News from the Reference Desk Category: Consumer

Money Smart Week Goes Virtual!

Money Smart week, originally scheduled for April 4-11 this year, was canceled like almost everything else due to the COVID-19 precautions.  Financial literacy doesn’t stop being relevant, however, and so in an expanded celebration of Financial Literacy Month all April, the good folks behind MSW have created useful, educational, and insightful webinars on various topics. Each topic is uniquely relevant to our current environment and is pre-recorded so you can view them when it is most convenient for you! Just click on the links below:

-Take Control of Your Finances

-Inside America’s “Financial Diaries”

-Money and Budgeting for Kids!

-Medigap Insurance: How to Pick the Right Plan
Another canceled MSW program that will give you insights into which plan is right for you and how to use the tools available at MPPL to access related information.

 

Coronavirus and Consumer Reports

consumer_reports_bannerThe Library subscribes to Consumer Reports. Besides being a great resources for reviews on products, it is also a good place to go to find out how to stay safe from coronavirus and the predators who seek to take advantage of you during this emergency. Current articles discuss phishing scams, misinformation in social media, and security issues with Zoom and other video conferencing apps. You can also research what is and is not effective for disinfecting your home (hint: use bleach, not tea tree oil).

Five ways to recognize a Social Security scam

Currently, Social Security scams are the most commonly reported type of fraud and scam, and according to the Social Security Administration’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG), these scams continue to evolve. The OIG is now warning the public that scammers are making phone calls and then following up with emails containing falsified documents aimed at convincing people to pay.

You may have received one of these calls – either a recorded voice or a person falsely claiming to be a government employee, warning you of an issue with your Social Security number, account, or benefits, including identity theft. The caller may threaten arrest or other legal action, or they may offer to increase benefits, protect your assets, or resolve identity theft if you provide payment using a retail gift card, cash, wire transfer, internet currency such as Bitcoin, or a pre-paid debit card.

Read more on what to do HERE

Spanish Language Resources and Tools from the CFPB

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2018, the Hispanic population in the U.S. was made up of just under 60 million people, or nearly one-fifth of the nation’s population. The Consumer Financial protection Bureau (CFPB) has a selection of financial education tools and resources for our nation’s diverse Hispanic and Latino community that are available in both English and Spanish. It recognizes the great variation in the needs, interests, and financial well-being of Hispanic and Latino households. Its resources are intended to be useful for individuals and families during many different stages of their economic life, as they pursue the goals and aspirations that are important to them.

Back to School with Good Money Habits

It’s back-to-school time again! MPPL wants to help young patrons, in alliance with their parents, learn about good money habits. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)’s Money as You Grow webpage has tips and activities that can help grow the money skills, habits, and attitudes of children of all ages. Money as You Grow Bookshelf materials helps parents and caregivers bring money topics to life during the time they are reading with their children. This program provides a list of books that are commonly found in libraries or bookstores for children ages four to ten. There are free downloadable reading guides for each book that help parents and caregivers explain key money ideas, and includes questions and activities that can help children understand and use the key ideas in daily life. Take a look and see what we have available!