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Information Articles for the Paris TN and Henry County Tennessee area

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Information Articles for the Paris TN and Henry County Tennessee area

Tennessee Securities Division Urges Caution When Investing in Cryptocurrency

December 9, 2017

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance - TDCINashville, TN – The virtual currency known as cryptocurrency is riding a wave of public interest amid a frenzy of recent news stories touting record high valuations for the digital-only currency.

Bitcoin, which is the most well-known cryptocurrency, broke records this week with its values on Wall Street now topping more than $270 billion, according to news reports. 

Before making any decisions about investing in cryptocurrency, TDCI urges Tennessee investors to not be gullible, ask tough questions first and understand the risks before making an investment.

Before making any decisions about investing in cryptocurrency, TDCI urges Tennessee investors to not be gullible, ask tough questions first and understand the risks before making an investment.

[Read more]

Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office Urges Care with Christmas Trees

December 8, 2017

Tennessee State Fire MarshalNashville, TN – While opinions may differ on how soon is too soon to put up holiday decorations, the Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) reminds consumers that one thing is not up for debate: Dry and neglected Christmas trees can cause fires.

To avoid a devastating home fire, the SFMO encourages Tennesseans to keep fire safety in mind when trimming the tree this holiday season.

Each year, fire departments nationwide respond to an average of 210 structure fires caused by Christmas trees according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

Holiday house fires can be prevented.

Holiday house fires can be prevented.

[Read more]

TDCI Urges Consumers to Be Aware of Common Holiday Scams

December 4, 2017

Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs Shares Tips to Help Tennesseans Protect Personal Info, Finances

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance – TDCINashville, TN – With the hustle and bustle of the holidays well underway, the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance’s (TDCI) Division of Consumer Affairs is warning consumers to be wary of holiday-themed scams during this season of giving.

Scams

Because scammers use the holidays to prey upon the good nature of others, Tennesseans are urged to guard their personal information carefully and stay informed of the latest schemes and swindles.

TDCI reminds consumers that “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” remains one of the best guidelines when it comes to avoiding scams.
TDCI offers the following additional precautions to help Tennesseans fight back against scam artists:

Be suspicious of anyone requiring you to send money with prepaid money cards.
Be suspicious of apps, online advertisements, or websites offering prices that seem suspiciously lower than retail prices at trusted retailers.
Consider paying with a credit card that offers fraud protection when possible.
Only shop on secure websites. Look for https in the address (the extra “s” is for “secure”) and for a lock symbol.

When it comes to charitable giving, remember:

Don’t assume that charity recommendations on social media platforms or blogs have already been vetted. Research the charity yourself.
Find out what percentage of your donation will go to the charity and whether you will be charged any fees for making a donation through a fundraising platform website.
Check to see if the charity is registered with the Tennessee Secretary of State.
Be cautious when looking to give to charities that pop up soon after a tragedy or natural disaster.
Websites posing as charities can sometimes look identical to the real organization. These fraudulent websites will often ask for personal or financial information over an unsecure connection or may download harmful malware into your computer. Look for a padlock symbol or “https” before the web address indicating that it is secure.
Avoid being pressured to make an immediate donation. Don’t hesitate to ask questions to get more information.
If you didn’t initiate contact, avoid giving personal or financial information over the phone.
Never write out a check or give cash to an individual solicitor. Write out checks to the name of the organization or use a credit card.

[320right]Many holiday scams involve phishing.

Phishing is the act of tricking consumers into revealing information or performing actions they wouldn’t normally do online using phony email or social media posts.

Cyberscammers tailor their emails and social messages with holiday themes in the hopes of tricking recipients into revealing personal information.
The Division of Consumer Affairs encourages consumers to be familiar with these common holiday scams:

UPS phishing scams: A phony notice from UPS says you have a package and need to fill out an attached form to get it delivered. The form may ask for personal or financial details that will go straight into the hands of the cyberscammer.
Banking phishing scams: Cybercriminals craft emails to look like notices sent by actual banks in hopes of scamming busy and distracted consumers into providing their online banking usernames and passwords.
SMS phishing scams: Scammers send fake messages via a text alert to a phone, notifying an unsuspecting consumer that his bank account has been compromised. The cybercriminals then direct the consumer to call a phone number to get it re-activated—and collects the user’s personal information including Social Security number, address, and account details.

E-card scams: While sending electronic cards can be convenient and fun, beware if you must share additional information to open the card, or if the sender’s name is not apparent.
Holiday job scams: Retailers and delivery services need extra help at the holidays, but beware of solicitations that require you to share personal information online or pay for a job lead. Apply in person or go to retailers’ main websites to find out who is hiring.
Letters from Santa scams: Several trusted companies offer charming and personalized letters from Santa, but scammers mimic them to get personal information from unsuspecting parents. Check with www.bbb.org to find out which ones are legitimate.
Family emergency scams: Be cautious if you get a call or email from a family member or friend claiming to be in an accident, arrested, or hospitalized while traveling in another country. Never send money unless you confirm with another family member that it’s true.

If you have been contacted by or fallen victim to a charity scam, report it to the Division of Charitable Solicitations, Fantasy Sports and Gaming at the Secretary of State’s Office; the Federal Trade Commission; your local police department or law enforcement agency; and your bank or credit card company if applicable.

If you are aware of any false, misleading or deceptive fundraising activity, please notify the Division of Charitable Solicitations, Fantasy Sports and Gaming immediately at (615) 741-2555 and ask to speak with an investigator. In addition to speaking with an investigator, please submit a complaint form.

For more scam-fighting resources, visit the TDCI Division of Consumer Affairs website. You can also check what scams are being reported in your area, the state, and across the country by accessing the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker.

About the Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance

TDCI protects the interests of consumers while providing fair, efficient oversight and a level field of competition for a broad array of industries and professionals doing business in Tennessee. Our divisions include the State Fire Marshal’s Office, Insurance, Securities, Consumer Affairs, Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy, Regulatory Boards, Tennessee Emergency Communications Board, Tennessee Corrections Institute, and TennCare Oversight.

Tennessee State Fire Marshal Warns of Increased Fire, Carbon Monoxide Risks During Heating Season

December 1, 2017

Tennessee State Fire MarshalNashville, TN – Although Tennessee is experiencing mild temperatures this week, the State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) reminds consumers that winter is indeed coming, and bringing with it an increased risk for home fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.

The SFMO urges consumers to take safety measures to avoid the hazards that can result from using household heating appliances during the cold weather seasons.

“Statistics consistently show a substantial uptick in fire fatalities during heating season,” said State Fire Marshal and Commerce & Insurance Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak.

From 2012-2016, Tennessee Fire Departments responded to 2,938 home structure fires that involved heating equipment.

From 2012-2016, Tennessee Fire Departments responded to 2,938 home structure fires that involved heating equipment.

[Read more]

State Fire Marshal Urges Safety in the Kitchen this Thanksgiving

November 22, 2017

Tennessee State Fire MarshalNashville, TN – As families prepare to gather for Thanksgiving Day feasts this Thursday, November 23rd, 2017 the State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) reminds Tennesseans to incorporate good cooking safety habits into their plans in order to avoid a holiday home fire.

Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires involving cooking equipment, with three times the average number.  An estimated 2,000 Thanksgiving Day fires in residential buildings are reported to U.S. fire departments each year according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Here in the Volunteer State, 18 percent of reported home structure fires in 2016 involved cooking equipment.

Holiday house fires can be prevented.

Holiday house fires can be prevented.

[Read more]

Tennessee Consumer Affairs Offers Tips to Help Consumers Avoid Holiday Purchase Return Hassles

November 18, 2017

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance - TDCINashville, TN – With the holiday shopping season underway, many Tennesseans are gearing up to score discount deals on Black Friday (November 24th, 2017) and Cyber Monday (November 27th, 2017).

Whether giving or receiving gifts, it’s always important to be aware of a store’s return policy to prevent hassles and headaches at the cash register.

Consumer Tips to help avoid Hassles when returning gifts.

Consumer Tips to help avoid Hassles when returning gifts.

[Read more]

Tennessee Fire Marshal says Misuse of Electric Cords Can Lead to Fires

November 13, 2017

Tennessee State Fire MarshalNashville, TN – Electricity helps make our lives easier, but there are times when we can take its power and its potential for fire-related hazards for granted.

The Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) reminds Tennesseans that the dangers of electrical hazards are always present and warns of common hazards such as overloaded electrical outlets, arcing, and extension cords.

According to SFMO data, electrical wiring, outlets, cords and plugs accounted for 9.51 percent of all structure fires and 14.38 percent of all structure fire deaths in Tennessee between 2012 and 2016.

According to SFMO data, electrical wiring, outlets, cords and plugs accounted for 9.51 percent of all structure fires and 14.38 percent of all structure fire deaths in Tennessee between 2012 and 2016.

[Read more]

TDCI: Collision Frequency Increases During Deer Mating Season

November 8, 2017

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance - TDCINashville, TN – Here in Tennessee, you don’t have to be a hunter to have an animal adventure during the fall months. Depending on where you live, you and your vehicle may be in the same path as deer, raccoons, birds, cows and even bears.

With animal collision rates increasing due to mating season, the Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance (TDCI) shares tips to help protect Tennessee drivers from unforeseen and potentially dangerous encounters with wildlife.

A deer crossing a road

A deer crossing a road

[Read more]

Tennessee Fire Marshal’s Office says Don’t Forget Smoke Alarm Batteries When You ‘Fall Back’ This Weekend

November 4, 2017

Tennessee State Fire MarshalNashville, TN – Get an extra hour of sleep this weekend when you “fall back” for daylight saving time, but keep your peace of mind all year long by changing the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. Tennesseans should turn their clocks backward one hour at 2:00am on Sunday, November 5th, 2017.

“Even alarms that are hard-wired should have their batteries replaced regularly and should be tested monthly to ensure they are providing the proper protection,” State Fire Marshal and Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance (TDCI) Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak said. “Daylight saving time is the perfect time to ensure your home’s smoke alarms are working. Use the extra hour we gain this weekend to make sure your home and family are fire-safe.”

Daylight Saving Time comes to an end [Read more]

Open Enrollment Begins November 1st on the Federally Facilitated Marketplace

November 1, 2017

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance - TDCINashville, TN – The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance (TDCI) reminds consumers that Open Enrollment for insurance coverage on the Federally Facilitated Marketplace (FFM) begins November 1st, 2017. As the enrollment period is shorter than in years past, Tennesseans are strongly encouraged to review their options and begin preparation for the new policy year.

Tennessee consumers will have access to marketplace coverage for 2018 no matter where they live. However, consumers in 79 of 95 counties will only have one carrier option. 

Open Enrollment Begins November 1st

Open Enrollment Begins November 1st

[Read more]

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