‘Banks Never Ask That’ quiz helps customers outsmart scammers

Will a bank ever ask you to verify your birthday and social security number? No! A banking quiz seeks to help customers outsmart scammers.

Think you could spot a banking scam? Don’t be so sure.

Many people are falling for fake phone calls, texts, and emails that appear to come from their bank. Thousands of bank customers have lost millions of dollars to banking scams, so now the nation’s banks are rolling out a new tool to help you spot a scam.

Questions like “did you get good grades in school?” or “have a professional job?” are examples of tricks bank customers have fallen prey to.

“I got a phone call from my bank, and I knew it was my bank because I recognized their phone number,” victim Sarah Robb said.

However, it wasn’t really her bank. It was a scammer who drained Sarah’s checking account within minutes.

In recent months, Corinthia fell for a slick email claiming a problem with her account.

“It began with an email to me, and it said $499 was going to be withdrawn from my account,” Corinthia said.

But it was really a phishing scam and before Corinthia knew it, she was out $1,600.

The American Bankers Association wants to stop this growing fraud.

Next time you get onto your bank’s website or check their phone app, look for a little button that says, “would your bank really ask that?” It will take you to a quiz, and some of those questions just might stump you.

RELATED: IRS sending out letters: About one in three people will get a request for personal information

RELATED: Jury duty scammer pretended to be a deputy to lure family out of home, family says

The Banks Never Ask That website tests if you can outsmart online scammers.

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Chinese App Helps Users Bypass Great Firewall

(Bloomberg) — One Chinese app briefly gave the country’s internet users access to long-banned websites like Facebook Inc. and Google, setting off speculation about the future of Beijing’s censorship practices.



a close up of a light: Green lights illuminate cable terminals on the Sberbank and SberCloud Christofari supercomputer during an event to mark its launch into commercial operation inside the Sberbank PJSC data processing center (DPC) at the Skolkovo Innovation Center in Moscow, Russia, on Monday, Dec. 16, 2019. As Sberbank expands its technology offerings, the Kremlin is backing legislation aimed at keeping the country's largest internet companies under local control by limiting foreign ownership.


© Bloomberg
Green lights illuminate cable terminals on the Sberbank and SberCloud Christofari supercomputer during an event to mark its launch into commercial operation inside the Sberbank PJSC data processing center (DPC) at the Skolkovo Innovation Center in Moscow, Russia, on Monday, Dec. 16, 2019. As Sberbank expands its technology offerings, the Kremlin is backing legislation aimed at keeping the country’s largest internet companies under local control by limiting foreign ownership.

The Tuber browser, backed by Chinese cybersecurity giant 360 Security Technology Inc., appeared to provide the nation’s 904 million online users the ability to legally visit overseas websites and browse foreign social media. Chinese users hailed their newfound ability to peruse content from Youtube videos to Instagram photos without an illegal virtual private network, or VPN.

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But the browser stopped functioning Saturday and disappeared from the mobile app store run by Huawei Technologies Co. It’s unclear whether a government agency had ordered its removal.

“Presumably the government heard about it and asked the stores to take it down,” said Rich Bishop, chief executive officer of AppInChina, a publisher of international apps in the Chinese market.

Tuber’s removal may have ended what many Chinese users saw as a state-sanctioned window to the wider internet arena. Beijing maintains rigid control over its internet sphere, requiring companies from Tencent Holdings Ltd. to TikTok-owner ByteDance Ltd. to censor and scrub content critical of the government or its policies.

Read more: WeChat and TikTok Taking China Censorship Global, Study Says

Tuber’s browser required mobile number registration, giving developers the ability to track activity because all smartphone numbers in the country are linked

How Amazon Prime Day helps entrepreneurs build million-dollar businesses

  • Amazon Prime Day on Oct. 13 and Oct. 14 will offer thousands of small businesses opportunities to quickly scale customer awareness and revenue.
  • Currently, more than 500,000 small and medium-sized businesses in the U.S. sell on Amazon, and the company’s goal is to onboard an additional 100,000 vendors as new sellers to its store.
  • The online event has helped companies like Furbo that makes a dog camera clinch strategic partnerships and make millions of dollars in online sales.





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Come Oct. 13 and 14, Amazon’s annual two-day members-only online sales extravaganza Prime Day will bring customers over one million deals on myriad products in popular categories including home accessories, toys, and electronics. But in addition to providing shoppers with steep savings starting at midnight PST on Tuesday, the popular sales promotion will also offer thousands of small businesses opportunities to quickly scale customer awareness and revenue.

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Currently, more than 500,000 small and medium-sized businesses in the U.S. sell on Amazon, and the company’s goal is to onboard an additional 100,000 vendors as new sellers to its store. Despite the ongoing pandemic, third-party sellers continue to crowd its virtual aisles, and presently account for over half of all units sold via the online retailer. In the 12-month period ending in May alone, American SMB sellers sold more than 3.4 billion products, up from 2.7 billion year-over-year, and averaged $160,000 in sales, up from approximately $100,000 a year prior.

“Prime Day offers small businesses added exposure to millions of shoppers globally,” explains Maggie Cheung, co-founder of breakout hit home electronics device the Furbo Dog Camera. The five year-old company has been an Amazon seller since October 2016 and first began participating in Prime Day in 2017. “Our first year, we were given the spotlight deal … it

Role-playing computer game helps players understand how vaccines work on a global scale

vaccine
Credit: Unsplash/CC0 Public Domain

A free game launched today allows players to role-play the deployment of a virtual vaccine to help to halt the global spread of a viral pandemic. The Vaccination Game, created by researchers at the University of Oxford’s MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, in collaboration with Goldsmiths, University of London, challenges players to figure out how they can deploy limited doses of the vaccine to best control a disease modelled on influenza.

The idea of developing a game was conceived by Professor Hal Drakesmith and colleagues who are part of a research network focussing on immunising babies and mothers to fight infections in low and middle-income countries. Following funding from, and in collaboration with the IMPRINT research network, they were able to begin development of the game.

“We originally had the idea of the game and began developing it back in 2019, with influenza as our example disease,” said Professor Drakesmith, who is based at the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine. “Then COVID-19 struck, and the ideas behind the game are obviously much more relevant.”

“Our game isn’t intended as a modelling or simulation tool, or meant to predict real-world scenarios”, Professor Drakesmith said. “Instead, we hope it’s educational, as it illustrates how vaccines can work on a global scale, and shows that precisely how a vaccine is deployed across populations can be crucial to its effectiveness”

Professor Drakesmith and his group collaborated with the Analysis, Visualisation and Informatics group, also based in the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, to develop the game. They also worked with Goldsmiths, University of London, to produce the final version based on mathematical models of how a virus spreads, and what effect a vaccine might have.

The virtual vaccine in the game is available in limited doses per

As Millions Of Americans Face Wildfires And Hurricanes, This Kentucky Startup Helps Them Rebuild Faster

Natural disasters including Midwestern windstorms, Gulf Coast hurricanes and West Coast wildfires have wreaked havoc for millions of Americans this year. Settling insurance claims and rebuilding after a disaster is a burdensome task, and all the harder during a global pandemic.

That’s where Louisville-based insurance tech startup WeatherCheck comes in. The four-year-old company collects data from dozens of sources — including FEMA and mapping-software maker Esri — to build a detailed model of weather damage across the U.S. and Canada. That data helps individuals, mortgage lenders, corporations and insurers prepare for natural disasters before they happen — and also process claims much faster after damage occurs.

“Almost 80% of Americans who own property or are renting have an insurance policy,” says Demetrius Gray, the 32-year-old cofounder and CEO of WeatherCheck. “When one of our users has a particular loss, we step in and help them advance those dollars. We’ve been able to reach out directly and say, ‘hey, we’re here to support you.’”

Before the pandemic, the company made most of its revenues selling data subscriptions to insurance companies and property owners. For a fee, customers can use WeatherCheck to access damage reports for all their properties and use a live monitoring tool to prepare for upcoming storms or hurricanes. When the virus began to spread, that business took a hit. As state governors imposed stay-at-home orders in March, the firm cut its sales forecast for the year by 20%.

“Our primary imperative internally is to sell to insurance companies and agents and brokers,” says Gray. “Back in March, there were a number of companies that said, based on this uncertainty, we’re not making any decisions.”

The pandemic also opened up new opportunities for the company. With customers facing a harder