The Personal Finance Podcast

The Best Accounts for Kids, Social Security in Retirement, and How to Block Spam Texts – Money Q&A

In this episode of the Personal Finance Podcast, we are going to do a Money Q&A about the best accounts for kids, social security in retirement, and how to block spam texts.

In this episode of the Personal Finance Podcast, we are going to do a Money Q&A about the best accounts for kids, social security in retirement, and how to block spam texts.


Today we are going to answer these questions:

Question 1: The Best Accounts for Kids 

Question 2: Should I factor Social Security in my Retirement Plan? 

Question 3: The Ultimate Guide to Blocking Spam Texts 


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On this episode of the personal finance podcast, the best accounts for kids, social security and retirement, and how to block spam texts on this money. Q and a

what's up everybody. And welcome to the personal finance podcast. I'm your host, Andrew, founder of master money. co and today on the personal finance podcast, we're going to be diving into your questions. On this money Q and a, if you guys have any questions, the quickest way to get ahold of me is to shoot me an email.

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Much cannot thank you guys enough for doing that. Please try to subscribe and leave that five star rating and review. And then lastly, if you want to watch us, you can watch us on YouTube as well. And we are going to be doing and building out a brand new studio, really excited for this. So our YouTube content is going to be elevated significantly in the coming months.

And one cool thing that we are doing that I want to kind of talk through at the top of the show is we're going to be. Adding in some slides and some show notes where you can actually follow along as we're talking through some of these more complicated subjects. And so I'm going to have those available for you guys when we have the new setup ready to go.

And as we talk through some of these subjects, we're actually going to have some of the outline laid out so that you can see some of these graphs and these charts that we're talking through as well. So really, really excited about that and how we're going to have all this new YouTube content. So if you want to subscribe to us so that you can see all this new content coming out on YouTube, just go to the answer.

YouTube channel, just my name. If you go there, you will be able to see all the podcast episodes and all the various things. We had an old personal finance podcast channel, but we decided to just to combine it all into one. Um, so that you guys have one place to go to, and you don't have to go to two various places.

So just go to the Andrew Giancola YouTube channel. You will see. Really, really pumped about that. I think it's going to be really cool and it will help us kind of get this message out there that I believe anybody in this world can build wealth. And we want to create a million millionaires. So really, really excited about that as we go through this process.

Now, today we're going to be diving into three different questions. And the first question is going to be talking through the various accounts that you can open for kids. And what I'm going to do is I'm also going to rank those various accounts, um, and what I think about them. We're also going to be doing a full episode on that.

Coming up in the near future, we're going to dive really deep into the details on that. So make sure you're subscribed to this podcast for that. Then we're going to be talking through should I factor social security in my retirement plan? That is going to be one big one that I think is really important for a lot of people to think through.

Most people haven't thought through social security as of yet until you get to your 40s and 50s. I want to talk through how you should actually consider that. And then lastly, the ultimate guide to blocking spam texts, and we're getting so many more spam texts now. And a lot of these spam texts are looking at lists that you're already subscribed to acting like the places that you're shopping at and giving you false links that is giving away your data.

And so it's really important to look through that. I'm going to tell you how to avoid a lot of these spam texts and how to get spam texts turned off through your cellular providers as well. So there's a bunch of cool stuff we'll dive into there today. And so that's the show today. So without further ado, if that's something you're into, let's get into it.

All right. All right. So we are going to get into this first question. The first question is hi, Andrew, your podcast continues to inspire and support our family. We cannot thank you enough. Quick question. Our 14 year old daughter has a part time job waitressing. Recently. She showed me her bank account and she has about 60, 000.

7, 000 in there. Absolutely amazing. I told her we needed to get her investing. And I know you've mentioned custodial Roth IRAs in the past. However, are there options out there for minors to invest? We're in support of a custodial Roth for her. However, we also don't know if we want to wrap up all her money in retirement accounts, if she chooses, she wants to.

Access this money later on. We want to set her up for financial success in the future. Any advice you could provide would be appreciated. Thanks in advance. So this is a fantastic question, and I'm going to talk through some of the accounts that you might want to consider. Uh, because I think this is so incredibly powerful that she is waitressing and she already has 7, 000 saved up.

And fun fact is I was a waiter for a couple of years later in my teens. And I was probably the worst waiter of all time. I always wondered why all the wait staff in the entire restaurant would make more money than me. And then I realized now that I was just a terrible waiter. There was times where I'd be holding trays of water and I would just spill it all over people.

It was just absolutely awful. I was awful, awful, awful at it. I had great customer service, but I just could not handle All the situations that were going on at the same time. And so for me, I was an absolutely terrible waiter. My wife, on the other hand, she had been a waitress for years and years and years.

And she was a waitress because her parents owned two different restaurants. And so she was always a waitress and made tens of thousands of dollars. By the time she graduated high school, she had made something like 50 to 100, 000. Is what she had saved up and it was something that I think is absolutely amazing what you can do if you do these types of service jobs, especially waitressing or being a waiter or a waitress when you're in your teenage years, you can make a lot of money, especially for a teenager.

So I think this is so powerful that she has 7000 already saved up and you can save this money pretty, pretty quickly. So anybody who has teens out there, if you want them to really get This thing ramped up, it'll change their life. If they are a waiter, a waitress, a, you have to deal with really difficult people, be, you have to handle very difficult situations and people who are just grumpy because they're hungry, all that kind of stuff, but see, you can save a lot of money and when you save this money, you'll be able to invest these dollars and these dollars are so incredibly powerful.

In fact, if she's got. 7, 000 in there. It's going to be amazing to see where that money can grow. Cause we can put this into something like an investment calculator and I'll do this right now. Let's just say she put that 7, 000 into something that, you know, it gets a 10 percent rate of return. Love using 10 percent rate of return.

We're mapping some of this stuff out because it's a really, really powerful thing. So she has about 50 years before she'd need to access that in a retirement account. I know we're talking through some of the options that aren't retirement accounts, but if she did put it in a retirement account, Without putting another dollar in there.

So 7, 000 over the course of 50 years at a 10 percent rate of return is 821, 735. I mean, just absolutely amazing what compound interest can do. That's not putting a single dollar more in there. It's $7,000 would grow to almost $850,000. Let's just do this for kicks and giggles. Now let's see if we put 8,000 in there we're, if you just add $1,000 more, you are gonna get to $939,000.

So every thousand dollars right now that she invests into the market is going to equal well over $100,000 if she holds onto that up to retirement age. Holy cow. That is, that blows my mind even more than I thought it would. Uh, let's put 9, 000 in just for kicks. Let's see what happens there. So if she saves 9, 000 now, doesn't touch it again.

Got a 10 percent rate of return. She'd have 1, 056, 000. Now, let's say she doubles her seven. Now I'm just really getting into the, you can see how big of a nerd I am about this stuff. I'll just go through and start to do compound interest calculators just for fun in my own spare time. But let's say she doubles it up.

If she put 14, 000 in there, she have 1. 643 million, just 14, 000 saved this year in that account. She didn't touch it till she's 65. You could literally set up a retirement plan for your kids, guys. And this could be something that you could set up, you know, pretty quickly if you had a big, big bonus or something at work.

But You could literally set something up amazing for your kids. Like say you got a 30, 000 bonus. You already hit all your retirement goals. You got to take care of those first, but let's say you already hit all those retirement goals. You took that 30, 000 and invested it for them 3. 5 million bucks by the time in 50 years.

Wow. Now, what will 3. 5 million be worth in 50 years? That's the argument I always get back. It doesn't matter. They got 3. 5 million there. That's way more than any of us are ever going to get. And so that's something I think that is really, really important to understand. Anyways, I'm getting sidetracked here.

So let's dive into the actual question. And so the first option that you talked about was a custodial Roth IRA. And this is a really, really cool option, especially with her earned income, because you can probably max this out. To the max every single year, because you can only put in and contribute the amount that you earn every single year, your earned income, you can contribute equal to your earned income.

So if you have a, uh, someone who makes 1, 500 per year, then you can only put 1, 500 into a custodial Roth IRA. So it limits the The amount you can contribute, especially if you as parents want to start matching that. That is one of the downsides, but you can contribute to like the custodial Roth and in addition, some other things as well.

Now, the beautiful thing about a custodial Roth IRA is like I said, with those examples, if you put the money in a custodial Roth IRA, and let's just go back to the 7, 000 just so we can get back to that example here. Um, but if you put that money into the custodial Roth IRA, the 7, 000 will obviously be taxed.

When you put the money in your money's already going to get. Tax, but then over the course of, you know, that timeframe, this money's going to grow. And the cool thing about your money is that it's going to grow tax free over that timeframe. So you're going to contribute 7, 000 in a custodial Roth IRA, and it's going to grow to that 821, 000 that we talked about earlier, but the amount of money that is completely tax free.

Is the amount of money that your money made, which is 814, 735 completely tax free. You will never pay a dime of tax on that money unless somebody in the government changes the laws around the Roth IRA, but 814, 000, because they have such a long time horizon, the compounding and the growth is going to be the majority.

And this is why we like the custodial Roth IRA so much is because the majority is within the actual money. That's your money makes the amount of money that it earns. Compound interest is going to be the massive amount there. And so that is why we love this so much is because of that. Cause they have so much time for this to compound.

Now I understand completely you wanting to actually put this possibly in other things, not just retirement accounts. So you can match that. You can do whatever you want with the custodial Roth IRA, um, with your kids. There are some other options. There are things like the, uh, UTMA. Okay. So what the UTMA is, is it allows a minor to receive gifts, such as money, real estate, fine art, or whatever, without the aid of a trustee or guardian.

So these accounts are much more flexible than one we'll talk about here in a second, the UGMA account in terms of the types of assets that can be held and the custodian, which is you manages the assets until the minor reaches the age of majority. So funds from the UTMA accounts can be used for anything that benefits the minor, not just educational.

Expenses. So you can use this for all kinds of stuff. So unlike the Roth IRA, the funds do not have to stay in that account until retirement. It offers a little more flexibility. So this is something where you're going to get a little bit of a tax break here. But in addition, it's something that still can kind of lock your money down.

I don't love some of the rules surrounding it sometimes. And so that's why I actually don't have one of these open for my kids at all. There's another option, which is the UGMA, which I like even less. But similar to UTMA accounts, UGMA accounts are custodial accounts that hold investments until the minor reaches adulthood.

And the primary difference is the UGMA accounts are limited to financial assets such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and insurance policies. UGMA accounts provide a way to transfer property to a minor without establishing A trust so you don't have to utilize a trust with this like U. T. M. A. Accounts. The custodian manages the funds, but they must be used for the benefit of the minor.

So these are two great accounts. If you want to structured in this way, they're a little more complicated than the next option I'm gonna talk about, but they also have a little more sheltering than these options. So the next option that I'm gonna talk about is custodial brokerage accounts. So brokerage accounts are what I love.

I invest my kids money into brokerage accounts. In fact, my three year old, let's look what he has right now. In fact, my three year old just from doing our simple, uh, taxable brokerage account plan. If you haven't heard that we have an entire episode on that, that I will link up in the show notes below, but just by doing that, which ends up being like a hundred bucks a month, that's a thousand dollars when they're born a hundred bucks a month.

He's got a close to 10 grand in there already. And that's not to brag. That's just to show you that small amounts of money. And a hundred dollars is a lot for some people per month. And I completely get that. But if you want to get to the point in time where you can start doing that, and when you can start putting a hundred dollars per month into those accounts, and then adding additional funds, you know, on their birthday and Christmas, that is going to be something that's really, really powerful for them in the long run.

So we've been doing that since he's been born and it's been a great thing. So. The brokerage account is a little more flexible, meaning that a custodial brokerage accounts, you can put money in, there are no retirement restrictions and your daughter can pull that money out when she's ready. Um, if she wants to use it for something else.

Now, one thing I will note is if they get money compounding early and maybe they want to go buy a house, for example, that's absolutely great. Or maybe they want to go buy a car or something like that. One people set their kids up in a way where they're like, Hey, start saving your money and investing your money.

And eventually you can buy a car. I don't love that plan. And the reason why I don't love that plan is because now they started compounding really early. This money can be really, really valuable. And all of a sudden they interrupt compound interest unnecessarily. They take all the money out and then they buy a depreciating asset.

I hate that. And so a lot of people do this. I know tons and tons of people that do this. And it's better than not doing it. But at the same time, It's not my favorite plan. And the same thing goes for something like a house. Maybe they save up until a 35 and then all of a sudden they buy a house with these funds.

They are much better off utilizing this money for retirement, unless they're hitting their retirement goals and they don't care about retiring, but they're much better off letting that money compound longer and then utilizing it for retirement. And retirement is so hard to think about when you're this age.

I understand that it's one of the hardest things you can actually have to think about because it's so far away. You've only been on this earth for 14, 15 years. And so having to think about retirement is very, very difficult. But at the same time, if you can start to kind of ingrain this in your kid's heads, that if they can think about this, they can have millions and millions of dollars on a line.

It's really, really powerful stuff. I always thought about, and there's probably a way to do this. If you're an attorney and you know how to solve this. Set this up. I always thought about, is there a way to set up some sort of trust? If you're an attorney and you could set this up, but I always thought, you know, it'd be very cool to be able to set up some sort of trust where you have some of these funds set up where they can't touch it until closer to their forties or their fifties, where they can start to really think about retirement.

I think that'd be a really cool way to set some of this stuff up, not with their money, but with, you know, just with your own money that you're contributing to their funds. But anyways, so I think this is really, really cool. I think this is an awesome plan that you have in place here. And those are the accounts that I would look at.

Now. I rank these as the custodial Roth IRA and the custodial brokerage account are my top two. Those are the two that I utilize for my kids only because of their flexibility on the custodial brokerage account. And then the custodial Roth IRA gives you that tax free growth that you know, your boy loves.

And so having that available is going to be powerful. And then going with, you know, UTMA or UGMA is great as well. Um, but you just got to make sure that you understand all the parameters around them. And I don't love all the parameters around them personally. And then obviously you have, you know, 529 plans.

We have entire episodes on those as well. And then you can utilize things like if they just want to save some cash up, for example, you can utilize things like CDs or high yield savings accounts. But for the most part, that's how I would look at those. And they can open up, you know, the custodial brokerage account.

Just got to be in your name. I opened my first custodial brokerage account when I was 15. 15 and so I think it's a really cool thing that you could do. It got me into investing. It got me started. It got me seeing my money compound and I made the mistake. I remember the first grouping I had, I made the mistake of like trying to day trade it by the time I turned 19 cause I just didn't know.

And so that's one of those things I regret because that money could have been compounding for a really long time. So anyways, you have so much time here. This is absolutely amazing. And I hope this really helps. All right. The next question is a really cool question about financial independence and how they should factor in social security.

So Andrew, your podcast kickstarts my week. Thanks for such awesome content. I've been chasing financial independence for four years now, and I'm about to hit approximately 400 K in retirement savings. That's absolutely amazing. In four years, my target is 1. 1 million with a baby on the way. I've adjusted my plans to aim to work part time.

One of my goals with fire. Very cool. And my ultimate goal of being completely work optional in 10 years by age 48. I'm wondering if I should factor in social security as it could impact my financial independence number. I recently ran some numbers for claiming it at 62 and it would lower my fire number significantly.

I rarely hear anyone mention social security as part of the journey. Should I even take this into consideration? Any advice would be absolutely appreciated. First of all, this is absolutely amazing that the progress that you're making and you are doing real fire. There's not a lot of people that I've heard of as of late that are doing real fire where they're trying to retire.

You know, within a certain time frame, you are mapping this out. I absolutely love this. And I want more people to think like this because this is something that you have this in place and you are really, really attacking it, making sure that you have this ready. Now, one cool thing I love is that you have the fire.

Flexibility with the baby on the way to adjust your plan to work part time. That is so cool. That is what money is there to do. And I want everybody listening to this podcast to hear this money is there to reduce your stress and anxiety. It's also there to provide flexibility with your time, which is what I really want you to be doing when you're setting up your financial plans, you need to have flexibility with your time and your energy, and it's so cool that you've set yourself up in this way.

So. Let's talk about social security though and financial independence because I think this is something that you're right. Most people don't talk about this. It needs to be talked about. And I think the reason why most people don't talk about it is they are uncertain of the future. And so we need to make sure for all of us that we are here talking through social security and they've been saying social security is going to go away since the sixties.

I've talked through this a bunch with folks who are in their sixties through eighties and saying, you know, how long have they been saying this? Have they been saying social security is going to go away for a long time? They. Always say yes. Now, the thing to note about social security is it's not guaranteed, meaning it's not going to be guaranteed by retirement age, which is why a lot of people just don't factor it into their financial plan.

Me personally, I'm also just risk averse, so I am not going to factor it into my plan a ton. It might be a small, small impact, but if like you, you're trying to hit that financial independence goal pretty quickly. Um, this may be something you want to factor in. Now, one thing I would do. Is start to explore the social security administration has the calculators, which it looks like you've already started to run those numbers for claiming at 62.

But for those listening, the social security administration has calculators where you can get a better estimate of your potential benefits by claiming at various ages. So you can claim at 62. You can claim later on. Even at age 70, I am pro claiming early. And the reason why I'm pro claiming social security early is because you can take those dollars.

And if you're not going to use them, you could probably invest those dollars and they would compound to a greater value than would be if you waited until age 70 and got those bigger, larger lump sums of money. I'd rather have control of my money early on. I mean, you could take those dollars and put them towards real estate investments or some other things that would help it compound over time, where now you're acquiring assets throughout those eight years, instead of pushing it off.

Off to later on to 70, 71, 72, whatever. So first of all, you know, running those calculations, get that clear depiction of what you're thinking through when it gets to age 62. Um, and then what I would do is if you're okay with the risk of this may not be here when you actually get there. Meaning that you may get to the point in time where you might have to work part time to make up for some of it, doing barista fire in some way, shape, or form.

If you're okay with that, and you probably will know it a way ahead of time, then you could factor this into your fire number because they've been saying for decades and decades and decades that it's going to go away and it hasn't yet. It's one of those things that every single year, all I see are these scare tactics with all the media companies trying to say it's going to go away.

And it really has not yet. Now, it would take a lot for it to go away, meaning that there's a lot of people who have been contributing to Social Security for a long time. And if they took it away, it would be a big ordeal with a lot of people. But at the same time, it is possible that it could go away. So it's kind of like weighing the scale there on what type of risk you want to take.

But If you were guaranteed it was going to be there, would you factor in your fire number? Absolutely. I mean, you'd make sure that it was there so that you could figure out and it would adjust the number and it would, especially at 1. 1 million, it would be a big impact for sure. Because that would reduce the amount that you need by like, you know, 250, 000 because it's additional 12, 000 a year.

So reduce your fire number to like 750 800 instead of having to go to 1. 1 million. So if you want to factor it in, here's a couple of things that I would think about. Is a consider the timing of when you're going to retire. So if you're going to retire at 48, you have 12 additional years to slowly earn some money that you could put towards making up the difference of social security went away.

So within those 12 years, the question to ask yourself is, could I earn an additional few thousand dollars doing some side hustles or some side projects where I can make, you know, an additional 5, 000 a year? That I could start to invest over the course of the next 12 years. And that would probably help you make up the difference in social security, meaning that you wouldn't have to earn a ton of income if you could live off that, but at the same time, could you make up that difference, uh, by earning a small amount and doing some barista fire or some flex fire or some of that kind of stuff.

As you move forward, but I wouldn't rely on the total amount. And the reason why that is just because of the uncertainty around social security in total a for a lot of people, it would just stress them out thinking about this, not knowing if it's actually going to be there or knowing if it's going to be there, if it doesn't stress you out.

And you're willing to go to plan B or have a plan B in place, then I would absolutely factor it in, because if you have a plan B that you think is viable and that can really, really work, um, then I would absolutely factor it into your fire number. But it's important to have that plan B in place just in case we have no idea.

And the problem is it's not something we can control. So we want to focus as much as possible. On the things we can control. And so what we control is having a plan B. So you could factor in your fire number, be done earlier, but you have to have a plan B in place just in case something else happens. And then obviously having those regular updates on social security is really, really important and really talking through and thinking through is social security really going to go away?

Or is this something that is just, you know, A headline for media companies to get a bunch of clicks because who's reading media outlets right now a lot or who's watching the news a ton. It's people who are on social security. So there's a reason why they put that up there all the time is because folks who are on social security need to know their money is going to still be coming within the next five or seven years.

So it'd be a very complicated process for them to just take it away. Um, because there's people that rely on it now, but what they would probably do is my assumption, my guess, Would be, you know, by X date, if they took it away, it would be, you know, you'd know the date way ahead of time. This is why I think that you could factor it in.

And if you have that plan B in place, then you would know the date ahead of time and be able to adjust accordingly. So that is where I think. You could definitely do that. Now, since you're retiring at age 48, as long as that fire number is going to cover you in the meantime, then I think it's a okay for you to consider that and go through that process.

So listen, I hope this helps. I know it's the hardest part about this is that we are uncertain of what the future is. But I think Congress would tell us ahead of time, you know, this cutoff is going to be within the next decade. The cutoff is, you know, if you're retiring in the year 2045, that's when the cutoff is going to be.

And so. They would let us know ahead of time. Then you could plan and adjust accordingly because that's probably the best overall way to think about this. Cause I don't think they just ripped the bandaid off and leave, you know, millions of Americans without their income that they're relying on every single month, they'd have to do something like that and plan way ahead in order to cut it off.

So listen, I hope that helps. Um, and it's something that I think that you could definitely plan for. But just make sure you have that plan be in place. That's the most important step. Cause that's the thing that you can control. All right. So the last segment here is we're going to give you the ultimate guide to blocking spam texts.

And this segment is going to be brought to you by delete me and delete me is by far my favorite service that I have utilized over the course of the last couple of years, because what delete me does. Is delete me comes and they actually remove your personal information off the Internet, and what they do is they go to data brokers that are holding your personal information.

You may not even know that they have your personal information. They go to these data brokers and they say, Hey, you need to get this person off the Internet. Off of your list. And that's where spammers are going to get your information is from these data brokers, which we're going to talk about here in a second, but delete me will actually help you remove that information.

When I first did this, they removed my personal information from thousands of data brokers. And it was so eyeopening when I saw how many data brokers actually had my information. You can Google yourself and you can Google your name in quotations or your address in quotations, your phone number in quotations as well.

And you'll see pop up your information. All over the place and all these random websites. And so what delete me does is it takes your information off these websites and this helps you get scammed way, way less because what people are doing when they're trying to scam you online is they're trying to get pieces of your information.

Once they piece all those together, then they can put into place whatever scam they're going for, whether they're doing phishing attempts, whether they're trying to steal your credit card information, whether you're trying to sign up your name for fraud. All of these things happen all the time now. And so this is why we at the personal finance podcast focus so much on making sure that we are protecting our finances.

So if you go to join delete me. com slash P F P 20, you can get 20 percent off of your service. of them removing your information from these online data brokers. It is so important that you can do this and they have 24 7 data broker monitoring. So it's really important that you do this. Um, I think to protect your finances is getting harder and harder to protect your finances online.

And right now they have plans like. The standard protection plan is 8. 60 per month. That is incredibly valuable. If you want to do it for your entire household, it's 15 and 26 cents a month for two people. So I think it's so incredibly powerful what you can do here. Um, when you remove your personal information, now let's get into, uh, how to remove your spam texts.

Cause I think a lot of people are getting inundated with spam texts and it is something that is really becoming a major, major problem for a lot of people. In fact, over the course of. The last year alone, Robo texts have led to a loss of 101 million just in the last year alone. And so you have to learn how to stop these as they are starting to rise more and more and more.

So there are a couple of ways that spam texts come in. Number one is spam texts come from legitimate organizations. So they are similar to like telemarketing calls. These are people that are trying to sell you something. And so this is going to set the parameter because the spammers can actually utilize this same exact format that companies that you've signed up for their text messaging for, and they can start to claim that there's someone else.

So a lot of times people who have scam texts are claiming they are your bank. They are claiming either IRS, maybe the courts. And there's a bunch of different organizations that they try to act as if they are. And what they're really trying to do is they're trying to fish for your information. Now I'm not talking about fishing like you're going down to the lake to go fishing.

I'm talking about P H I S H. I N G and phishing is when they try to get your information by sending a link. Typically, you click that link and all of a sudden it triggers your information, um, and they can steal your information based on you filling out a some information and or, uh, they can take some of your information in a number of different ways.

Now, the ways that they get your phone number is they go through these legitimate companies that are data brokers, which we just talked about. And data brokers have your information and they can buy lists of your information. So sometimes when you Google your name and your phone number, it may not have all the places immediately that have your information, which delete me can help you with instead, what's going to come up.

is just everything that's online. But these data brokers have lists of your information that they sell to other companies. And so when they sell these to other companies, it's actually a real thing that they can legitimately do, and they do this for marketing purposes. But scammers can also buy this information.

This is the huge problem with data brokers that they sell your information because they can actually buy this information legally. So you want to get it removed from these data brokers. Really important that you do that. Now, how do you identify scam text? I'm going to give you some of the red flags that you absolutely need to look for because I'm starting to get these more and more and more.

And in fact, they're getting more and more clever as well. So I think this is really interesting to look at. So number one is the message asks you to click a link. So if it's from your favorite clothing company or if it's from your favorite store, don't click the link. Just go directly to what they're talking about.

Just go into the app or whatever else you utilize when you go shopping. Uh, if the message provides a phone number and asks you to call it, never, ever do that. Instead, look up the phone number yourself and make sure you're actually looking it up in the right place as well. If the message demands an urgent response.

So I know people that this has happened to where they get caught in a situation where it says really urgent response. I think money with Katie just actually had an episode about this, where she got a message in that said really urgent response from your bank. You got to take care of this. And she put in the information and it was a scammer.

I had another friend. This just happened to them as well. Urgent information from your bank and they sent in all the information. They just lost 7, 000 and this is something that's happening more and more. You think it will never happen to you, but it happens to very savvy people, especially if you're in a rush.

You're super busy. You're moving around. You got things going on left and right. You're in the messy middle and all of a sudden you have to go out and fill out this information really quick because you're just not thinking Thinking clearly. And so they catch people off guard all the time. They also catch the elderly off guard all the time who do not know how technology works.

And so make sure you're informing your parents or your grandparents about this stuff. It's really important to make sure they understand this as well. If there are spelling or grammar errors, absolutely don't even touch that. And then, If they're specifically asking for personal information, never, ever, ever do that.

Call the actual bank, make sure this is really them or call the actual folks, not in the phone number they give you, go look it up, go in your chase app or your ally app or Wells Fargo or wherever else you bank capital one and call them directly from the app. Or turn around your credit card or debit card and call the number on the back of your car.

That's even better because you know exactly where that number came from. And so that's kind of where you don't want to call any of those numbers whatsoever. Now, here's some options to stop spam texting. The real reason why we're talking about this is number one, never reply to these spam texts. If you reply, they know you're a real person.

They are going to inundate you. They're going to tell all their buddies and their friends, and they're all going to be texting you nonstop. Have you ever noticed, like, if you Pick up a scam phone call that when you pick up that phone call, all of a sudden you get 10 times more scam phone calls. The same thing with text.

It's gonna happen, and a lot of times they're gonna ask you to do things like write unsubscribe or stop. If you don't want these messages anymore, if you do that to a scam text, they know you're real, and they're gonna continue to be. Uh, folks who are definitely going to keep coming after you to is you can report it so you can actually do this in a number of different ways.

You can actually, you know, if it's an actual scam text and you can tell it's a scam text, you can report it to law enforcement agencies and the phone carriers. And there's a way to do this. If you forward the message to someone 7726, which actually spells spam. Um, you'll receive a message confirming it's been received and your phone carrier will actually use this data as part of their spam fighting efforts.

Um, and so that's really, really important. You can actually report this kind of stuff to, I don't really ever do that. Uh, cause I just don't feel like I have the time to go to forward it on, even though I'm just kind of lazy, but I have done it a couple of times before on stuff that I know they're trying to scan people out of big money.

And so I will do it on those when it, when it's a big deal. You can also activate the spam filter on your phone. So both Android and iPhone devices come with built in spam filters if you didn't know that. So if you want to block them on Android devices, you open your SMS application, you click on the setting icon, you click settings, and then you click spam filter.

Protection, and then you can toggle to enable spam protection. And then if you're doing it on an iPhone, shout out the blue message, people, you can open settings, then you click messages, you click unknown and spam, and you toggle on filter unknown senders. So you open settings, click messages, click unknown and spam, and then toggle on filter unknown senders.

But one thing I like to do too is you can activate your carriers spam protection system. So T Mobile, Sprint, AT& T, Verizon all have spam protection services as well. So T Mobile provides scam shield is what it's called. So you can look that up and it's free of charge to all customers. Sprint has a similar service to T Mobile service.

They've actually combined So they're like one company. Now, I think they're still one company. They might not be anymore, but they did combine, uh, in a service called call screener. So that's another one. AT& T has one called call protect. And then Verizon has one called call filter. So check out those four, depending on what your carrier is.

If you don't have those carriers, you have something like mint mobile or something else. I'm sure they have their own as well. And then you can protect yourself with a third party app. And so there are third party apps out there. Um, some of the ones that I know of are one is called Robo Killer and this app claims to eliminate 99% of robocalls and robo text on their platform.

Um, and they have it for both iOS and Android users. There's Vero, S-M-S-V-E-R-O-S-M-S, and this app works by blocking any text that includes words, which you have blacklisted. And so that's another one. And then NoMo Robo. It's N O M O Robo. It's similar to RoboKiller, and this app prides itself on blocking both spam texts and calls as well.

Now that one, uh, has a 14 day free trial, and then you need to pay 1. 99 a month after that. So, if it really does that, at 1. 99 a month, I think it's really, really important. Uh, and that's going to help protect you as well. So, starting to combine some of these things, turn on your spam filters on your phone.

Turn on the spam texts filter. Filters from your carrier and then getting yourself one of these apps if it's two bucks a month, that's 24 per year That's the same thing as like a chipotle burrito with double meat So, uh, you could probably block a lot of this stuff with a chipotle burrito with double meat nowadays So I think that's going to be a good one as well.

Uh, and then number six Is obviously addressing that root cause and removing your personal information like we talked about I'm going to delete me delete me Cheap as all get out with just a couple bucks a month. I think it is worth every single stinking dollar. I continue to renew my delete me every single month because I think it's so powerful what you can do with this.

And so by doing those things, I promise you, you're going to have way less spam texts, way less robocalls. You definitely don't want to have those. And you want to get rid of those because it just increases your risk. And what we want to do when it comes to protecting our personal information and protecting our financial information is we want to decrease this risk as much as possible.

And so because we want to do that, we got to make sure that we are just taking some of these precautions. Otherwise something is going to eventually happen. And that's the last thing I want for all of you. So listen, thank you guys so much for listening to this episode. Can I thank you guys enough for listening to this episode.

If you guys have any questions, please join the master money newsletter by going to master money. co slash newsletter and replying when we send those newsletters out every single week. If you have a question for these money Q and a's, that's the way to do it. That's the way I see them. I see them coming in.

We save those and we go through those questions, all these questions that today, all of these came through the, uh, people who are subscribed to the newsletter and they sent us an email. So thank you guys again for listening to this episode. I hope you have a wonderful rest of your week. Our entire goal with this podcast is to bring you as much value as possible.

And we hope we did that today. So subscribe to this podcast and we'll see you on the next episode.

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