit, you have to unfreeze your records, which can take a few days. Some states charge a fee for placing or removing a credit freeze, but it’s free to place or remove a fraud alert.

I’m not trying to freak you out or make you even more paranoid, but the reality of the situation is not if your information will be compromised, but when.

“Better Off” is sponsored by Betterment.

Have a finance related question? Email us here or call 855-411-JILL.

We love feedback so please subscribe and leave us a rating or review in iTunes!

Connect with me at these places for all my content:

https://twitter.com/jillonmoney

https://www.facebook.com/JillonMoney

https://www.instagram.com/jillonmoney/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/jillonmoney/ 

http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/jill-... 

http://betteroffpodcast.com/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/b...

"Better Off" theme music is by Joel Goodman, www.joelgoodman.com.

#344 Weapons of Math Destruction with Cathy O’Neil

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Yes, this is still here, and it will be for a while longer to serve as a reminder that there's a new place for Jill on Money content - YouTube!  Seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes it takes a little outside help (h/t to JOM friend, Joe A!) to recognize the obvious.  So don't freak out.  Going forward, we're going to put all our radio and podcast content on YouTube! It'll be easier for you to navigate and listen to past shows, because everything will be in one place.  Just click any of the links below and you'll be able to listen to this week's show as well as anything else you see that might interest you, including all the Better Off podcast content if you haven't been listening. Let us know what you think by emailing us at askjill@jillonmoney.com.

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 7 Download Hour One Here

What happens when you're in your 40s, not a millionaire, and already retired? Well, you start to wonder if you retired too early, and that's exactly the case with our first caller this week, Lisa, from Michigan.  A retired cop, Lisa didn't really start socking away money until she was in her 30s...but let me tell you, she must've been cranking the past few years, because she's actually in pretty good shape.  Will she ever have to work another day in her life? You'll have to tune in for the verdict!

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST SHOW ON YOUTUBE

Oct 7 Download Hour Two Here

Hour two this week is an example of my geekiness.

I love math and statistics...but I am nothing compared to the brilliant Cathy O’Neil. I have been a fan girl of Cathy’s since discovering her blog, mathbabe.org and then hearing her on the Slate Money podcast. Cathy, whose New York Times bestselling book Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy is now out in paperback, is the ultimate math geek, but more importantly, she is one of the most thoughtful intellectuals that I have encountered.

Cathy’s resume is impressive: a Ph.D. in math from Harvard, a postdoc at the MIT math department, a professor at Barnard College, where she published a number of research papers in arithmetic algebraic geometry and then a short-lived stint on Wall Street, before she launched her consulting firm, ORCAA.

When I heard Cathy explain complicated topics and then read the hardcover edition of the book last year, I knew we had to have her on the show. It’s such a fascinating read about how big data can be manipulated, infiltrate various parts of our lives and magnify the underlying inequality that exists in our economy. From how teachers are measured to how policing strategies are developed to credit scores and health insurance...it’s going to blow your mind when you hear how algorithms (mathematical models), dictate so much of our day-to-day experiences.

But what happens when these models are opaque, unregulated and incontestable? Unfortunately, the already unlucky and struggling among us, get the short end of the stick. What can individuals do about these unproven mathematical equations? As you’ll hear Cathy explain, it starts by asking some basic questions.

Thanks to everyone who participated this week, especially Mark, the Best Producer/Music Curator in the World. Here's how to contact us:

  • Call 855-411-JILL and we'll schedule time to get you on the show LIVE