IRS Phone Scam

Lately I have been getting an increased number of IRS Phone Scams. As I mentioned in previous posts the IRS first sends out a letter if there is an issue with your taxes. You can contact the IRS directly to determine if there is an issue with your taxes.  Here is the video from the IRS that discusses these scams:

Here is a video by the Victoria Police Department where they talk to the actual scammers (warning about the language):

Some of the things you can do:

  • Don’t answer the phone if you don’t recognize the number.
  • Hang up immediately.
  • You can report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, and the FTC
  • If they send an email: do not reply, do not open attachments, do not click on any link inside the email. You can forward the full email with headers to: phishing@irs.gov.

 


Links:

Sugar Ants

Sugar ants seem to stake out their territory; as much as I stake out mine. Once they find a food source them come out in a dense pack to gobble it all up. Battling them is an ongoing challenge. The other day I put down some maple syrup to get them to go to one spot:

DenseAnts.jpg
Mmmm maple syrup

In a few days I will add a few drops of ant poison. Once the flood of ants slows down I will clean up the area to remove their pathway. It seems to be a good method to combat the sugar ants.

Since ant poison is a poison I only put it in locations where my dog won’t get access.

 


Link:

Ant Conference (https://roseylinn.wordpress.com/2016/11/14/ant-conference)

Post Inspired by:

Lottery

Once again one the Powerball jackpot prize is over $400 million. I’ve noticed that with the higher jackpots two things seem to happen:

  1. More advertisements on TV and radio.
  2. More scams and people trying to sell their “lottery winning systems.”

Here are a few tips to avoid the scams:

  • In order to win a lottery you first have to enter that lottery.
  • Any lottery with an anonymous entry system (like the multi-state ones) won’t have your name and address until you give it to them. You have to go to their offices with your signed winning lottery ticket.
  • When a lottery prize is this large buy the ticket yourself.
  • Don’t waste your money on “lottery winning systems”. Search online for tips. If the person wrote a book, wait until it gets to the library. Or read through the online reviews.

Remember that unlike Poker, BlackJack, or other skill based games; the lottery is based on chance. There is a chance that the numbers on the ticket will match the numbers randomly drawn. The current odds of winning the game are 1 in 292 million. Put another way the odds of winning are: 1/292,000,000 or 3.424e-9 or 0.000000003424%. No matter what “system” is used those are still the odds of one set of numbers winning.

Have you bought a Powerball ticket?

Would you trust someone else to buy and hold the ticket?

 

 

Link:

Board Game (https://roseylinn.wordpress.com/2014/07/31/board-game/)

Lottery Jackpot (https://roseylinn.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/lottery-jackpot/)

Happy Valentines

Happy Valentines Day.  Here is a video done by History about the history of Valentines:

Google created an interactive Valentines Day Google Doodle it can be found here: Doodle Archive.


Links in Article:

Bet You Didn’t Know: Valentines Day | History (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neb7dbPW0Sk)

Google Doodle Archive (https://www.google.com/doodles#archive)

Microsoft Scams

In the past few days I have received an increase in these Microsoft Scam phone calls. Again the best thing to do is not answer the phone. The second best is to just hang up on them.

Roseylinns Reflections

With the release of Windows 10 there has been an increase in Windows Scams.  There is a new email scam going around to and the Microsoft Call Center scam calls have increased.  I have noticed that since the release I have gotten two phone calls from the “Microsoft Call Center” in a short time.  Also in the news recently there was an alert about a bogus email claiming that Microsoft was upgrading users to Windows 10 via email.  Anyone who does click on the link in the email can find their computers taken over by the scammers and will be forced to pay a ransom to get it released back to them.

On August 16, 2015 I got another one of those Microsoft Call Center Scam phone calls.  It came in at 9:14 P.M. my time, which puts it 14 minutes outside the allowed call time mandated by the FTC.  The…

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Electoral Voted Presidents

Here is a Ted-Ed talk on how the Electoral College works: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9H3gvnN468)

Question: How many presidents were elected without winning the popular vote?  And which ones were they?

Answer: Five presidents took office without winning the popular vote. In other words they won the electoral college vote; not the popular vote.

They were:

  1. John Quincy Adams who lost by 44,804 votes to Andrew Jackson in 1824.  John Quincy Adams was elected by the House of Representatives after a tie in the electoral votes.
  2. Rutherford B. Hayes who lost by 264,292 votes to Samuel J. Tilden in 1876
  3. Benjamin Harrison who lost by 95,713 votes to Grover Cleveland in 1888
  4. George W. Bush who lost by 543,816 votes to Al Gore in 2000
  5. Donald Trump who is currently losing by 233,404 votes to Hillary Clinton in 2016

A Voting Hoax

A recent hoax circulating online, and in a flyer on a college campus, suggests that voters can vote via social media.  The flyer or online image says that in order to vote for Hillary Clinton voters need to type “Hillary” with the hashtag “PresidentialElection” on November 8 in order to vote for her.  No state allows for voting via social media through the use of a hashtag.

In order to vote in an election a voter has to fill out an official ballot either at a polling location or through absentee voting.  Thirty-two states allow voters who qualify to submit a ballot electronically (via fax, email or web portal).  The majority of those thirty-two states restrict the electronic submission of a ballot to voters who fall under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.  The vlogbrothers put together short videos for how to vote in every state.  This is their video that discusses the project:

The list of videos can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7SMwipBlDwBPEwxq8QD8sw/videos.  There are a few of their videos toward the end of this post.  Check with your states Secretary of State or local election official for up to date information:  https://www.usa.gov/election-office

As this political ad by Save the Day shows the outcome of any election is determined by those who took the time to register to vote, and then voted.

With the negative rhetoric coming from one of the candidates this election it might be tempting to take a selfie of yourself voting and/or the ballot.  In some states it is illegal to use a camera, cellphone, or electronic device in a voting booth; while others allow for using an electronic device as an aid in voting only.  Where some states allow you to take a picture of your ballot; they prohibit sharing that ballot with anyone else.  Check with your states Secretary of State on whether it is legal, illegal, falls into a cloudy area, or is just not a good idea to snap the picture.


How to Vote Videos:

Alaska: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZd7Rp4m8gs)

Military and Overseas: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eg5Qh4anBZE)

New York: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2K5a_NmSoYE)

Pennsylvania: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMJQ5pqiRNA)

The complete list of videos can be found here:    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7SMwipBlDwBPEwxq8QD8sw/videos


Registration Deadlines:

There are only 12 Days until November 8.  Below are the remaining states with upcoming registration deadlines*.  If your state is not listed the deadline has passed.  A search for “how to register to vote” in any search engine will bring up information about how to get registered and the requirements.  Check with your states Secretary of State or local election official for up to date information:  https://www.usa.gov/election-office

  • Alaska
    • In a Presidential Election year, for November General Election only, you can register to vote on Election day.
  • Colorado
    • Online- Oct 31
    • You may also register in person on Election Day.
    • Mail- Oct 31
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • Connecticut
    • Online- Nov 1
    • You may also register in person on Election Day, but only at designated locations.
    • Mail- Nov 1
    • In Person- Nov 1
  • District of Columbia
    • You may also register in person on Election Day as long as you can provide proof of residency.
    • In Person – Nov 8
  • Hawaii
    • Late registration available in person from Oct 25 – Nov 5.
  • Idaho 
    • You may also register in person on Election Day as long as you can provide proof of residency.
  • Illinois
    • You may also register in person at designated locations on Election Day as long as you can provide proof of residency.
  • Iowa
    • Online- Oct 29
    • You may also register in person on Election Day as long as you can provide proof of residency and identification.
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • Maine 
    •  You may also register in person on or before Election Day.
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • Maryland
    • Same day registration is available during early voting period.
  • Minnesota
    • You may also register in person on Election Day as long as you can provide proof of residency.
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • Montana
    • You may register in person at the county election office on Election Day.
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • Nebraska
    • In Person- Oct 28
  • New Hampshire
    • You may register to vote on Election Day as long as the polls are open.
    • Mail- Oct 29
    • In Person- Nov 8
  • North Dakota
    • Only state without voter registration.
  • Ohio
    • You can register and vote the same day during the early voting period.
  • Rhode Island
    • You may register and vote for President/Vice-President only at your local Board of Canvassers on Election Day.
  • Utah
    • Online – Nov 1 .
    • In Person – Nov 1
  • Vermont
    • Online – Nov 2
    • Mail – Nov 2
    • In Person – Nov 2
  • Washington 
    • In Person – Oct 31
  • Wisconsin
    • You may also register in person on Election Day.
    • In Person – Nov 8
  • Wyoming 
    • You may also register in person on Election Day.
    • In Person – Nov 8

Disclaimer:  *Where I’ve made an effort to have accurate information only your states Secretary of States website has the official and current data.  Please check with them about when to register and what you will need on voting day.

Also I am not affiliated with any candidate, candidates party, or state election office.  They haven’t paid me for this or any other blog post I’ve written about voting.  I believe voting is a vital component of a democracy and it is up to everyone to vote.

 

**Changed title of post from “How to Vote” To Voting Hoax on 11/6/2016 due to the post primarily being about a voting hoax.  “How to Vote” was not the correct title to use.

Last Presidential Debate

Here is the video from the last presidential debate this year:

Here is the transcript from the debate: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/20/us/politics/third-debate-transcript.html?_r=0