Bill Brooks

Consumer advice: Hackers are cracking your email, people

November 08, 2018 at 5:00 am

EDITOR’S NOTE: Consumer advocate Bill Brooks continues to recover from surgery after fracturing a bone in his leg. He’d like to let his readers know that this column is in great hands with Terri Dickerson, and he expects to be up and runnin...

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Beware deceptive calls about your Medicare

November 05, 2018 at 5:00 am

The government started mailing new Medicare cards in April 2018 and they expect to have the process completed by April 2019. We’ve received some calls from local readers asking when they can expect their card to arrive in the mail.The websi...

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Consumer advice: Halloween has passed but zombies linger

November 01, 2018 at 5:00 am

There is an actual term for debt that has come back from the dead to haunt you. Zombie debt (also known as ghost debt) is a dormant debt that is resurrected by debt collectors and is designed to get you to pay for something you may no longe...

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Facebook users, stay safe out there

October 29, 2018 at 5:00 am

Editor’s note: If you don’t see Bill in public for awhile, that’s because the man about town broke his leg on Thursday. It was surgically repaired Friday at Kootenai Health. While Bill is off the streets for awhile, his fingers still work j...

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Withstanding Category 4 scams

October 25, 2018 at 5:00 am

The strong winds from the hurricanes have definitely blown devastation through the Carolinas and Florida, but they’ve also blown in charity scammers, too. These new scams claim to seek relief for the victims but we as givers need to do some...

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CONSUMER ADVICE: More people online, more chances to be scammed

October 22, 2018 at 5:00 am

SENIORS — EASY MARKS?: Are seniors targeted more than other consumers for frauds and scams? The answer is yes. Communications and banking technologies move money around the world at lighting speed these days. Crooks that would separate you ...

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Consumer advice: PayPal: An old scam is making an encore

October 18, 2018 at 5:00 am

PayPal offers a valuable service by allowing us to pay for our purchases over the Internet without having to use our debit or credit cards. This helps us protect our valuable personal information. But be aware of an email phishing scam wher...

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Stay tuned to see how Sears story goes

October 15, 2018 at 5:00 am

Here it comes. It is reported that Sears has been working with its advisors and trying to decide whether to file a Chapter 11 bankruptcy request or a Chapter 7 request. Both will affect consumers’ rights and could affect pension plans of re...

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Consumer advice: Yo ho ho! Mess with scam callers

October 11, 2018 at 5:00 am

Jolly Roger (jollyrogertelephone.com) is a new program using artificial intelligence (AI) to drive scam callers crazy. The program “engages” the live caller using AI to keep them on the phone as long as possible and to frustrate them to no ...

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Consumer Advice: Don’t take the Craigslist bait

October 08, 2018 at 5:00 am

CRAIGSLIST CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM: A couple from Chicago contracted for the perfect Seattle location for their wedding using Craigslist. The couple rented a Seattle residence for two weeks for about $3,000 for their wedding preparation and n...

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