JJ Luna

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There are 7,738 questions at JJLuna.com.
RE: #10969 Anthem hack
RE: #10969 Protecting your credit and Identity

According to consumer advocate, Clark Howard, the credit monitoring service you have been offered is not worth the paper it is printed on. Instead he advises you to freeze your credit with all 3 credit bureaus. He has a guide on his website on how to do that.

It should be free since you are a victim of ID theft, otherwise it depends how much you will be charged depending on which state you live in (max cost is $30 total for each adult).

Hope this helps.

Bank Suggestions
I am traveling to Idaho, Washington and Alaska in the next few months. I would like to open a bank account.
Does anyone know of specific banks I should look at?

Re 10941 License plate scanners
Instead of driving to the front door of an event or business, if you park a couple of blocks away and walk, it will not be clear to someone using a license plate scanner or GPS, exactly where you are going as there are probably dozens of businesses within a short walk of where you parked.

Re 10956 Traffic stop
Most states have a grace period within which you must update your address (30 days might be typical.) If you just moved two weeks ago, therefore, you would have a new address not yet on your license. (I don't know how long ago you moved.)
Keep in mind that because of red light and speed cameras you can get a ticket and not know it and risk doubling of fines, possibly arrest for unpaid tickets so it's important to provide an address where you will receive any citations.

Re 10962 Scare at DMV
I had only my street address (without the apartment number ) on my DMV. When I went to renew I was required to give an apt number. Not only does the DMV check whether the address is an apartment building, but the software also has a list of the existing apartment numbers and a wrong apartment number will not fly.

Any comments from readers in other states?

#10972 PayPal
Not providing your real date of birth for PayPal is like not providing your real date of birth for a bank account application. Go figure.

Paypal is register as a bank - at least in Europe.

I understand you want a one time transaction only - depending on the volume - if they require further verification - you may get into trouble. Rather, ask a friend, if you can.

URL #1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PayPal#Regulation

Is it better to have just one or many phone numbers to confound the data bases?
I've got business interests in Illinois, Indiana & Michigan with mailing addresses in those states. Would it be better to have a local phone number for each of those addresses or just use one number, perhaps a non-local phone number, say a local FLORIDA number, instead? With all the data bases out there cross-referencing names, birthdays, phone numbers, mailing addresses of public record, I'm just looking for a way to be as anonymous as possible and confuse anyone looking for me. Thanx.

Drivers License Bar Codes
Hi Jack-

The DMV in my city let me put my mailing address (PO Box) on my drivers license. (This is a good idea for everyone so that every bouncer or bartender can't see your home address.) The DMV still has my home address in their computers. If anyone should scan my license (the way they do in bars now, and in some city office buildings), which address would show up/be stored, if any? (Yes, one should use a passport but not everyone has their passport on them all the time)


Home office deduction
I am facing a mammoth tax bill this year which I can barely afford The only way I can get it down is to make use of the home office deduction.

How can I get the home office deduction and mileage deductible with out revealing my home address?

Yes I could use my ghost address, but what if the IRS wants to inspect the home to prove the deductions?

How does this work? Any ideas?

Hotels Charge Hidden Check in Fee
I travel to Las Vegas once a year, the first time I stayed at a hotel on the Strip I was never charged a check in fee. I always book my trips through Expedia or Priceline. This way the hotel does not have any reason to ask for my credit card.

Last year, I booked my Vegas trip with no problems. This time I booked a different hotel off of the Las Vegas Strip. When I went to check in the front desk person told me I had to pay an extra $50.00 in case of room damage. And hotel only excepts payment with a credit card. I was so mad and wished I'd known about this before I booked. I was unable to pay the check in fee due to my credit card being hacked and still did not have my new one yet. I thought I would be okay just traveling with cash since every body still takes cash.

I explained my credit card issue to the desk clerk and the hotel did not care and refused to lend me the room I paid for. The hotel said I will need to contact the website I booked my room from and ask them to find me another room in the area who will honor my already paid for room. The website was able to find me a room near by but the hotel would still need a credit card in order to check in.
It was getting late, I was tired and ready to cry my eyes out. I called a friend and thankfully my friend was home. I explained what happened and my friend said they will pay the $50.00 check in fee. The hotel needed a photo copy of my friend's credit card and ID front and back. Standing there hearing that scared me and made me think why does the hotel need those photo copies, it does not make since.

I thought the hotel just needed the card number to pay off the fee. Nope my friend had to fill out a check in fee form and fax the photo copies to the hotel.

When I heard that this made me super greatful my card got hacked and my stateID has my PO Box address on it. This made me so upset, I just hope and pray the hotel does not sell my friend's info or steal their info.

I've stayed at other hotels in the states and this is the first time any hotel has ever asked me for a refunable check in fee.

Is this common in other cities. And how do I avoid having to pay a hidden hotel fee in the future?

Internet of things- privacy nightmare
This is why I would NEVER use this in my home.
URL #1: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/5-domestic-smart-devices-spying-right-now/

eBay/PayPal is private for me
This is a response to 10972. JJ, please update the information you disseminate about PayPal and prepaid gift cards. Prepaid gift cards work for me all the time and I've been using them for years. They aren't hit or miss
like they used to be although I personally stick to the Vanilla Mastercard (or Visa) ones from Wal-Mart and Walgreens that require nothing but a ZIP code to register. The only time they don't work is when the merchant
account is outside of the US.

I have a CMRA address I set up years ago to receive packages under a business name. For the eBay auctions that don't post "PayPal required", I would always arrange to send in a money order after I won. Every 6 months, I'd
try to use a prepaid gift card and I noticed sometimes PayPal would accept it and sometimes it would not. On
the times it would not, I'd pay with a Money Order (Buy-it-now auctions requires immediate payment through
PayPal now though). People never expect payment to be mailed nowadays, but if you don't have PayPal, they can't
deny you to mail in payment either and I've never been denied paying by Money Order when PayPal didn't work. You
have to ask separately for an address to mail payment as eBay doesn't automatically provide this address as they did in the old days. PayPal also used to be hit or miss when paying a mail-order website taking PayPal as theirsole method of accepting credit cards.

All of this changed in 2014 (policy change?) as PayPal now works 100% with the prepaid cards I buy. When PayPal
does successfully charge a prepaid gift card, they always ask you to set up an account after a "successful"
purchase, so I tried it again last year and it worked with no additional info. Previously, they always asked
for a birth day and I'd abort the form. Now, no birth date is required, just the shipping details you have to
provide anyway to receive your package. This doesn't stop them from asking to link a bank account each time you log in, but simply ignore it like I do. Not everyone has to have a bank account. It is also important to
note that at the same time PayPal began working 100% of the time with prepaid gift cards, their checkout system
has begun listing "prepaid gift cards" as an option.

It is also exciting that at the same time PayPal became more friendly with gift cards, eBay gift cards started showing up again in stores such as Safeway. These were available years ago, and then disappeared. Now they're back and they WORK. I have verified numerous eBay gift cards paid with cash.

Pay Pal
Do you have to provide your real date of birth when setting up a Pay Pal account? Can they confirm that your date of birth is accurate? I only need to use Pay Pal for a one time transaction. Thank you.

No to both questions.

About xmas and easter
Hi JJ,

I am intrigued to know your reasons for not celebrating either holiday.

Thanks, Lee

This request should have been sent to my email, not to this site, Lee.

Amtrak lies about police use of passenger data
Good reason to use a ghost address and pay in cash.


Anthem Bllue Cross hack
I have Anthem BC/BS through my work and am one of the millions affected by the hack. I have looked at ALLClearId's privacy statement and it is really scary. At this point, I cannot see myself signing up for the monitoring service even though it would be free to me. Do you have any advise for me or anyone effected by such a hack? There are some databases that I cannot prevent being in without changing my life significantly. WARNING: I am providing the link to AllClear id's privacy statement but do not visit it with a vpn and other protection programs. They use pixel tracking per the privacy statement!
URL #1: https://allclearid.com/legal/privacy-policy

risk to air-gapped computers
Israeli security folks have found a way to siphon information from air-gapped computers via the internal thermal sensors.

Other methods are also mentioned in the linked article.

URL #1: http://www.wired.com/2015/03/stealing-data-computers-using-heat/

Use ghost address for tax return
I travel a temp apartment in NYC and travel a lot for work. I'm wondering if i can use my AK ghost address to establish a permanent residency and file tax returns?

There are two separate issues here.

1. I think you can use ANY mailing address on your tax form. I use a CPA's address in a faraway state. Same with passport applications.

2.No, you cannot call AK your resident address because you do not live there.


If I already own my car, can I sell it to my new NM LLC for a buck and still be private? In your book, you mention private party sale in "cash". However, can that private party be the same person and sell it to the NM LLC?

It depends on the state. In many states you can avoid sales tax by explaining that you are merely transferring the car to your own LLC. If you have more questions, check with Rosie.

In December 2013 you sent me "3 reasons not to celebrate Christmas," but I was too afraid not to celebrate it that year because my husband was a strict "born again" Christian. Since then, however, I have divorced him (adultery!)so I skipped that holiday last December. But what about Easter, Mr. Luna?

The email you included does not work. Please contact me at Jack@JJLuna.com for reasons never to celebrate Easter, either.

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