Consumer Catch-up: Equifax extends deadline, Walgreens settles CA lawsuit, FCC changing emergency alerts

Wednesday, January 31, 2018
Consumer Catch-up: Equifax deadline, Walgreens lawsuit
Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side have consumer stories you should know about for Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Free credit freeze deadline extended

Equifax is giving people more time to take advantage of a free credit freeze offering. Today, Equifax announced it is extending that deadline until June 30.

You may remember Equifax suffered a massive data breach. 145 million Americans are at risk of identity theft. Fifteen million of those are here in California.

A deadline to sign up for the company's other free offering - free credit monitoring - remains tomorrow, Jan. 31. Equifax is offering a free year of monitoring to those it believes were affected, and is also opening up the offering for those who weren't.

Walgreens reaches $2.25M settlement in CA

Walgreens is paying up, in a settlement over its price scanners and expired products.

The San Mateo County District Attorney's Office announced the settlement today with Walgreen Co. The drug store chain has more than 600 Walgreens stores in California.

Officials inspected price scanners at California stores, and alleged that Walgreens was charging customers more than the lowest posted or advertised price for items. The investigation also claimed Walgreens was selling infant formula or baby food and over-the-counter drugs that were past their expiration date.

Walgreens did not admit wrongdoing, but agreed to pay $2,250,000 in civil penalties and costs. The company must also launch a compliance program to make sure these issues don't happen in their stores.

The settlement was part of a joint investigation with: San Mateo County District Attorney's Office, Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office, Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office, and Santa Cruz County District Attorney's Office.

FCC updating Wireless Emergency Alerts system

The Federal Communications Commission is updating rules for its Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) system. The WEA delivers critical warnings and information to people on their cell phones.

The new rules are meant to make sure that people impacted by any alert receive them, without disturbing others outside of the alert area.

One change put in place will require wireless providers to send out alerts within no more than one-tenth of a mile from the target area. That will go into effect Nov. 30, 2019.

It also requires alerts be available on consumer's phones for 24 hours, or until the consumer decides to delete the message. That will allow people to better review emergency information.

Other changes include Spanish-language message support, and extending the length of those alert messages. Wireless providers must make those updates by May 1, 2019.

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