Internet Explorer Security Flaw – How You Can Protect Yourself

Date April 30, 2014

Microsoft has acknowledged a security flaw in its Internet Explorer browser that could put online banking users at risk. Microsoft confirmed on Saturday that a security vulnerability exists in versions 6 through 11 of Internet Explorer, which is used by about one in four online consumers.

Microsoft describes the flaw as a remote code execution vulnerability. This means that a hacker who took advantage of the flaw could manipulate code from a remote server that fooled unsuspecting users into clicking on malicious links. Microsoft says it has so far seen “limited attacks” exploiting the vulnerability. The software company is working to quickly develop patches to fix this broken bit of code and push the fixes to all users of the affected browsers.

Unfortunately, if you are still using Windows XP, there will not be a fix. According to Forbes, approximately 25 percent of people still use Windows XP, and Microsoft ended tech support for XP earlier this month.

Until they get it fixed, here’s a couple things you can do to avoid falling victim to the security flaw:

  • Change your browser – Until the security patch is in place, you can start using another browser, such as Firefox or Chrome.
  • Run IE in “Enhanced Protected Mode” –  Click here for instructions on how to do this.

You can get more information on the security flaw here. Please share this with your friends and family as soon as possible to avoid any problems.

5 Ways to Prepare to Pay for College

Date April 8, 2014

Paying for college is one of the costliest, yet most invaluable, expenses a parent will ever take on. According to recent data from the College Board, the cost of tuition and fees at public, four-year in-state schools is currently $18,391 per year, while annual rates at private, nonprofit schools average $40,917. Should your child graduate in four years, you’re looking at paying $73,564 or $163,668. (Never mind money for food, clothing, entertainment, and extracurriculars)

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How to Use Your Tax Refund

Date April 1, 2014

It’s that time of year again. No, it’s not the start of spring. It’s tax season! For some, it can be a dreaded time when sending in a tax return also means sending Uncle Sam a sizable check. But for others, it can mean an unexpected payday. The average tax refund in 2014 will total $2,917, according to IRS estimates. Before you run out to spend it all, take a moment to think about what you really need. Here are some money-savvy ways to spend your refund.

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The Benefits of Getting Your Free Credit Report

Date March 12, 2014

Ads offering free credit reports are almost inescapable on television and in other media. But what exactly are credit reports and why should you care about reviewing your file? Familiarizing yourself with your credit report has a number of important, far-reaching benefits.

Why Get a Free Credit Report?

A credit report is a detailed analysis of your current and past credit obligations as they appear on file with each of the nation’s three credit bureaus. The information in each report reflects your overall creditworthiness.

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Don’t Fall Victim to the Netflix Phishing Scam

Date March 4, 2014

If you subscribe to Netflix, please be aware that there is a very serious phishing scam going on right now.

Users being targeted by the scam will see a phony webpage modeled after the Netflix login page. When a user enters Netflix account info, the scam site claims that the user’s Netflix account has been suspended due to “unusual activity” and then provides a fake customer service number. When the user calls that number, a representative on the phone recommends a download of “Netflix support software,” which is actually remote login software that gives the scammers complete access to your computer. The scammers may also ask for copies of photo IDs or credit cards.

What is Phishing? Phishing is the activity of defrauding an online account holder of financial information by posing as a legitimate company. If you are ever contacted (by phone or email) by a company asking for any personal information, or if you are suspicious, always contact that company first to make sure it it legitimate. Most companies won’t contact you asking for personal information, and MCCU will never contact anyone asking for personal information.

Please share this information with your family and friends, and stay aware.

What is a Home Equity Line of Credit and Is It for Me?

Date February 3, 2014

Slowly, quietly — perhaps without you even realizing it – something exceptional has been happening all around you. Your home has likely gained a good deal in value.

The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, a leading measure of U.S. home prices, just reported selected city composite gains of nearly 14% year-over-year, based on data through November 2013.

The Los Angeles area is one of only three metros, including Las Vegas and Phoenix, to have posted 20 or more consecutive monthly gains in home value. Combine that with low inflation — 1.5% in 2013 – and home owners are seeing solid appreciation and rising equity values.

It may be the perfect time to consider a home equity line of credit.

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Help Your Child Open their First Savings Account

Date January 8, 2014

Have you thought about opening a savings account for your child? This milestone can be an invaluable introduction to the world of personal finance and will acquaint your child with the most important aspect of money – saving. Teaching your child about financial responsibility at an early age provides crucial knowledge that can help introduce them to a complex topic; and considering the massive economic problems affecting many Americans, the importance of financial literacy cannot be overstated. Since most school systems spend little time addressing the issue, it’s up to you as a parent to make sure your son or daughter is equipped with adequate knowledge, and opening a savings account is one of the easiest ways to do so.

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New Year, New DMV Laws

Date January 3, 2014

The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is reminding motorists of some of the new laws that will become effective in the new year. The following laws go into effect on January 1, 2014, unless otherwise noted.

Bicycles: Passing Distance. AB 1371 (Bradford), known as the Three Feet for Safety Act, will require a motor vehicle driver passing a bicycle that is proceeding in the same direction to pass with no less than 3 feet between any part of the vehicle and any part of the bicycle or driver. When three feet is not possible, the motor vehicle must slow to a reasonable and prudent speed and only pass when no danger is present to the bicyclist. Failing to do so can incur a fine, regardless of a collision or not. This law will take effect September 16, 2014.

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Target Data Breach: Be Proactive to Prevent Fraud

Date December 19, 2013

The hot topic in the news today is the debit and credit card data breach at Target stores. According to Target, over 40 million debit and credit cards used at their stores between November 27th and December 15th may have been affected.

What does this mean? If you have shopped at a Target in that date range, and used a debit or credit card, you may want to take some steps to not only give yourself peace of mind, but ensure that your card will not be used for fraudulent transactions.

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Win $250 in Our Photo & Video Contest!

Date December 4, 2013

What would you do with an extra $250?

Enter our “I Love MCCU!” Photo & Video Contest today! It’s as easy as 1-2-3!

 

1) Get creative! Write a short poem or haiku, write a jingle, photoshop a photo (see above photo for example), or whatever you want!

2) Upload your entry by January 17, 2014 here!

3) Get your friends to vote for you – share on your Facebook page!

Voting starts January 18th! You don’t have to be a member to win, anyone can enter and win!

It’s easy to do, so don’t wait! Email us with any questions!

 Have fun and enter today!

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