My most popular stories of 2017 (What else? Equifax tops the list)

This was my most-clicked story of 2017.

Well 2017, it’s been nice to know you.  What a year it’s been for consumers, and I don’t mean that in a good way.  Looking back at my most clicked-on stories, it’s obvious which headline captured the most attention: The Equifax hack, and all its fallout.  At a time like this, you have to wonder what all that consternation and all those Congressional hearings accomplished, however.  Credit freezes still aren’t free, even though virtually all Social Security numbers are very much “free” for the taking. They’re still used for security purposes, against everyone’s better judgement. Consumers are still paying for services like LifeLock.

Meanwhile, a laundry list of hard-won consumer protections have been vaporized by the current administration in Washington D.C.  Over at NBC News, Herb Weisbaum summarized this well: Consumers were the biggest losers of 2017. 

Ask just about anyone who’s ever filed a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and you’ll hear the same thing: That agency got results for consumers. Often, within days. Trust me, no one ever said that about the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.  Yes, I know some folks think the CFPB was too independent. But the next time you consider that, think about the FCC and Net Neutrality.  That’s what happens when an agency that’s supposed to protect people is instead “captured” by industry.  The CFPB was very cleverly designed to be independent, to avoid regulatory capture.  Consumers will rue the loss of this independence.

With that, I’ll leave you, dear reader, with a list of my top stories from 2017. Thanks so much for riding along with me. I’ll have some big news in early 2018 that I can’t wait to share.  Until then, have a safe, blessed, happy new year and a great start to 2018.

Top 15 stories of 2017

The Equifax FAQ: You’ve got questions, I try to give you answers More stats 1
The next fraud wave: When banks cash the same check twice, you might have to pay More stats 2
What’s with the disappearing executive orders? Cyber, financial orders pulled at last moment More stats 3
Trans Union tries to lure security freeze-hunting consumers into ID theft service More stats 4
‘Secret’ cell phone plans could save you 50%, so why are carriers embarrassed by them? More stats 5
7 million Americans lost their homes during the recession. Are they ready to buy again? More stats 6
Equifax: What now? My credit freeze primer. Also, don’t over react More stats 7
EXCLUSIVE: Hackers continue stealing from Starbucks app users, nearly a year later; linked credit, debit cards at risk More stats 8
EXCLUSIVE: Pedophilia case takes cruel twist when teenager is accused of assaulting younger brother; ‘digital kidnapping’ to blame More stats 9
This is your face. This is how corporations treat you. This is what we’ve let America become More stats 10
He wanted a credit freeze, but ended up with a $20-a-month Trans Union service instead More stats 11
America lost a treasure yesterday — I want to make sure you meet her; one of first female press secretaries in Senate, but so much more More stats 12
Yes, you can buy a new laptop on credit. But you probably shouldn’t More stats 13
‘You’ve got the wrong person!’ When debt collectors won’t take ‘it’s not me’ for an answer More stats 14
Equifax data leak announcement so messy, it’s tempting to think it’s an upsell; consumers deserve answers, fast More stats 15

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About Bob Sullivan 1255 Articles
BOB SULLIVAN is a veteran journalist and the author of four books, including the 2008 New York Times Best-Seller, Gotcha Capitalism, and the 2010 New York Times Best Seller, Stop Getting Ripped Off! His latest, The Plateau Effect, was published in 2013, and as a paperback, called Getting Unstuck in 2014. He has won the Society of Professional Journalists prestigious Public Service award, a Peabody award, and The Consumer Federation of America Betty Furness award, and been given Consumer Action’s Consumer Excellence Award.

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