Search found 1300 matches

by Blues
Mon Jun 22, 2015 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

I need to correct something I said before. I said that Equifax wouldn't do anything online - I goofed, it was Experian. Equifax was very responsive online. And, when I looked at the opening page of the id theft website (didn't have to dig very deep :oops: ), I found the phone numbers for all three ...
by Blues
Mon Jun 22, 2015 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Isn't the first rule of security clearances that you don't talk about your security clearance? That's the second post on this thread calling out themselves or family members as clearance holders. Yes this is a mostly anonymous website, but given the concerns expressed in this thread, and the known ...
by Blues
Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Identity theft is one obvious consequence, but has anyone considered that those with security clearances may now be targeted while traveling overseas? Including those of us who retired with TS and similar clearances in place. In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes. ...
by Blues
Sun Jun 21, 2015 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

That's not my experience. I think you might have answered one of the ID verification questions incorrectly and that alone will send you to the "mail in" camp. It is a pain to deal with the credit bureaus, but one has to do what's necessary. I had an issue with Experian online, (Equifax, T...
by Blues
Sun Jun 21, 2015 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

I can't recall at the moment if I saw mention of Innovis here or on a different site but they appear to be another agency worth placing the freeze with:

https://www.innovis.com/personal/securityFreeze
by Blues
Sun Jun 21, 2015 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Here is a synopsis by Consumer Reports of some steps to be taken and their opinion (#8 in the list) in regard to paying for identity theft services:

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news ... /index.htm
by Blues
Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Per the IRS: "Alert: The online Get Transcript service is currently unavailable. You may still order transcripts using the Get Transcript by Mail service. We apologize for any inconvenience." I believe that has been the reported status for a few months now...since they realized that the s...
by Blues
Sat Jun 20, 2015 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Well, based upon our discussion here I've instituted a freeze with the big 3 as well as ChexSystems.

Also set up fraud alert status for the missus along with an additional ChexSystems freeze under her SSN.

Thanks again for the motivation as well as the additional info. :beer
by Blues
Sat Jun 20, 2015 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

I would recommend instituting a freeze with the three major services well as CheckSystems. The cost is minimal. A while back I went to open a CD at a local bank and they ran an Equifax report in addition to CheckSystems. I suppose each service flags different behavior. Thank you. I think I'll do so...
by Blues
Sat Jun 20, 2015 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

skepticalobserver wrote:Note that you can institute a freeze with CheckSystems and by doing so block the fraudulent opening of a bank account


If one institutes a freeze with ChexSystems do they still have to do the same with the three major credit monitoring services (Trans Union, Experian, Equifax)?
by Blues
Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OPM breach and credit freeze
Replies: 161
Views: 12676

Re: OPM breach and credit freeze

Haven't been contacted (yet) but have opted for setting up the "fraud alert" (which I believe covers at least 90 days by the three credit monitoring agencies). Not sure what further steps we will take if / when we are contacted.
by Blues
Sat Jun 13, 2015 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chromebooks- What is the lure?
Replies: 104
Views: 7791

Re: Chromebooks- What is the lure?

Thanks Shadow Dancer. I installed Adblock Plus and Disconntect. HTTPS Everywhere had some review that it was a memory hog. I'm too lazy to use a Password Manager at this stage. As I mentioned I don't travel with my Chromebook but only with my Surface Pro 3. Thanks for the information. Lynette I'd r...
by Blues
Fri Jun 12, 2015 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chromebooks- What is the lure?
Replies: 104
Views: 7791

Re: Chromebooks- What is the lure?

Simplicity. Speed. Quiet...and freedom from incessant (and often conflicting) operating system and security updates. (And then there's the low price as an added bonus.) I was very skeptical about replacing my older XP system with Chromebook but I have come to love it. About the only thing I use my X...
by Blues
Tue May 26, 2015 7:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ally Savings and MMA
Replies: 23
Views: 3116

Re: Ally Savings and MMA

Another vote for Ally. We've had good experiences with the MM account as well as a handful of cd's over the past few years.
by Blues
Wed May 20, 2015 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Chromebook 2015
Replies: 54
Views: 5107

Re: Best Chromebook 2015

Can you do without virus and malware programs? That would be great also. There are no AV's for Chromebook (that I'm aware of) but I do use a very few extensions which can enhance security. (The extensions require little or no user input once set.) Adblock Plus can, depending on the subscriptions yo...
by Blues
Wed May 20, 2015 7:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Chromebook 2015
Replies: 54
Views: 5107

Re: Best Chromebook 2015

tc101 wrote:Has anyone used a Chromebook touch screen?


I've had the Acer C720P for about 15 months and it has been virtually flawless.
by Blues
Sun May 17, 2015 7:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"The Whites" by Richard Price (as Harry Brandt)

...and...

"Where All Light Tends To Go" by David Joy
by Blues
Mon May 11, 2015 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which Company Do You Have Auto Insurance With?
Replies: 105
Views: 6005

Re: Which Company Do You Have Auto Insurance With?

Amica (also home, umbrella)
by Blues
Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

gkaplan wrote:
Blues wrote:"The Harder They Come" by T.C. Boyle (My first by this author.)


I'm reading The Tortilla Curtain by the same writer, my first by T. C. Boyle, as well.


Let me know what you think of it. I'll do the same.
by Blues
Tue Apr 28, 2015 7:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"The Harder They Come" by T.C. Boyle (My first by this author.)
by Blues
Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"Entry Island" by Peter May.
by Blues
Tue Apr 21, 2015 7:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."
Replies: 146
Views: 15948

Re: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."

The 30/70 ratio of equities to fixed income has been our standard for the past few years. It works well for us and has allowed us to both grow the portfolio to new highs as well as sleep like babies at night. (Retired for 12+ years now with no debt and sufficient "guaranteed" income to mee...
by Blues
Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV show recommendations?
Replies: 351
Views: 150574

Re: TV show recommendations?

From a retired big city cop, The Wire is the only realistic Cop show ever on TV. Hill Street Blues was close A great show available on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video is the British series "Prime Suspect" with Helen Mirren. As a retired fed myself, I'd have to say that this was one of the ...
by Blues
Sat Apr 11, 2015 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Propane Heating and Septic Tanks
Replies: 36
Views: 2176

Re: Propane Heating and Septic Tanks

Since most folks have already (and very well) covered the pros, cons and things to be aware of I'll just state that we have had going on 12 years of essentially trouble free living with propane heating, well and septic here in the (beautiful) Blue Ridge mountains of western NC. The higher cost of pr...
by Blues
Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2 commas and mortgage-free
Replies: 33
Views: 4868

Re: 2 commas and mortgage-free

Congrats. It's a great "club" to belong to. (We also owe a debt to the good people on this site for their assistance with our own success story. :sharebeer )
by Blues
Fri Mar 27, 2015 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"Alex" by Pierre Lemaitre
"J" by Howard Jacobson
by Blues
Tue Mar 03, 2015 8:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Taylor Larimore Honored
Replies: 59
Views: 6169

Re: Taylor Larimore Honored

Congrats to a very worthy gentleman and (mostly) unsung hero. :sharebeer
by Blues
Sat Feb 28, 2015 12:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International increase in Target Retirement & LifeStrategy
Replies: 235
Views: 26491

Re: International increase in Target Retirement & LifeStrate

However, this does show that there is no such thing as "invest and forget." You still should pay attention to what is going on TR fund or not. I agree. At first I was a bit concerned about the allocation changes...but when I crunched the actual numbers for our investment in one of the LS ...
by Blues
Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: electric toothbrush
Replies: 38
Views: 2619

Re: electric toothbrush

This is the Sonicare model I use (as recommended by our dental hygienist and dentist): http://www.amazon.com/Philips-Sonicare-HX6511-50-Rechargeable/dp/B004M1BO3U It is super easy to clean and maintain and it's never given a lick of trouble. Gets a bit over two weeks on a charge. As you can see, the...
by Blues
Mon Feb 16, 2015 6:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Improving the Lifestrategy Funds
Replies: 63
Views: 5852

Re: Improving the Lifestrategy Funds

msi wrote:Switch them to Admiral shares.


As much it pains me to agree with a Flyers fan...I agree. :beer (Lifelong Rangers fan here.)

The ER is quite reasonable and I have no kick but Admiral shares would be lovely. (Otherwise, I'd leave 'em alone. They're fine as they are.)
by Blues
Sat Feb 07, 2015 8:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TaxACT Ultimate - $12
Replies: 2
Views: 563

Re: TaxACT Ultimate - $12

Excellent price...too bad it doesn't appear to be for the 2015 tax year. (Though I imagine a similar deal will be upcoming within a few months.)
by Blues
Sat Jan 31, 2015 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filed your 2014 Federal Taxes yet?
Replies: 60
Views: 4437

Re: Filed your 2014 Federal Taxes yet?

E-filed last Saturday, the 24th. The state was paid with the e-file and the federal refund was received yesterday after (only) 6 days.
by Blues
Sat Jan 31, 2015 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refund from the IRS? Why?
Replies: 51
Views: 5248

Re: Refund from the IRS? Why?

Surprisingly, when I checked the IRS' "Refund Status" site just this morning it indicated that my refund had been approved and should be rec'd by my financial institution this Friday. All the more surprising since I only e-filed (via TaxAct Online) this past Saturday. This would be less t...
by Blues
Fri Jan 30, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with
Replies: 79
Views: 5098

Re: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with

Warren Buffet warned: "To make money they didn't need, they risked what they did have and did need." Once you have accumulated a bit more than what you think will be more than enough, why invest in stocks at all? That's a great quote! I would not go to 0% stocks myself. I want some stocks...
by Blues
Fri Jan 30, 2015 8:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with
Replies: 79
Views: 5098

Re: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with

I'll be the odd man out in this survey. We're currently at about 28% equities. The plan is to stay in the 25 - 30% range. The reason for remaining on the low side is that we have neither debt nor outstanding obligations and our "guaranteed" sources of income in retirement are more than suf...
by Blues
Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking of switching from Turbo-Tax
Replies: 26
Views: 2006

Re: Thinking of switching from Turbo-Tax

I switched from TT to TaxAct years ago. I rarely if ever use the "interview" process and opt to directly input data to the applicable forms instead. ("Quick Entry" to forms is available on both the desktop and online versions.) Just curious - what's the advantage of doing it tha...
by Blues
Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking of switching from Turbo-Tax
Replies: 26
Views: 2006

Re: Thinking of switching from Turbo-Tax

I switched from TT to TaxAct years ago. I rarely if ever use the "interview" process and opt to directly input data to the applicable forms instead. ("Quick Entry" to forms is available on both the desktop and online versions.) I have never had any reason to regret my decision to...
by Blues
Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amazon Prime - good deal or calculated conditioning
Replies: 50
Views: 3291

Re: Amazon Prime - good deal or calculated conditioning

We find Prime to be quite useful as we avail ourselves of many of its benefits...shipping, video, music and very occasionally the lending library. Considering that one can usually find a discount on the subscription offered at least once annually, it offers good bang for the buck imho. Beyond the va...
by Blues
Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refund from the IRS? Why?
Replies: 51
Views: 5248

Re: Refund from the IRS? Why?

Surprisingly, when I checked the IRS' "Refund Status" site just this morning it indicated that my refund had been approved and should be rec'd by my financial institution this Friday. All the more surprising since I only e-filed (via TaxAct Online) this past Saturday. This would be less th...
by Blues
Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refund from the IRS? Why?
Replies: 51
Views: 5248

Re: Refund from the IRS? Why?

Though I ordinarily don't mind getting a refund, this thread has motivated me to pare down my withholding so that I should be just a bit over or under for next year. (But not subject to any penalty & interest.) No sense making an interest free loan to Uncle if he can't be reliably counted upon t...
by Blues
Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D
Replies: 223
Views: 32570

Re: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D

The Intuit Mess up -- picked up on USA Today: http://americasmarkets.usatoday.com/2015/01/22/turbotax-admits-mistake-pays-customers/ My sense is that they didn't expect the blow back and so are caught on their heels. I'm fine moving forward with TaxACT although I've used Turbotax for over a decade....
by Blues
Wed Jan 21, 2015 8:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "When you've won the game, stop playing"
Replies: 83
Views: 9364

Re: "When you've won the game, stop playing"

There's a huge difference between these scenarios: 1) Your RLE is $20,000, you're 65, and your retirement account is $1 million. In this case, you've won the game, but need to avoid both a market meltdown and runaway inflation. The article mentions people who had the game won, but then lost it. The...
by Blues
Wed Jan 21, 2015 8:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "When you've won the game, stop playing"
Replies: 83
Views: 9364

Re: "When you've won the game, stop playing"

Dr. Bill's approach to risk management has been a tremendous help over the years with both our understanding and approach to investing as well as the results thereof. We are happily in the "won the game" category and have been able to reduce equity exposure to a very comfortable level whic...
by Blues
Tue Jan 20, 2015 8:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Treasury Direct Question
Replies: 6
Views: 610

Re: Treasury Direct Question

The TD website is just a joy. It's like playing "Russian Roulette". :oops: Half the time I go to log on, it may or may not respond with a message that my account number is not valid. Then I'll reinput the exact same info and it'll go through. (Either then or an hour later after I've used u...
by Blues
Thu Jan 15, 2015 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxact ultimate version $6 - DEAL OVER
Replies: 46
Views: 3220

Re: Taxact ultimate version $6

Blues... That is interesting. Are you saying you think it's a scam? Obviously this is personal information we would all be putting in. I hesitate to answer one way or the other since I have no info other than the reply rec'd from TaxAct. Since I had no intention of going through the time and bother...
by Blues
Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxact ultimate version $6 - DEAL OVER
Replies: 46
Views: 3220

Re: Taxact ultimate version $6

FWIW...I contacted TaxAct customer service as I had recently paid up front for the online version and wanted to see if I was entitled to a partial credit. (In order to use their telephone tech support you must have a paid product, which is why I prepaid before filing. There was a glitch I wanted to ...
by Blues
Wed Jan 14, 2015 8:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alternatives to TurboTax
Replies: 26
Views: 3333

Re: Alternatives to TurboTax

TaxAct. Switched from TT about 10 years ago and haven't looked back.
by Blues
Sat Jan 10, 2015 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel Victoria If you enjoy the book, as I did, I strongly recommend that you try "Bring Up The Bodies" which I enjoyed just as much as (if not more than) "Wolf Hall". I am eagerly awaiting "The Mirror And The Light", the final book of the trilogy.
by Blues
Fri Jan 09, 2015 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D
Replies: 223
Views: 32570

Re: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D

I'm glad to see them get their comeuppance (at least to some degree). As I had mentioned previously, I was all in with Quicken and TT for several years until their business model proved over and over that the needs, wants and wallets of their customer base were low priority and took a back seat. I h...
by Blues
Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 812
Views: 135919

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"A Death In Vienna" by Daniel Silva.

Go to advanced search