Defend Your Dollars: Share this site! We support reforms to the financial marketplace to curb bad practices by banks and lenders.

Have You Received Your Free FICO Score?

Consumers are finally seeing substantial progress in the credit score market. They’ve long faced real challenges in getting the same credit score that their banks and lenders purchased when making lending decisions about them. But over the past year, millions of Americans have gained access to free, reliable credit scores. Recently, President Obama announced that more Continue Reading

Posted by Maureen Mahoney in CFPB, Credit, Credit Cards, Credit Reports | No Comments »

Thinking About a Reverse Mortgage? Californians Get New Protections in 2015

Wondering if a reverse mortgage is right for you?  Reverse mortgages are home loans that allow eligible homeowners, 62 years of age or older, to tap into their home equity.  While that friendly reverse mortgage salesperson can be helpful, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) says you should not rely only on the advice you Continue Reading

Posted by Norma Garcia in CFPB, Credit, Mortgages, Reverse mortgages | No Comments »

CFPB Announces “Scorecard” For Campus Banking Products

In a new effort to protect students being marketed campus banking products, the CFPB announced today that it is developing a “Safe Student Account Scorecard” for schools.  The Scorecard will give schools a roadmap to negotiating a better deal for students when choosing a financial institution to offer bank accounts or prepaid cards on campus. We’ve Continue Reading

Posted by Suzanne Martindale in Banking, CFPB, Student Loans | Comments Off

Buying a House? Don’t Forget to Buy the Right Mortgage Too

Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released some new online tools to help you shop for a mortgage.  The home buying process can be daunting, with so many decisions to make as you move through unfamiliar and high-dollar territory.  That may explain why a new CFPB investigation found that nearly half of all home buyers Continue Reading

Posted by Norma Garcia in Banking, CFPB, Credit, Mortgages | Comments Off

New Offerings from Credit Karma and Experian Not as Helpful as they Appear

Many consumers make a New Year’s resolution to check their credit reports and scores. We’re all in favor of that, especially as Consumer Reports recently found that just under half of Americans have never checked one of their credit reports from the credit bureaus Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion. This year, two companies say they will Continue Reading

Posted by Maureen Mahoney in Credit, Credit Reports | Comments Off

Bitcoin Exchange Hack Highlights Virtual Currency Risks

Not again?! It appears that another Bitcoin exchange has suffered a hack. Bitstamp apparently lost about 19,000 bitcoins, according to news reports  – that’s around $5 million – and is temporarily shutdown as of this writing (see screenshot for what we found when we went to Bitstamp’s website today). In light of this news, now Continue Reading

Posted by Christina Tetreault in Payments | Comments Off

Zero Balance: What to Do If You Encounter Gift Card Problems

After the holidays, people everywhere are eager to spend the gift cards they received from friends and family. However, some consumers may get a nasty shock in the checkout lane: the gift cards they expected to be loaded with cash turn out to be empty. Empty gift cards were a big problem in 2014; thankfully, Continue Reading

Posted by Christina Tetreault in Gift Cards, Payments | Comments Off

Thirty-Five Things in 12 Months: CFPB Working for You–2014 in Review

As this year comes to a close, we wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the many actions the CFPB has taken to defend your rights as a consumer of financial services and products.  The CFPB has a tough job, as we all know, and they’ve done it well.  They are an indispensable Continue Reading

Posted by Norma Garcia in Banking, CFPB, Credit, Credit Cards, Credit Reports, Debt Collection, Debt Relief, Mortgages, Payday Loans, Payments, Privacy, Security Breaches, Seniors, Student Loans, Uncategorized | Comments Off

From Strip to Chip: New Payment Cards Are Coming

Your payment cards may look different in 2015. Card issuers are rolling out cards with smart chip (also known as EMV) technology. The chips – little gold micro processors that are built into the card (see picture) – make payment cards more secure, but consumers will have to adapt in order to use them. The Continue Reading

Posted by Christina Tetreault in Banking, Credit Cards, Payments, Security Breaches | Comments Off

Another Day, Another Data Breach

What to Do If You Recently Shopped at Staples or bebe Have you shopped at bebe or Staples recently? If the answer is yes, your payment card information could be at risk. Both chains confirmed security breaches in which crooks are suspected of stealing customers’ payment card information. After data breaches such these, consumers are Continue Reading

Posted by Christina Tetreault in Credit Cards, Payments, Security Breaches | Comments Off