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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Data Breach Here, Data Breach There, Data Breach Everywhere! | Ed Mierzwinski

UPDATED 10 June Re DHS Breach: If you shop with plastic, have health insurance, pay taxes, work for the federal government, or (fill in blank) you’re at risk of a data breach. And with so much information about you already available on the Internet, it’s best not to select easy-search security questions like “Where were you born?” or answers like “Pizza.” What’s your best defense against identity theft? No, it isn’t credit monitoring, it’s a security freeze.

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How Companies Turn Your Facebook Activity Into a Credit Score

This story in The Nation explains our work challenging the way data brokers use "black box," or secret, algorithms to make scoring decisions that may violate the law and deny credit opportunities. This work was also the subject of our recent livestream event featuring Professor Frank Pasquale and his new book, "The Black Box Society." We've now posted an archive of that event, in 3 chapters on our Youtube page.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Event 5/11 re new book on black box decisionmaking & consumers | Ed Mierzwinski

UPDATED TO CONFIRM CFPB Speaker. We are hosting an event Monday, 5/11, from 9am-noon ET to discuss a new book, The Black Box Society, with author Frank Pasquale. Click Keep Reading to RSVP to attend in person or to watch the livestream. While credit bureaus have long functioned as black box gatekeepers to opportunity, panelists will discuss the growing use of more and more, even less transparent black boxes to categorize consumers in the digital economy.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Consumer Protection

PIRG Commends Supporters of Duckworth Amendment to Protect Our Troops From High-Cost Loans

Last night, on a 32-30 bipartisan vote, the House Armed Services Committee supported the Tammy Duckworth (IL) amendment to strike language from the National Defense Authorization Act that would have delayed Pentagon-proposed improvements to the Military Lending Act of 2007. It's a critical victory for servicemembers, veterans and their families, although the fight to protect our troops from high-cost loans will continue.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

U.S. House Considers Delay To Financial Protections for Servicemembers, Veterans | Ed Mierzwinski

(UPDATED 30 April): Last year the Department of Defense proposed needed improvements to the 2007 Military Lending Act, since high-cost lenders were exploiting loopholes to evade the law's 36% APR cap on loans to servicemembers to make loans at 400% APR or more, harming military families and threatening unit preparedness to defend the nation. Now, days before a committee vote, predatory lenders have succeeded in convincing House Armed Services Committee leaders to insert language into the National Defense Authorization Act that would delay the DoD regulations up to a year while needless, redundant studies are prepared. Only in Washington.

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PSNC, Piedmont natural gas cases could alter way rates are changed

When North Carolina natural gas customers get their November bills, they’re likely to see a slight increase due to rate changes that Piedmont Natural Gas and PSNC Energy have pending before state regulators.

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Long slashes auto rates

Insurance Commissioner Jim Long is leaving office with a bang, ordering a whopping 16.1 percent decrease in auto insurance premiums.

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Group fails to block Duke nuke plant

Environmentalists trying to block Duke Energy Corp.'s new nuclear plant project in Cherokee County, S.C., were denied on one front today.

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N.C. to weigh alternative to Duke's Save-A-Watt

N.C. regulators have agreed to consider a proposal for an independent energy-conservation program offered by opponents of Duke Energy Carolinas’ Save-A-Watt program, which would give Duke and its customers incentives to cut the need for power.

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News Release | NCPIRG | Consumer Protection

Citizen groups file for independent energy saving program, NC SAVE$

Raleigh, NC.  Today, over one dozen consumer, senior, justice, and environmental groups descended upon the Utilities Commission to support a legal petition for an independently-run energy efficiency program.  The move comes during the second round of hearings on Duke Energy’s controversial energy efficiency proposal, Save-a-Watt, which began today. 

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