I started 7 On Your Side here at ABC7 News and over the past 20 years I have sent bad guys to prison, forced product recalls and returned millions of dollars to consumers. Because I spend so much time dealing with legal issues, midcareer I returned to law school. That education has served me and ABC7 News viewers well.
Even many of my close friends don't know that as a young reporter I covered the '89 Loma Prieta Quake, Oakland fire storm, L.A. riots, and numerous floods, forest fires and other calamities. Let me tell you it is other worldly to be on a boat, in the middle of a hurricane attempting to reach a devastated Kauai because the air space has been closed. No electricity, no lights, just the silhouette of a mountain rising out of the ocean. I know what that island looked like to ancient mariners.
There is little I like more than to "afflict the comfortable", but among those is skateboarding with my son, watching my daughter cheer and having a nice Pinot Noir on a warm summer day in the wine country with my wife.
Check out my Facebook page. You can send me your questions and find out how to get free stuff! Also, follow me on Twitter for the latest consumer news AND more freebies.
Michael Finney joined ABC7 News in 1991. His consumer reporting has received many prestigious awards in broadcast journalism including honors from several Press Clubs, The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Radio Television News Directors Association and the Associated Press. Community groups such as Consumer Action, The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights and The National Association of Consumer Advocates have also honored his work.
Michael's 7 On Your Side reports can be seen at 4, 5 & 6 p.m. on ABC7 News. His "Consumer Talk" radio show is heard every Saturday afternoon between 1 - 4 p.m. on KGO-AM810. His first book, Michael Finney's Consumer Confidential was a top 10 best seller on The Amazon Business list. His new book, The Definitive Guide to Bay Area Deals, is scheduled for a fall 2012 release.
California unemployment: 5 arrested in suspected South Bay EDD fraud scheme
"We suspect that this fraud ring had the potential or had access to possibly up to a million dollars of EDD funds." An investigation into a Sunnyvale burglary uncovered identity theft with connections to a Silicon Valley EDD fraud ring.
Bank of America asked why they're draining EDD accounts, leaves questions unanswered
Bank of America failed to provide answers by a Tuesday deadline. And now thousands of unemployed workers are left without badly-needed benefits.
California unemployment: Lawmakers demand to know why Bank of America is draining EDD accounts
"For the debit cards to lead to draining of funds is not acceptable." California Assemblymember David Chiu is one of the bipartisan group of lawmakers demanding the CEO of Bank of America explain the bank's mishandling of EDD accounts.
Consumer Reports: Tips on how to boost your WiFi with range extenders
Do you have WiFi issues at home?
UV-C light device that could kill bacteria, viruses on ATM keypads
Can this UV-C light device protect you from bacteria and viruses the next time you touch an ATM keypad, especially during the flu and holiday shopping season?
Federal unemployment payments and stimulus money: Here are the pandemic financial aid deadlines you need to know
"What if the money runs out?" If you qualify for federal unemployment payments, you're still entitled to them retroactively even though the window for payments has passed.
Santa Rosa man inundated with calls after Siri gives out his number as Amazon's
SORRY, WRONG NUMBER: Wilbert Johnson purchased a mattress on Amazon -- and then the calls began.
California unemployment: Workers with jobs get EDD benefits, desperately try to return it before year's end
"I didn't need the money, I don't want the money, I want to give it back." Workers who received EDD payments they didn't ask for are forced to navigate EDD's confusing methods of returning the money.
Holidays on a budget: Top toys under $20 for young children
Some toys have a serious nostalgia factor, including classic games and new takes on Beanie Babies and goopy slime.
California Unemployment: Mom of 3 locked out of legitimate EDD account, forced to send kids away
She placed call after call and uploaded document after document. But still, the EDD has not unlocked her account. The mother of three says it's "heartbreaking for a parent as an adult to tell a child that they can't have anything to eat."