Be Aware of “Breast Cancer Awareness” Scams

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month – time to think pink. But also take a clue from those theme-hued ribbons and other merchandise. Your desire to support the search for a cure for the second-biggest cause of cancer death among women can be the perfect opening for charity scammers. The same thing can happen when natural disasters and other in-the-news events prompt the opening of hearts and wallets. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter There are lots of legitimate …

Do Not Fall for “Do Not Call” Scam

Perhaps the last nuisance phone call you might expect is from the very government agency that’s trying to halt them… especially if your phone number is among the 209 million already listed on the National Do Not Call Registry. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter It’s scammers -once again – who are posing as representatives of the Federal Trade Commission or the registry with an offer to enroll a phone number or “confirm” or “renew” an existing listing. …

An End to Robocalls?

The latest weapon in the battle against illegal robocalls is now ready to halt those illegal automated telemarking phone calls at your home… provided your service provider is compatible with the technology it uses. It’s called Nomorobo  – for “no more robo” and it’s free. Launching this week, it’s the brainchild of a software programmer from Long Island who won a contest earlier this year sponsored by Federal Trade Commission and offering $50,000 to the best solution against these annoying automated …

When Danger Lurks in ‘Lily Collins’

Move over, Emma Watson. The new Malware Maven is fellow actress Lily Collins. The star of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones and Mirror, Mirror (and daughter of ’80s music icon Phil Collins) tops McAfee’s 2013 list of “Most Dangerous Celebrities”  to search for on the Web. Roughly one in seven online searches of her name – along with words such as “free downloads,” “nude pictures” and “apps” – landed computer users on websites that the security vendor says “tested positive” …

Smartphone Smarts During Trade-In

The typical cellphone user upgrades every 18 months. Trade-in programs like those recently announced by Apple and Walmart could spark even quicker stampedes for the latest-and-greatest models – with turned-in phones still full of personal data. “Most people consider a smartphone a communications device,” notes Adam Levin, former New Jersey Director of Consumer Affairs and founder of Identity Theft 911, a provider of identity management and breach-response services for businesses. “What many people don’t realize is that it’s a data …

A Renewal of Subscription Renewal Scams

Like reading home-delivered newspapers and magazines? Pay close attention to invoices that claim to start or renew your subscriptions. In an old scam that has recently been, ahem … renewed, third-party companies are mailing bogus subscription invoices that purport to be “on behalf  of” well-known publishers. Problem is, the firms may not be working with publishers as claimed. Several leading publishers have recently been hit in this scam, which aims to get you to make payments directly to the outside company, not …