“Taps” Follow-up, Credit Card Calls, Document Shredding

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DEAR SUN SPOTS: Regarding the request for a bugler to play taps for a military veteran, the funeral home you are working with should be able to make those arrangements for you. If you need to do this yourself, call the Bureau of Veterans’ Services Memorial Cemetery System at 287-3481 for an honor guard to attend your loved one. — Tricia, no town

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Many decades ago someone wrote in my yearbook, “Keep asking those questions!” I’m thankful that Sun Spots is available to answer questions for so many people!

We (especially senior citizens) are warned to be aware of phone scams. I keep receiving recorded calls from someone with a British accent that interest rates on credit cards will be going up next year and that minimum payments will double. An offer is made that will eliminate interest for one year just by pressing 1. Is this a scam? I have heard a similar ad during Red Sox radio broadcasts. Is it safe to inquire by responding to the telemarketer that keeps calling at inconvenient times? There are also calls that begin, “This is not a solicitation call.” If, indeed, credit card payments are going to double, it will adversely affect many people. What can we do, short of completely paying off total balances? Thank you for your help. No name, no town

ANSWER: Hang up on these scam calls. If you are really concerned, contact your credit card companies directly to ask if they’re planning on raising your interest rates. Chances are they are not, or you would have received notification from them in the mail. Never give out personal information, especially your bank account and Social Security numbers to anyone on the phone unless you initiated the call yourself.

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Since you’re a senior citizen, AARP is a good resource to learn about phone scams. If you aren’t already a member, you can become one for just $12 (with auto-renew) or $16 per year. This is a real bargain with numerous benefits including a monthly magazine and newsletter with fantastic information.

If you haven’t already, you may also want to register your telephone number with the Do Not Call Registry: Call 1-888-382-1222. You can also do this online at www.donotcall.gov/register. These worrisome calls should then stop within 31 days. If they don’t, you can lodge a complaint with the registry.

Dear Sun Spots: On June 9, you published that Community Credit Union in Auburn does shredding for people but when I went in, they told me the shredding was for members only. Help! — No name, no town

ANSWER: I spoke with someone in the marketing department at Community Credit Union recently and she explained their quarterly shredding events are, indeed, for members only. However, once a year around Earth Day in April, the credit union hosts a Community Recycle Day where everyone can come in and leave their documents to be shredded.

Readers, where do you get your shredding done for free?

Use the QR code to go to Sun Spots online for additional information and links. This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can be emailed to sunspots@sunjournal.com, tweeted @SJ_SunSpots or posted on the Sun Spots Facebook page at facebook.com/SunJournalSunSpots. This column can also be read online at sunjournal.com/sunspots. We’ve joined Pinterest at pinterest.com/sj_sunspots.

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