You may have a better chance at winning a case in court involving annoying robocalls than hitting the Powerball lottery.
You do know you have rights when it comes to those unwanted calls, right? Well if you didn’t know, take note of a recent lawsuit won by a Texas woman who endured 153 such calls from Time Warner Cable. A Manhattan federal judge has ordered the company to pay the woman $229,500, reports Reuters.
The calls to her cellphone, which were all made in less than a year, were actually meant for someone else. “The calls were made through an ‘interactive voice response’ system meant for customers who were late paying bills,” the report says.
They were made to Araceli King but were meant for a man who had King’s cellphone number before her.
“We can all agree that automated robocalls are an annoying interruption,” wrote Ashlee Kieler for Consumerist.com. “But you know what’s worse? Receiving those automated calls meant for someone else, telling the company to place you on the Do Not Call list and then continuing to receive a total of 153 prerecorded messages.”
As Reuters reported: “Time Warner Cable countered that it was not liable to King under the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, a law meant to curb robocall and telemarketing abuses, because it believed it was calling Perez, who had consented to the calls. But in awarding triple damages of $1,500 per call for willfully violating that law, U.S. District Judge Alvin Hellerstein said ‘a responsible business’ would have tried harder to find Perez and address the problem.”
King deserves a fist bump for fighting against being harassed. It’s a good example of standing up for yourself and not standing for crazy corporate behavior.
To read more about your rights, click this link.
MasterCard is launching a pilot program that will use facial scans in yet another effort to thwart credit card criminals.
“The new generation, which is into selfies . . . I think they’ll find it cool. They’ll embrace it,” Ajay Bhalla, who’s in charge of coming up with innovative solutions for MasterCard’s security challenges, told CNNMoney.com.
And how will this new form of fraud prevention work? Here’s how Jose Pagliery of CNNMoney explained the security measure:
— You download the MasterCard phone app.
— You will be prompted for authorization.
— Using a facial recognition measure, you look into the phone and blink as it takes your image. The blinking is to ensure that a crook doesn’t just hold up a picture of you.
— The facial recognition scan will convert your image into computer code of 1s and 0s.
“The information would transmit securely and remain safe on the company’s computer servers,” Pagliery wrote.
But security experts aren’t feeling the safety. They worry such data will tempt hackers. Me, too.
What do you think of using a selfie to combat credit card fraud? Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name, city and state. Put “Selfie” in the subject line.
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Concerned about your retirement? Well, more help is here.
In The Washington Post’s continued effort to provide useful personal finance information, Rodney A. Brooks, the former personal finance editor and columnist for USA Today, has joined our team to write specifically about retirement issues.
Brooks is author of “Is One Million Dollars Enough: A Guide to Planning for and Living Through a Successful Retirement.”
You can follow him on Twitter at @Perfiguy.
He had a great first column recently on the best age to start collecting Social Security. What he found may surprise you.
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