150203-Destination-Success

If you plan to go to college in the next few years, you probably know that the process is not as simple as filling out an application and heading to class. Between test scores, essays, financial aid and actually finishing high school, it pays to start preparing early. So take advantage of this free college planning event brought to you by inspirED.

Saturday, February 21, 2015
8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Sam Houston High School
2000 Sam Houston Drive, Arlington, TX 76014

In addition to learning more about college prep, financial aid, test prep and finances, you can explore colleges and even win scholarship and prize drawings.

141219-Android-Security

As I pointed out a few weeks ago, Android accounts for more than 97% of malware; and Apple, Blackberry and Windows phones together account for less than 1% of all malware. In fact, according to network security firm Fortinet, there have been only three cases of a malware-infected app making it into the Apple App Store since its launch in mid-2008. Those apps were removed from the app store once they were discovered. Given that there are around 1.2 million apps in the Apple App Store, having only three rogue apps slip through in six years is pretty amazing.

The article also points out is that there have been an additional eight malware sightings on jailbroken iPhones—devices on which Apple’s security features have been removed in order to download third-party apps. This means that, regardless of the few instances of malware that have been found in the App Store, iPhones are not 100% safe from malware. Continue reading

150106-FAFSA-Applications

If you plan to enroll in college this coming fall, it’s time for you to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

What is the FAFSA and why is it so special?

The FAFSA is a form used by the U.S. Department of Education to determine your eligibility for financial aid programs including grants, federal loans and work study and is based on information about you and your family’s financial situation. Continue reading

141219-Android-Security

Did you know that your mobile phone could make you vulnerable to malware attacks or identity theft? Because Apple and Android approach security differently, I am going to touch on each device type separately to discuss risks and how to protect yourself. Here, we will focus on Android phones and tablets.

According to F-Secure, in 2013 Android devices accounted for 97% of all mobile malware. With nearly 85% of smartphones worldwide running Android, it is understandable why malware creators would focus on it. Continue reading

141107-Building-Credit

A good credit score is one of the most valuable commodities a consumer can have. After all, your credit standing not only dictates the loan terms you’re offered and the insurance premiums you pay but also affects your ability to rent an apartment, buy a car, or find a job that requires either a security clearance or the handling of money. Heck, it could even have an impact your marital status, since financial irresponsibility is a major red flag for some people.

When all is said and done, your credit standing will either save or cost you tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars – not to mention countless opportunities – over the course of your lifetime. It’s therefore a good idea to make an investment in your credit here and now. But how can you build and maintain a good credit score? Here are some tips: Continue reading

141107-Travelling

November is here and the race has begun to power through the holidays and into 2015. For many of our members, that means traveling across the country or world to celebrate various holidays with family and loved ones. But before you hop on a plane to grandma’s, it’s important to make sure your finances are in order to avoid late payment fees and accidental overdrafts. Continue reading

141028-Mortgage-Planning

With the end of the year rapidly approaching, people may find their focus shifting to holiday plans and family events. Traditionally this also means home buying plans take a backseat to the coordination of Thanksgiving dinner and thoughts about how to pay for all the holiday festivities coming up. Actually, now might be a really good time to focus on what it takes to buy your first home.

Part of buying a home is figuring out what it takes to make it all come together. The fun part is deciding where to look, how many bedrooms you need and if you finally get that game room with the large screen TV. The not-so-fun part is figuring out how much that all costs, what sort of down payment is required and what your monthly budget will look like with your dream home in hand. That’s why planning is very important, and what better time than now to work on putting it together? Continue reading