National Consumers League

Pages tagged "personal finance"

DC City Council should protect consumers from deceptive automatically renewing subscriptions

Brian YoungThe scenario is all too familiar to thousands of District residents: while looking over a credit card bill, you notice a mysterious charge from a company or service you vaguely remember doing business with a year ago. Why do you keep getting charged for a cleaning service you only used once? If this sounds familiar, chances are that you are the unwitting victim of an automatic renewal clause.

NCL's #DataInsecurity Project aims to protect Americans’ personal information

databreach.jpgNCL recently debuted the first issue of The #DataInsecurity Digest, a twice monthly publication curated by NCL's own, John Breyault, to deliver important consumer-focused data security news, policy and news analysis, and information about upcoming events directly to your inbox. Click here to subscribe.

In 2013, there were 614 data breaches that led to more than 550 million identities compromised. New data breaches means more identity theft and other fraud, and more consumers facing financial loss, great inconvenience, and a loss of trust in the marketplace. That is why NCL is working on the #DataInsecurity Project -- to raise awareness about the need for reforms aimed at better protecting consumer data.

Turning cybersecurity awareness into cybersecurity reform

Facebook_NCSAM_icon.jpgOctober is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, which is a good time for consumers to take stock of their online safety habits and practices. Great tips and tricks for creating stronger passwords, taking advantage of two-factor authentication and learning to spot phishing scams and other cyber threats abound from organizations like the Federal Trade Commission, Stop. Think. Connect., and NCL’s own

Dos and Don'ts for College-bound $tudents

92_college_movein_.jpgMillions of young people are arriving on the nation’s college campuses this month—finally, life without parents for the first time for many! Unfortunately, many of these young people will be entering the consumer marketplace with little understanding of how to navigate it successfully—credit cards? utility bills? rent? And even worse—many students may fall prey to scams targeting college students.

Exposing discriminatory car loans

92_bostian.jpgLet's say you're at the auto dealership, negotiating terms for your new car. At the next sales desk is a family whose income, credit score, and assets are identical to yours. When all is said and done, however, your loan costs $300 more than your fellow customer's. How come? Most likely, it's because you're African-American and your fellow customer is white. Wait a minute, isn't that illegal, you wonder? Well, sure, but how do you prove it? 

With Communities of Color Consumer Protection Symposium, NCL helps celebrate Black History Month

February is Black History Month and reminds us of NCL’s deep historical connections to the Black community. W.E.B. DuBois, the renowned civil rights leader and first editor of the NAACP’s newspaper, The Crisis, was a brilliant scholar and close friend of Florence Kelley, NCL’s General Secretary. Kelley came from a Philadelphia Quaker family, raised with fiercely abolitionist beliefs with no tolerance for racial prejudice or discrimination.

College kids and credit: making smart choices

This time of year, many parents are thinking about giving their college-bound children a credit or debit card to help pay for living expenses. Once they get to campus, many students may be shocked at the costs they encounter and be tempted to open their own credit card accounts. For these young consumers and their families, abiding by a few simple rules could help them avoid costly headaches down the road.

Denied health claim? Appeal it!

Have you run into problems with your health plan? You’re not alone! Half of all consumers experience problems with them, but fewer than 1 in every 10,000 tries to fight, or appeal, when a claim has been denied. But appealing a denied claim works—maybe more often than you’d think!

Debit cards: Know how to use them

Debit cards are convenient and safer to carry than cash, and they're more widely accepted by merchants these days than personal checks. But just because they look and feel like a credit card doesn't mean they work exactly like one, and not understanding the differences could cost you.

Teens spend big, but don't always spend smart

Over half of teens (52 percent) wrongly believe that a credit card is an informal agreement to pay money owed. And where are they learning this? Sixty-three percent say they get most of their information about money, credit, and other financial matters from their parents.