Consumer Catch-up: Fire price gouging, Timehop data breach, sign of wealth

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The state Attorney General is warning against price gouging, plus a data breach with Timehop leaked information for 21 million users. The consumer news you need to know for Monday, July 9, 2018. (KGO-TV)

Price gouging warning

California's Attorney General is issuing a warning as wildfires spread across parts of the state.

Three counties are currently under a state of emergency due to the fires. Attorney General Xavier Becerra is reminding all Californians that price gouging during this time is illegal.

"Families... are rightly focused on remaining safe and secure. They should not have to worry about being cheated out of fair prices," he says.

State law generally prohibits prices that jump more than 10 percent after an emergency declaration. It impacts many types of businesses, including those who sell food, emergency supplies, gas, and cleanup or construction companies.

If you think you have been victim of price gouging, file a complaint through the attorney general's website.

Timehop confirms data breach

Timehop, the app millions of people use for throwback pictures and memories, revealed it was hit by a data breach.

The breach impacts 21 million users. Timehop says it became aware of the breach on July 4, and stopped it while it was still in progress.

Data including names, emails, and some phone numbers were taken. Timehop says no private messages, financial data, or "memories" - like posts and photos - were accessed.

The company logged everyone out for security reasons, so you will have to log back into your account to use it.

If you use a phone number to log in, you may want to add a PIN to secure your phone account. Click here for more information about the breach and how to add the PIN.

Apple products sign of wealth

A new study finds that owning an iPhone or an iPad is a strong sign of wealth in America. That's according to researchers at the University of Chicago.

In 2016, the most recent year data was available, owning these two Apple products were the top two brand indicators of a high-income consumer.

In the report, researchers state, "across all years in our data, no individual brand is as predictive of being high-income as owning an Apple iPhone in 2016."

In the products category, traveling within the U.S. and owning a passport were the top two indicators.

Click here for a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

Web copy written and produced by Miranda Dotson
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