Current Industry News

In Major TCPA Win for Plaintiffs, Ninth Circuit Adopts Broad Definition of Autodialer

In a major victory for plaintiffs pursuing claims related to robocalls and texts, a federal appellate court panel has adopted an expansive view of the legal definition of an autodialer.  Under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, calls made via an “automatic telephone dialing system,” or ATDS, without the receiver’s consent can carry statutory penalties between $500 and $1,500 per violation.  On Thursday a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit found that under the definition of an ATDS outlined in the statute, the devices can include autodialers “with the capacity to dial stored numbers automatically” rather than just those that are able to generate numbers randomly or sequentially.

Freezing your credit is now free

You can now add credit-report freezes to the list of best things in life that are free. As of Friday, consumers won’t have to pay a fee to credit-reporting firms when they want to use a freeze to help protect themselves from identity theft. They would, however, need to contact each of the big three bureaus — Equifax, TransUnion and Experian — to cover all their bases. “I think this is a good partial step,” said John Ulzheimer, a credit expert and president of The Ulzheimer Group in Atlanta.

5 cyber security basics you can’t afford to ignore

The recently discovered vulnerability involving fax lines on HP multi-function devices, termed Faxploit, are a reminder of the importance of fundamental security practices.  I did something a few weeks ago I rarely do: ignore a report about a significant vulnerability. Check Point Software released a very detailed analysis about the possibility of a network being attacked via a fax line. Perhaps it was disbelief, or alert fatigue, but I remember thinking that if a bad actor could attack a network using just a fax line, it was time for me to retire and take up chicken farming. As such, I ignored it for a few days.

Banking: Wells Fargo, Chime, Empower banks fight for millennial accounts

Are you between 21 and 37? Please bank with us.  That’s the message millennials are hearing as the battle between the big banks and fintech companies for their hearts and deposits heats up. The newest entrant in the fray – personal finance app Empower – upped the ante this week by rolling out its mobile bank services, including a fee-free checking account with rewards and a savings account that earns significant larger yields than at the big banks. The move comes shortly after Chase began dangling 60,000 rewards points to get more well-heeled young people to sign up for a premium checking account.

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