What to know about the second round of Economic Impact Payment (EIP) checks and cards

What to know about the second round of Economic Impact Payment (EIP) checks and cards

This article was originally posted by the FTC. See the original article here.

The US Department of the Treasury and the IRS are working hard to get a second round of Economic Impact Payments (EIP) to people. You might have already gotten your payment direct deposited into your bank account. That started on December 29th. You might have gotten a check in the mail. But, like last time, some people will get their payment in the mail on an EIP VISA debit card. Don’t be surprised if the way you get this second round of payments is different than the first time. Whichever way you get your payment, it’s all money the government wants you to have, and quickly. So: if you qualify for an Economic Impact Payment, look at your bank account for a direct deposit, keep an eye out for a check in the mail, or watch your mailbox carefully this month for an EIP Visa debit card.

With checks, you know the drill: get the check, deposit the check. Since you might not have gotten money on a VISA debit card before, here’s a bit more info. The EIP VISA debit card will come in an envelope that looks like this:

The debit cards are managed by Money Network Financial, LLC and issued by Treasury’s financial agent, MetaBank®, N.A., and will look like this:

If you got an EIP VISA debit card in the mail, here’s what to do.

  • Activate the EIP VISA debit card right away by calling 1-800-240-8100. To activate your card, you’ll have to give the last six digits your Social Security number. Once the card is activated, you can use it anywhere that accepts VISA debit cards, including online or in a store, or at an ATM to get cash. You also can transfer the money from the card to your personal bank account without fees. Keep in mind that the EIP debit cards will expire after three years. If that happens, call customer service to request the funds be sent to you as a check.
  • Got questions about the EIP card? Call the 24-hour call center at 1-800-240-8100. You can also visit EIPCard.com for information on using your EIP card, like where to log in to see your card balance, or where to find an in-network ATM to get money out of the card at no charge.
  • Got more general EIP questions? The IRS also has an FAQs page in English, or in Spanish.

And one last thing. Like last time, scammers are at work trying to get your money and/or personal information. Remember that the government will never call, text, email, or ask you to click on a link to activate your EIP card or get your money. If anyone does, it’s a scam. Don’t give anyone your personal or financial information, like your Social Security or bank account numbers. And never pay anyone to get your EIP funds. Report any scam immediately to the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

Brought to you by Dr. Ware, Microsoft Office 365 Silver Partner, Charleston SC.

Cracking down on ticket bots that leave you out in the cold

Cracking down on ticket bots that leave you out in the cold

This article was originally posted by the FTC. See the original article here.

For most of us, it’s been a long time since we’ve been able to attend a live event. Think back, if you can, to the last time you tried to buy tickets online to go to a concert, a game, or a play. Were you shut out because tickets sold out before you got yours? You’re not alone.

So what happened? Sometimes there just aren’t enough tickets available for everyone who wants to attend an event, especially if promoters save tickets for artists and other VIPs. Ticket bots may also be a factor. People may use software to buy tickets quicker than the average consumer. They also might use bots to cheat the ticketing system and bypass ticket limits or to buy tickets using fake names and addresses. Then they resell the tickets for higher prices. Congress passed the Better Online Ticket Sales (BOTS) Act to address these problems.

We (the Federal Trade Commission) settled three cases with companies that violated the BOTS Act. The companies circumvented Ticketmaster’s security measures to buy thousands of tickets that they later re-sold at a profit. The court orders require the companies to stop their illegal ticket-buying practices and impose civil penalties. (Read the business blog post to learn more about the case.)

The next time you’re looking to score tickets to a must-see event:

  • Look for opportunities to buy tickets before they go on sale to the public. Sign up for newsletters or alerts from ticket sellers, artists, or venues, or follow them on social media. And check with your credit card company about promotions.
  • Set up an account with the ticket seller. That way you’ll be ready to buy as soon as tickets go on sale.
  • Check back. The promoters might make more tickets available after the initial release or add another show.

Brought to you by Dr. Ware, Microsoft Office 365 Silver Partner, Charleston SC.

Cracking down on ticket bots that leave you out in the cold

Get ready for NCPW 2021!

This article was originally posted by the FTC. See the original article here.

March is right around the corner, and you know what that means…it’s almost time for National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW)! This year, NCPW is February 28 – March 6, 2021. So now’s the time to jump into planning.

NCPW is the time of year when government agencies, consumer protection groups, and people like you work together to help others understand their consumer rights and make well-informed decisions about money. Want to join in? Here are some ideas:

  • Help your family, friends and community avoid scams. Order free materials to share in English or Spanish. Order by February 1st to ensure delivery by NCPW.
  • Plan a virtual consumer protection event. Find ideas at ftc.gov/ncpw for how you can get involved.
  • Share resources on COVID-19 scams. From contact tracing scams to vaccine scams, you want to know how to avoid them. Check out ftc.gov/coronavirus/scams for free resources, including one-pagers and social media shareables.
  • Visit ftc.gov/ncpw for even more tips and resources.

We’ll be back next month to tell you more about the virtual events we have planned for NCPW. See you then.

Brought to you by Dr. Ware, Microsoft Office 365 Silver Partner, Charleston SC.

Cisco Releases Advisories for Multiple Products

This article is contributed. See the original author and article here.

Original release date: January 21, 2021

Cisco has released security updates to address vulnerabilities in multiple Cisco products. A remote attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities to take control of an affected system. For updates addressing lower severity vulnerabilities, see the Cisco Security Advisories page.

CISA encourages users and administrators to review the following Cisco Advisories and apply the necessary updates:

This product is provided subject to this Notification and this Privacy & Use policy.

Drupal Releases Security Updates

This article is contributed. See the original author and article here.

Original release date: January 21, 2021

Drupal has released security updates to address a vulnerability affecting Drupal. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability to take control of an affected system.

CISA encourages users and administrators to review Drupal Advisory SA-CORE-2021-001 and apply the necessary updates or mitigations.

This product is provided subject to this Notification and this Privacy & Use policy.