H&R Block wiped out tax data of filers looking for less pricey option, FTC alleges

H&R Block wiped out tax data of filers looking for less pricey option, FTC alleges

H&R Block marketed its tax-preparation products as free yet deleted the data of customers as way to pressure them into paying for pricier services, the Federal Trade Commission alleged on Friday.  The tax-preparation software giant’s online tax-filing products lead users to costlier products made for more complicated tax filings, even if they don’t need the … Read more

Google strikes $60 million deal with Reddit, allowing search giant to train AI models on human posts

Google strikes $60 million deal with Reddit, allowing search giant to train AI models on human posts

Google has struck a deal with Reddit that allows the search giant to use posts from the online discussion site for training its artificial intelligence models and to improve services such as Google Search. The arrangement, announced Thursday and valued at roughly $60 million, will also give Reddit access to Google AI models for improving … Read more

Avast sold privacy software, then sold users’ web browsing data, FTC alleges

Avast sold privacy software, then sold users' web browsing data, FTC alleges

After promising that its software would shield internet users from third-party tracking, Avast allegedly harvested and sold customers’ online browsing data, according to the Federal Trade Commission.  The maker of antivirus software deceived customers by claiming it would protect their privacy, while not making clear it would collect and sell their “detailed, re-identifiable browsing data,” … Read more

What Is Your Housing Situation? We Want to Hear From You.

What Is Your Housing Situation? We Want to Hear From You.

“No society can be fully understood apart from the residences of its members.” I have that quote (from “Crabgrass Frontier,” the seminal history of America’s suburbs) taped to a wall behind my desk. It summarizes why I love covering housing for The New York Times and seem never to run out of things to write … Read more

Looking for a Lower Credit Card Interest Rate? Good Luck.

Looking for a Lower Credit Card Interest Rate? Good Luck.

Credit card debt is rising, and shopping for a card with a lower interest rate can help you save money. But the challenge is finding one. Smaller banks and credit unions typically charge significantly lower interest rates on credit cards than the largest banks do — even among customers with top-notch credit, the Consumer Financial … Read more