News from the Reference Desk Category: Web Resource

Protecting Seniors from Scams in Assisted Living

Financial fraud and exploitation of seniors seems even more rampant than ever. This population, more vulnerable than others due to an uneasy relationship to rapidly changing technology in the internet age, is often targeted by those unscrupulous folk looking for an easily duped victim. While most of us undoubtedly do our best to protect our loved ones close to us, what happens when they’re no longer as much under our wing? The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is here to help, with a handy manual designed to offer tips and strategies for caregivers and others responsible for the safety and well-being of those residing in assisted living facilities. Protecting residents from financial exploitation: A manual for assisted living and nursing facilities is published by the CFPB and provides practical advice on how to help protect seniors from falling victim to common scams or fraudulent schemes. Some of the most common include:

  • -The resident receives news about a prize or other windfall that requires payment of fees or taxes up front.
    -The resident is pressured to keep good news a secret until a transaction is complete or risk losing out on this one-time opportunity.
    -A caller constantly seeks more information and pressures the resident to comply.
    -A third party claims to be from a government agency, financial institution or other entity and asks for information that they should already have. A resident receives a lot of mail or email for sweepstakes, contests or other sources suggesting that he or she has already been scammed.

Review and download your copy today, and join the fight to protect our seniors!

Avoiding Bitcoin and Virtual Currency Fraud

Virtual currencies like Bitcoin are the newest buzzword for more and more investors–even if you can’t exactly explain what a Bitcoin “is,” you may still recognize the potential for return. However, as with all new technologies and financial endeavors, the fraudsters are keeping pace in their unrelenting mission to separate you from your money! One place to start before taking the Bitcoin plunge is at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. As Bitcoin and other virtual currencies are classified as commodities, the CFTC is the government agency tasked with regulating them. Subsequently, they provide a wealth of information on their website HERE for consumers to help avoid being defrauded and make safe investments in legitimate companies. If you’re considering getting into this financial area, cruise over and check it out!

Get Smart About Money in 2018!

Well, the holidays are over and it’s the start of another year–and another opportunity to reevaluate your financial life and practices, woo-hoo! The good news is that it just got a lot easier, thanks to all the wonderful resources and tools available at Smart About Money (SAM). Smart About Money is one of the many programs of the National Endowment for Financial Education®. NEFE® is an independent, nonprofit foundation committed to educating Americans on a broad range of financial topics and empowering them to make positive and sound decisions to reach their financial goals. They offer tips, strategies and information on diverse topics like crisis and fraud, saving and investing, spending and borrowing, housing and transportation, taxes and more.

Click through and take a look at some of the tools like the Life Values Quiz, designed to help you better understand how and why you make financial decisions. Knowing your own habits and patterns is the first step to making positive changes in your financial life!

Announcing Rosetta Stone

I am pleased to announce MPPL now has a subscription to the well-known language learning resource, Rosetta Stone Library Solutions. This package features all 30 languages with all levels available to you. From experience, this resource works best an app on a mobile device though is still effective on a desktop computer if you have a microphone. There is a trick to opening the app after you have downloaded it so please read the instructions on our Library Apps webpage. You’ll get the hang of it because the steps should be easy for anyone with the motivation to learn a new language.

Spice is the Variety of Life

If you think that spice is the variety of life and love international cuisine, AtoZ World Food has you covered. Our newest web resource contains traditional recipes for 174 countries in all course categories: appetizers, soups, salads, breads, main courses, side dishes, dessert, and beverages. That’s over 6,000 recipes and 9,000 food photos. And if you’re interested in beer, that are over 750 world beer reviews!

LexisNexis Legal Research Training Session May 18

LexisNexis, one of the most popular online resources, is a legal reference powerhouse. A representative from LexisNexis will discuss how to search state and federal cases, statues, codes and regulations, and law reviews and journals. You’ll get a demonstration of the product’s features, discover search strategies, and have a chance to ask questions.

Thursday, May 18, 2017
7:00 p.m. in the Training Room
Please register: Legal Research with LexisNexis

Making Rare Materials Visible to the World

Scanning all kinds of material has become a common task thanks to the availability of devices like Flip-Pal and special phone apps like Pic Scanner for iphones or Google PhotoScan for android phones.  But what do you do with a book that is nearly 6 feet by 7 1/2 feet when opened?  The British Library recently faced this challenge when it digitized its copy of the 1660 Klencke Atlas, one of the world’s largest books.  The library made a video of the process available on YouTube recently. The Klencke Atlas contains 41 wall-sized, extremely rare maps.  These maps reveal what Dutch cartographers knew about the world during the High Renaissance period.  The public domain images of the atlas are part of the British Library’s Picturing Places online resource.

If you are looking for a digitized collection of items closer to home, go the the MPPL digital collection Dimensions of Life in Mount Prospect.  This collection includes an image of an 1873 map of Mount Prospect.

Being Irish

On St. Patrick’s Day it is often said in the United States that everyone is a little Irish. But how many people of Irish descent are there in the United States? An exact figure is a challenge to determine but the United States Census figures project it to be around 33 million. Here is a Census Bureau report issued in 2004 which describes the results of an ancestry question on the 2000 Census. An article from the website Irish Central compares figures from the 2000 Census to those from the American Community Survey in 2014. It also explains why it is difficult to pin down exact figures regarding ethnicity. If you want to see if there is an Irish ancestor in your background, there are resources at the Mount Prospect Public Library which can help. Look through this list of Irish genealogy books in our collection. Investigate the genealogy online resources Ancestry Library Edition, Heritage Quest, and Find My Past. If you would like some help with this research, please come to the Research Services Desk and set up an appointment with the genealogy librarian or make an appointment online. Whatever your background, wear a little green and have some fun on St. Patrick’s Day!

Many New Web Resources

This week MPPL rolled out a number of new web resources from Gale.

  • Testing & Education Reference Center features test prep exams, detailed information on colleges and universities, graduate and professional programs, scholarships and awards.
  • Gale General OneFile is an article database. You can search it directly here, or search it with our other article databases in Article Finder.
  • Gale Business Insights: Global is designed for professionals, entrepreneurs, students, and general researchers, delivering comprehensive international business intelligence, compiled into a logical, usable context.
  • Gale Small Business Resource Center covers all major areas of starting and operating a business: financing, management, marketing, human resources, franchising, accounting, taxes and more. Startups, established businesses, and business students alike can find answers from its mobile responsive experience.

Exploring Demographics with Our New Web Resource

If you like demographics, then we have a great new resource for you, Social Explorer. You can access over 200 years of government data and see it displayed in maps. It’s an intriguing way to discover trends in aging, race, income, employment, election results, health, and crime data. These are but a few of the options. I’ve been comparing where I live in Chicago to where I always said I wanted to live, Nome, Alaska. Where I live now, there are 33,334 people per square mile, compared to 5,695 in the area around MPPL, but only 5.4 in Nome. It must be very quiet. And what is really neat is that much of this data can be compared over time, and some European and UK information is also available.