Student budget help
Besides the rising costs of a college education, many students face an additional financial challenge once classes begin — budgeting for living and personal expenses. Several Websites offer advice and tools to assist managing expenses while attending school. Here are a few:
Offers several tips on reducing college costs.
Provides online calculator to analyze college spending and budgeting.
• COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS.ORG
Features extensive money-saving tips for students in several categories.
Spotlights 31 general tips to save money while in college.
• SALLIE MAE
Provides insights on managing credit, student loans and choosing a bank.
— By Chuck Myers
McClatchy-Tribune News Service
Here are some tips for protecting your child’s identity:
• Don’t carry your child’s Social Security card around with you.
• Use a cross-cut shredder to destroy documents with your child’s full name and other identifying details, including date of birth.
• Teach children the importance of protecting their personal information on social media. “Children should never post their full name, address, date of birth or other details on social media sites,” said Equifax, one of the three major credit bureaus.
• Make sure your kids use passwords for their smartphones and tablets. Change passwords frequently and never share passwords with others.
• If you’re notified by letter that your child’s personal information has been compromised, confirm that the letter is legitimate. If so, take advantage of any free identity protection services offered and contact the credit bureaus.
• If you have several children and one is a victim of identity theft, closely monitor the personal information of your other children.
— Dallas Morning News
Changes for Skype
Microsoft, which owns the voice, audio and text messaging program Skype, will be making it the default instant communications tool on the newest version of Windows.
“This is fantastic news for both Skype and Windows users,” Skype said in a blog post. “Now you don’t have to download your favorite app to stay in touch whenever you’re apart. With Windows 8.1, simply tap the Skype Live Tile, log in, and you’re ready to go.”
The new integration is similar to how Apple installs its FaceTime video chat service on the OSX operating system by default, even though not every user chooses to use it. Microsoft famously settled an antitrust case with federal prosecutors involving its bundling of the Internet Explorer Web browser with earlier versions of Windows. Critics said Microsoft’s apparent favoritism of Internet Explorer gave it an edge over competing browsers since most desktop computers run Windows. Skype says it has more than 300 million users, and its brand name is often used as a short-hand term for video-chatting.
— Los Angeles Times