Is there anything you can do to secure credit card transactions made over a smartphone? Darren Robb/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images In March 2011, the CEO of VeriFone launched a bold assault -- some might call it a smear campaign -- against his company's competitor, Square. Both companies sell devices and services that allow individuals to take credit card payments from others through a smartphone. VeriFone's Douglas Bergeron claimed that the Square was not encrypting credit card information before transmitting it into a smartphone. In essence, claimed Bergeron, the Square device, which was being given away for free with the service, put credit card information into the hands of skimmers. All a hacker had to do was develop an application that would receive the unencrypted data, scan your card and then use the information to make fraudulent purchases. Whether this attack was legitimate is a matter of debate. Square claimed to have met the Payment Card Industry Data Security … [Read more...] about Are mobile credit card readers secure?
You'd protect your computer from hackers and other online predators, and it may be time to consider the security of your smart phone. Yagi Studio/Getty Images Unfortunately, consumers aren't the only ones making the shift to mobile devices. Malicious hackers and identity thieves are following close behind. As more and more people use their smartphones and other mobile devices to do online banking, pay bills, and store critical personal and business information, more and more bad guys are trying to crack into this mobile gold mine. Mobile security will be the key to winning the war against this new generation of cyber thieves. Mobile security can come in many shapes and forms. Some protections are built directly into the device you're using. For example, the iPhone ships with a default Autolock feature that requires the user to enter a password after a few minutes of inactivity [source: Sacco]. Other mobile security protections are built into the network, such as strong … [Read more...] about How Mobile Security Works
Social Security gives us assurance against certain social conditions that may occur, such as retirement or the sudden death of a bread winner. It's funded through dedicated payroll taxes known as the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) [source: SSA]. Everyone must apply for a Social Security number, which becomes his identification number. You will need this number every time you apply for any official document, such as a driver's license, passport, etc. You will need it when you want to open a bank account. It will also become your personal Tax Identification Number for use by the Internal Revenue Service [source: IRS]. Should your Social Security card get lost or be stolen, you will need to replace it. The good news is that there's no charge for getting a replacement Social Security card. Here's how to get a copy of your Social Security card. Complete an SS-5 application for a Social Security card. You can obtain a copy of the application online at … [Read more...] about How to Get a Copy Of Your Social Security Card
The purpose of Social Security is to provide retirement and disability income to workers and their dependants. Social Security provides a guaranteed income to nearly 53 million Americans who have no income due to retirement, disability or death. In order to be eligible for retirement benefits a person must have enough credits, i.e. dollars that were contributed to the fund. The credits come from the Social Security tax you pay on your earnings [source: AFL-CIO]. A person who is eligible to receive Social Security benefits must file an application with the Social Security Office. We will now discuss how to file an application. The quickest way to apply for Social Security benefits is to fill in the application form online. You can apply as soon as you are 61 years and 9 months old, and can start receiving benefits as soon as you are 62 years old. The whole application process takes about 15 minutes if it's done online, at www.socialsecurity.gov. You can also apply by telephone or you … [Read more...] about How to Apply for Social Security
President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act on Aug. 14, 1935, and the first Social Security taxes were collected in January 1937. The first Social Security payments were made that same month and regular ongoing monthly benefits began in January 1940. William Thomas Cain/Getty Images Everyone in the United States who receives a Social Security check will get more money in 2019. The 2.8 percent bump is the result of a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) prompted by rising inflation rates. The 2.8 percent increase, which amounts to about $39 per month for the average retired worker, is the largest in seven years, according to the Social Security Administration. It will affect about 70 million Social Security recipients, who range from retirees to disabled workers, and surviving spouses and children. The increase is notable because it follows years of low inflation, and therefore, little adjustment to Social Security payments. As this increase is set to take place, many … [Read more...] about Who Decides When Your Social Security Check Increases?