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74 search results for: pros and cons


The Real Pros (and Cons) of Post-ACA Health Insurance in California

While Congress postures and pundits postulate, the public is actually getting its first taste of post-ACA (Affordable Care Act) health insurance.  The program officially starts in January 2014. However, the California Health Insurance Exchange has had its maiden run in 2014 and is offering very specific prices for an array of plans.  Everyone seems to have taken a deep breath as we all await the law’s impact upon  insurance prices. Without claiming any psychic powers,  I can  predict with a high degree of certainty that my health care costs will drop considerably……however others may not be that fortunate. Here’s how to find out about your health insurance premium future:   The key point, folks:  the Health Insurance Exchanges are focused […]


Trump Trumpery Testifier: Protecting Consumer Protections

So he won.  Whether his election is good for America or not remains to be seen.  But we have a pretty good sense that it won’t be good for consumers.   Throughout the debacle that masqueraded as a political campaign,  Trump threatened many important and hard-fought consumer protections, such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform.   Trump hasn’t provided specifics on any meaningful policies that would protect consumers. No surprise; he’s aggressively pro-business and dismissive of consumer protections.  In fact, his opposition to the proposed AT&T buyout of Time Warner is driven more by a desire for leverage over CNN than to protect consumer choice. Trump’s disinterest in consumers is typified by his attitude towards the Federal […]


SCAM ALERT: Phone Scams And Other Scary Monsters

Phone fraud is a multi-million dollar industry that crosses international and industry borders. Attackers target call centers, as well as consumers, in attempts to gain access to funds, steal merchandise, and phish for identities. Americans lost an estimated $7.4 billion to phone scams in 2015, according to an online Harris Poll survey. It’s projected that 27 million people  (11% of all Americans)  got taken by phone scammers last year. This does not include the damage that fraud and other security breaches can have on the reputation of an enterprise. Male millennials (age 18-34) had the highest rate of gullibility, with 38% reporting they’d lost money to phone scams in the past twelve months. Only 17% of female millennials were tricked […]


Stop Robocalls and Telemarketers Now!

Robocalls — arrggh!  (which is a politically correct way of saying something far more exasperated).   Telemarketers who call you are largely crooks calling from other countries and thus outside the reach of U.S. laws that prohibit telemarketing calls.   So even though you’ve signed up for the National Do Not Call Registry, you are still getting harassed by these callers.   It’s gotten so bad that the Federal Communications Commission, has directed the country’s biggest communications providers to offer robocall blocking services for free. However, fighting these robocalls made by unscrupulous telemarketers has never been easier — and it will get even easier in the future.   For now, it takes one of three steps: 1.  If you have landline, cable or Internet phone […]


ALERT: Bogus Fake Review Sites Scam Consumers

Raise your hand if this has happened to you.  You receive some email or text touting a cool sounding “system” or “device” or “cure” and you want to check it out.    So you go to your trusty Google or Bing search engine and type in the name of the offer plus the words “complaint”, “scam” or “review”.   They will display a slew of websites that have reviewed or investigated or evaluated the exact offer that you are researching.  BAM!   You just got scammed…..again.    Nine times out of ten, these sites are supplemental sales sites created by marketers to make it as difficult for you to find actual complaints or warnings about the offers that they are pitching.    They […]