NEW PROGRAM OFFERS A WAY TO INSTANTLY BOOST YOUR CREDIT SCORE
The new credit assessment program could help millions of Americans instantly improve their credit scores by adding data from their checking account. For people with limited credit history, Experian Boost will provide a second chance to prove themselves trustworthy borrowers.
 
YOU'VE BEEN BREACHED: HACKERS STOLE NEARLY HALF A BILLION PERSONAL RECORDS IN 2018
Hackers stole nearly 447 million consumer records containing sensitive personal information last year, according to a year-end report from the Identity Theft Resource Center. That’s a jump of 126 percent from 2017. “Data breaches are now a normal, everyday occurrence," the report concluded.
 
THE GOV'T SHUTDOWN WAS A REMINDER OF JUST HOW LITTLE AMERICANS ARE SAVING
We can all learning something from the government shutdown – the importance of a rainy-day savings fund. This story also has tips on how to get started, plus important information for any federal workers or government contractors struggling because of the shutdown.
 
ONE MORE PROBLEM FOR FURLOUGHED GOVERNMENT WORKERS - SCAMMERS
The government shutdown has created a golden opportunity for scammers, who are targeting desperate federal workers struggling to pay their bills — and the people who want to help. Watch out for fake job listings, bogus loan offers and charity scams.
 
GETTING DIGITAL BILLING STATEMENTS? HERE ARE SOME THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
A new Consumer Action survey shows that the way you receive a billing statement can significantly impact your behavior — such as how likely you are to review that bill.
 
HOW TO CREATE STRONG PASSWORDS YOU CAN REMEMBER
Here are the worst passwords of the year. Are yours on the list? While cyber criminals are good at what they do, poor password hygiene –having a few simple passwords that open all your online accounts – makes their job even easier.
 
7 RESOLUTIONS TO IMPROVE YOUR FINANCIAL WELL-BEING
The new year is a good time to assess your finances and resolve to do better. Here are seven financial resolutions that can make a big difference for you and your family in 2019 and beyond.
 
STORES WITH THE BEST AND WORST RETURN POLICIES
2018 Holiday return policies: Some naughty, most nice. But these three big retailers — Amazon, Walmart and Target — make holiday gift returns easier.
 
WARNING: RISK-FREE TRIAL OFFERS CAN WIND UP BEING VERY COSTLY
Many of these offers aren’t really free. You could wind up getting merchandise you don’t want and didn’t order. The average victim loses $186, according to a new report from the BBB.
 
PARENTS, YOU DON'T NEED TO BUY EVERYTHING ON YOUR KIDS' WISH LISTS
Don't shop 'til you drop for the kids. They can't have everything they want, financial planning and parenting experts caution. So what do you do?

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