If you’ve got a complaint about an airline, or you want to find out more about whether your complaint is valid, oh boy is there a treat in store for you! Earlier this month, the DOT launched a redesigned consumer aviation website at airconsumer.dot.gov. The goal of the site is “to make it as easy as possible for consumers to find the information they need to make their air travel experience as smooth and hassle-free as possible.” [More]
We love free, and we love attempts to make people savvier about personal finance, so we really like this new personal finance website from the University of Idaho. It’s got all the basics covered, and there are things like checklists and downloadable worksheets so you can practice what they’re preaching. Some of the information is geared specifically to Idaho residents, but for the most part this is useful content that anyone can take advantage of.
When Comcast activates the emergency alert system, Jim’s cable box snaps into action and tunes itself to QVC. The locked cable box refuses to tune to any other channel, so Jim is left wondering what emergency information he’s missing while staring at the latest deals on cubic zirconia bracelets.
We’re starting to think Amex doesn’t take this whole “data security” thing very seriously. First they confused a customer, and us, a few months ago with their random confirmation phone call, where they demanded a customer turn over bank account information over the phone without giving him a way to verify they were really Amex. Now a reader says the company has “for years” been sending him someone else’s account info via email, including the customer’s name and the last 5 digits of his account number. J.R. writes, “Seriously, I’ve seen better security on a video game forum.”
Self-proclaimed leading contemporary critic of the Internet Andrew Keen says that increased broadband access will lead to a second Holocaust. Seriously.
We first discovered the very useful FeedFlix back in May, and since then the site’s been updated to present more data on how well you utilize your Netflix membership. By pasting in any of your private Netflix RSS feeds, you’ll see a breakdown of your activity stats, like how long on average you keep titles and your average cost-per-rental. A handy new feature is the “email alerts” function, where you’ll receive a weekly reminder if you’ve kept a title past a certain number of days. We’ve included a screenshot below.
Consumerist reader trinidon2k says try this number:
An anonymous tipster sent us the following information today on how to reach the executive level at CVS. Remember, don’t use this to be a jerk to anyone—use it when you have a valid complaint that you can’t get resolved through the recommended paths.
There’s not a lot of contact info on the web for Greyhound or its executives, but one determined customer has put a lot of effort into documenting what there is. Here are mailing addresses and a few unpublished phone numbers for people in the Greyhound executive offices.
You need the express written consent of Major League Baseball to do pretty much anything to a baseball game, but does your pizza place need your permission to sell your personal information (name, address and phone number) to the highest bidder? Take a guess. The answer is inside. Cheating is easy, but in poor taste. (For the purposes of this quiz, you live in California.)
Pssst, wanna make an easy $20? Just give all your bank account and personal data over to ConsumerSay, a consumer opinion and behavior tracking firm owned by Lightspeed Research. Jen, who sometimes fills out surveys for freebies and cash, got an email from them offering her $20 for only 5 to 10 minutes of her time. Oh, and all of her financial transaction data.
Over at ZDnet an interesting point has been raised: Why does Build-A-Bear workshop need to know so much information about your children? Just to help return a lost bear? Should kids be encouraged to give out so much information?
If you’re serious about keeping your personal information safe, then make sure you wipe your computer’s hard drive with something like Eraser or Darik’s Boot and Nuke (DBAN) (both free) before handing it off to a friend, family member, or random stranger.
“They are the secret language of the gadget world: mysterious icons that are printed, stamped, and engraved on every electronic device and the packaging it comes in.” Wired explains the meanings behind eight commonly used symbols you find on today’s electronics. [Wired]