The Sneakiest Online Shopping Scams

Online shoppers will spend a record $91 billion over 61 days this holiday season, according to predictions. On Black Friday alone, there will be some $3 billion in internet buys, and Cyber Monday is expected to be the busiest shopping day of all time, generating about $3.4 billion in sales. That’s great news for retailers … as well as rip-off artists behind these sneakiest online shopping scams: App traps. In the reigning ruse, a surge in bogus apps recently began …

Election Protection: 5 Voter Scams to Avoid

In this homestretch to the Nov. 8 elections, expect a hard push from scammers posing as pollsters, political party staffers or PAC officials in tongue-twisting ploys to pilfer your money and identity. Getting cash or sensitive information through election scams is more conceivable than with other schemes. Phones can ring legitimately, since Do Not Call Registry rules allow pollsters, politicians and charities to contact you. And, of course, caller ID can be easily spoofed. Campaign workers are going door to door, …

When Choosing the Wrong Ride Might Be the Right Choice on a Multigenerational Family Vacation

I love helping to spread the news about our AARP travel surveys, which explore people 45-plus and their vacation and travel habits. On more than one occasion, I find myself on the wrong side of the research, and I try to adjust. I had one of those self-adjustments this month around multigenerational travel. The most recent survey found that almost half of the folks surveyed planned to take a multigenerational trip in the next 12 months. I wasn’t in that …

Customer Survey Scams: From Reward to Rip-Off

Giving your two cents in some telephone, text-message or online “customer satisfaction” surveys can come at a steep cost: an endless barrage of more phone calls, pop-up messages and spam; malware to compromise your smartphone or computer or to steal sensitive files; or even identity theft. According to the Better Business Bureau, the latest survey scam making the rounds involves emails supposedly from leading retailers including Macy’s and Walgreens. In the scheme, you’re told you’ve been selected to complete a survey about a recent shopping …

Are Taxes Too Complicated? What Do YOU Think?

Subtract line 12 from line 11 and then multiply by your frustration level. By a 2-1 ratio, American voters find the tax system too complicated, and by large margins have their federal income tax returns prepared by some someone else, according to a new Quinnipiac University Poll. Older voters feel the most pain. The survey found that 68 percent of voters age 55 and older have someone else do their federal tax returns – the highest rate of any age …