The payday lender, Cash Genie, has been ordered to pay £20m to people they’ve ripped off. The lender was told by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to dole out the money to more than 92,000 customers.
Turns out that they’re been ripping off customers in a number of ways, with Cash Genie charging fees which they were not entitled to, according to customer contracts. In some cases, they charged people who weren’t able to repay their loans £50 to transfer them to their own debt collection firm, Twyford Developments.
Basically, they were taking money needlessly from people who were already struggling with debt.
It transpires that Cash Genie were also rolling over and refinancing loans without customers’ consent, which of course, all means that people in financial hardship were being hit with extra interest and additional costs.
Cash Genie also traded as the online brands txtmecash and paydayiseveryday, with customers advised to go to these websites on the promise of a fresh loan. Then, when customers went to these sites, they were used to harvest banking information so they could take payments from existing loans without permission.
So, Cash Genie will reimburse some people and write-off the debts of others.
Linda Woodall of the FCA said: “We expect all firms to notify us of any unacceptable past or current practices and provide appropriate redress to anyone affected.”
What Do I Do Next If I Was A Cash Genie Customer?
For the time being, if you’ve been swindled by Cash Genie, you don’t need to do anything. Cash Genie is going to contact affected customers by 18th September.
For the time being, sit tight and wait for Cash Genie to get in touch with you. Do not appoint a claims management company to sort this out either, as they’ll charge you for a service that you won’t need.
If you feel that it is important to talk to someone, you can contact the Cash Genie Customer Service team on 0333 366 0023, or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or by letter at Cash Genie, 2 Reavell Place, Ipswich, Suffolk IP2 0ET.
If you’d prefer, you can get in touch with the FCA by calling 0800 111 6768 or 0300 500 8082, or email them at email@example.com.
Are you going to, or through, Calais? Well, things have been a bit tricky down there, thanks to a spate of protests.
The possibility of more disruption to cross-Channel services, thanks to industrial action, is likely, so we’re going to compile all the information you need, should you get caught up in it, or would like to prepare yourself if you’re travelling to France.
Firstly, you should get in touch with your travel operator and see what they say about any journeys you’ve booked. The same goes for those travelling across the channel from Dover/Folkestone to the Port of Calais.
Should you require an exchange for your travel tickets, contact your operator. Visit the ABTA site if you want to brush up on your rights first.
If you’re planning on an alternative route, you might want to look at this map, which shows you other ways into France.
Are you already in France and need some emergency assistance? The French emergency services are contacted by dialling 112. If you’d prefer to deal with the British Embassy, call 00 33 (0)1 44 51 31 00.
Here are the contacts for some of the cross-channel operators.
P&O Ferries: +44 (0) 800 13 0030
Eurotunnel: @LeShuttle +44 (0) 8444 63 0000 (24 hour pre-recorded travel information), +44 (0) 8443 35 35 35, +33 (0) 810 63 03 04
Brittany Ferries: @Brittanyferries +44 (0) 1752 648 637
Condor Ferries: @CF_Travel_News +44 (0) 1202 207 216, St Malo +44 (0) 825 165 463, Cherbourg +33 (0) 233 88 44 88
Stena: @StenalineUK +44 (0) 8447 70 70 70
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) have advised against all travel to within 10 km of the border with Syria. You should not go, unless it is absolutely essential, to the remaining areas of Sirnak, Mardin, Sanliurfa, Gaziantep, Kilis and Hatay provinces, as well as Siirt, Tunceli and Hakkari provinces.
There’s been a lot of trouble in Turkey of late. There’s a high threat from terrorism in Turkey, and according to the FCO, “there are active terrorist groups throughout the country. These include domestic religious extremist and ideological groups, and international groups involved in the conflict in Syria. Attacks could be indiscriminate and could affect places visited by foreigners.”
They add: “The terrorist group DHKP-C (Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front) has launched a series of attacks in Istanbul in 2015 targeting the Turkish police and judiciary. On 5 June, two people were killed and many injured by an explosion at an HDP rally in Diyarbakir. On 9 June, 4 people were killed in an attack in Diyarbakir. You should exercise caution.”
“Border crossings into Syria and nearby locations have also been targeted. On 20 July, a suicide bomber killed at least 28 people and injured over 100 others in Suruc, Sanlurfa.”
They add that there’s been armed assaults, suicide bombings, car bombings and rocket attacks and improvised explosive devices left in bins, in crowded areas and on public transport. What should concern you, is that there’s a heightened threat of terrorist attacks against UK interests and British nationals. There is also a threat of kidnapping near the Syrian border in Turkey.
Contacts For Those Travelling In Turkey
If you require urgent help contact the consular assistance team on 020 7008 1500 which is available 24 hours. If you’re in Turkey and need emergency help, please contact the British Embassy Ankara.
Şehit Ersan Caddesi 46/A
Telephone: +90 312 455 33 44
Fax: +90 312 455 33 52
Have you done a system update on your PS4, and found that you’re struggling to load games? Or have the discs started to get stuck in your console? Well, there’s a bunch of things you can try out before you send it in for a fix. There’s nothing (literally nothing, obviously) that having nothing to play video games on, so these fixes will be quicker than sending it away.
Is Your Disc Clean?
This is stating the obvious to some, but make sure the disc you’re using is free from fingerprints or scratches. If it is scratched to buggery, there’s nothing you can do about that, but if your disc is mucky, then give it a clean. It is up to you whether you go for the ‘Just Wipe It On Your T-Shirt’ move, or whether you get down the shops and buy a microfibre cloth and some rubbing alcohol.
Switch It Off and On Again
‘Have you tried switching it off and on again?’ This is a cliche, but it sometimes works. Switch your console off for 30 seconds and unplug all the leads out of it. Leave it a bit (go and stick the kettle on or whatever) and then turn it on again. If that doesn’t work, make sure you’re not booting it up in Rest Mode. Shut your PS4 down fully with no disc in, and then turn it on, pop the game in, and see how that suits you.
Have You Rebuilt The Database?
Okay, this sounds frightening, but it really isn’t. To rebuild the database, turn-off the PS4 and unplug the power cable. Wait 10 seconds, and then plug the cord back in. Then, hold down the power button (keep holding it down) until you hear a second beep – this starts your console in Safe Mode. Option 5 will allow you to rebuild the database. Basically, all you’re doing is building a new database for all your content. You must NOT switch your PS4 off in the middle of this and it could take a while to do, so be patient.
The screen looks like this
Is Your Game Data Corrupted?
Sometimes, the data you’ve saved is corrupted. This is an easy fix. Basically, go through your menus and delete the game, including your saved data, then pop the disc back in and reinstall it. Naturally, you’ll lose your saved game, but that isn’t the end of the world.
Is Your PS4 Disc Stuck?
Okay. This hear is a little bit trickier, as you’ll need to take your PS4 to pieces. It isn’t a hard job to do, but it might give you the fear. Get in touch with Sony PS4 Customer Service Helpline at 0203 538 2665 if you’d rather not open up your console. Read all these instructions first before diving in, to see if this looks doable to you. You’ll need a slender Phillips-head screwdriver and a torch.
If you fancy a crack at it, then here’s what you do. Fully turn off your PS4, unplug all the cables and then, on a clean, flat surface (a table is better than doing it on the carpet) place your console in front of you so the front of the system is on the left and the PS logo is on the top of the PS4, on the right – like so.
Put the palms of your hands on the glossy panel at the top and, with your fingers resting on the bit of the console furthest away from you, apply a small amount of pressure near the seam, and slide the glossy panel away from you. Be gentle. Don’t go mad, or you’ll break it and we’re not being held responsible for that.
You’ll hear a click and the panel will move about 1/4″. You can now lift the panel off, from the left side. Now, you’ll have to find the manual eject screw.
You should be able to see two sets of vents along the outer left edge. You’ll see one slot that is set apart from the rest. Use the torch off your phone (or an actual torch) and look down it. You’ll see the manual eject screw here.
Grab a slender Phillips-head screwdriver (a jeweller’s screwdriver is your best bet) and pop it into the slot, turning the screw anti-clockwise until you can see the disc peek out of the disc slot. The screw turns very easily and after 4 or 5 rotations, your disc should be peering out enough for you to pull it out by hand.
Now, you have to put it back together. So, replace the glossy panel by sliding it back into place until you hear the click. Then, connect all your relevant cables and turn it back on, and you should be away!
You might be wondering how to do it, because you might not be as tech savvie as everyone on the internet. Don’t sweat it – we’re here to guide you through it.
What Do I Need?
Right, you’ll need one of the following – an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, an iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3, an Apple Watch that you’ve synced-up with your iPhone 5/iPhone 5c/iPhone 5s/iPhone 6/iPhone 6 Plus. Your phone needs to be running on iOS 8.3 or above. If you think you need to update your operating system, click here to sort that out.
You will also need to have your fingerprint with Touch ID, as well as having an iCloud account on a phone that has the United Kingdom set at the region. And of course, you’ll need a credit or debit card from a bank that is supporting Apple Pay.
I’m Not Sure If My Bank Supports Apple Pay!
The short answer is that Barclays haven’t signed-up with Apple yet. The long answer is that RBS, Nat West, Nationwide, Ulster Bank, MBNA, Santander, are. In the next 4 weeks, HSBC will have joined-in too. Later in the year, the Bank of Scotland, Lloyds, Halifax, M&S Bank and TSB Bank will be on board too.
So How Do I Set Up Apple Pay On My Device?
Get on your device and open Passbook. If you need to go through the menus, go to Settings, then hit Passbook and Apple Pay. There, you’ll add your card by hitting the plus symbol. Or, it might say Add Credit or Debit Card. Depends which device you’re adding it to. You might have already added your card when you linked it with your iTunes account, in which case, you’ll only have to pop in your security code.
You’ll click ‘Next’ to get everything verified with your bank and, once they’ve given you the all-clear, you’re set. In the Passbook section, you can add a number of cards, if you like.
Where Can I Use Apple Pay?
There’s over 250,000 retailers who will be accepting Apple Pay, and we’re certainly not going to list them all here. You’ll see that some shops have signs saying they accept Apple Pay. However, some of the bigger stores include Lidl, Boots, M&S, the Post Office, McDonald’s, Waitrose, Costa, KFC, Starbucks, BP, Wagamama, Subway and Nando’s.
More and more shops will be getting down with Apple Pay in the coming months. You can also use it like an Oyster Card on the readers on London’s public transport.
So How Am I Supposed To Use The Thing?
Have you done a contactless payment with your debit card? If so, very similar to that. If not, it is really straightforward.
Hold your phone over the card reader with your thumb/finger (the one you stored with Touch ID – so sucks to be you if you did it with your nipple or dog’s nose) on the home button, and Passbook will automatically kick in. Your device will vibrate and make a ping! noise, and your payment is done. Just to be extra thorough, your device will day ‘Done’ on the screen.
If you’re planning on using it through your Apple Watch, then, when making a payment, double-click the side button to get your card up, then hold it next to the card reader and, again, it’ll vibrate and ping!, and you’re away.
What Is An iPhone?
Don’t you worry. You can still pay for things with money. Don’t get worked up about it all.
Apple are getting set to drop their latest operating system – the iOS 9 – which will be available some time in Autumn… but you can get it now. Apple have released the public beta version (which means it might have some things in it that need ironing out), which means you can get stuck into it while Apple put the finishing touches to it.
What’s new? Well, iOS 9 has a bunch of new things, including the much welcomed addition of highlighting when you’ve put the capslock on, when composing text on your iPhone or iPad. There’s also a souped-up version of the Notes app, where you can doodle things with your finger and an improved in-built Maps app, which shows you public transport maps and the like.
Nothing revolutionary, but it looks like the additions will be useful enough.
On the iPad, iOS9 will allow you to multitask, by allowing you to use multiple programs and apps at the same time.Video playback will sits in the corner of other opened apps, and there’ll be a shortcut bar for other applications.
The whole thing looks a little tidier too, which means a new font and new logos for all the apps.
So how to do get the beta version? Well, the first thing you should do, is back up your iPhone or iPad. Seeing as this is a work-in-progress version of the operating system, it means that it could be a little temperamental; that means you should have a back-up to revert to, should it end up doing your head in.
It should be very stable, but don’t take any chances.
Sign yourself up for Apple’s testing programme at beta.apple.com/sp/betaprogram and click the blue sign up button. Put your Apple ID in there and you’re nearly on your way. Make sure you are using the same ID you use on the iOS device you will be installing the new software on.
Then, on your chosen device, go to beta.apple.com and, using Safari, sign-in. Then, you can scroll to the ‘step two’ bit of the page and hit ‘download profile’. There, you’ll be redirected to your device’s Settings app, where you can tap the ‘install’ button. Stick in the pin for your device, agree to the T&Cs, and then restart your device.
Once it has restarted, launch the Settings app, hit ‘general’ then ‘software update’ and iOS 9 will waiting there, to install once you press ‘update’.
The new Samsung Galaxy S6 is a great little phone, but unlike others, you can’t remove the battery. This is, of course, a problem if your phone freezes and you want to get it going again. With most phones, you remove and pop the battery back in, and you’re away.
So what to do if you’ve got an unresponsive S6?
The simple answer is to do a soft reset. You do that by pressing down the power button for around 6 seconds and it should turn off.
If that doesn’t work, don’t worry. Press and hold the power key and the volume down key, simultaneously for more than 7 seconds, and that will restart your phone.
If you do that, your device should restart like nothing ever happened. All your photos and everything will be exactly where you left them.
If there’s a bigger problem, your phone might reboot into the new maintenance mode. Here, you’ll see options, which you can scroll through with your volume buttons. Here, you can choose ‘normal boot’, which will restart your phone as normal. Or, if want to get rid of a troublesome app, you can start it in ‘safe mode’. Or, you can go for ‘factory reset’, which will delete everything off your phone and revert your handset to the state it was when you bought it.
Should all these things not work, and you don’t want to get under the hood, then it is time to ring up the people you bought it from to see what they can do for you.
The Tube strike kicks off today which, naturally, is of zero concern to anyone outside of London, apart from laughing at the misfortune of those in the capital.
If you do live in London, or are currently on holiday there, then here’s some things you might want to know.
If you’re navigating the city by working out the proximity of things to various Tube stops, if you’ve decided to walk, here’s a great map which shows you how close the Underground stations are to each other, on foot.
You can click on that map to enlarge. If it doesn’t work, check out the site of Joe Watson and Aryven Arasen, who put the map together. The map also includes some of the more famous landmarks of the city which you can gawp at while you use your legs.
If that doesn’t do it for you, you could jump on a Santander Cycle (the Artist Formerly Known As Boris Bike). On the cycling scheme website, you can plan your journey while the trains aren’t running today and tomorrow.
Of course, the buses will be chaos during this strike, and the roads are likely to be congested from the increase in cars, taxis and whatever else. If you like, you could use the Thames Clipper boat service, which stops include Putney, Wandsworth Riverside, Chelsea Harbour, London Eye, Embankment, Blackfriars, Bankside, London Bridge, Tower Hill, Canary Wharf and Greenwich. There will be extra services between Central London and Canary Wharf and between Central London and Putney.
You’re advised to complete your Tube journeys by 6pm on Wednesday, and travel earlier if possible. It is thought that the Tube will be “exceptionally busy” between 4pm and 6pm and will begin to stop running after this time. There will be no Tubes in action at all on the Thursday and the disruption may go on into Friday morning.
So there you go – cycle, travel by boat, walk, catch a bus or, get a taxi. If you can’t be bothered with all that, throw a sickie from work.
Figures released by the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) show that commuters feel that it is pretty futile complaining about train operators. The report shows that, despite having the most cancellations and late-running services, Southern received a fraction of the average complaints that Virgin got.
Virgin received around 24 times more complaints per passenger journey than Southern, with the pair being the most complained about. It seems that this is a particular problem in London, with the five operators getting the fewest complaints, despite the performance of the services suggesting otherwise.
David Sidebottom, passenger director of Transport Focus, said: “The weary commuter doesn’t complain any more, sadly, because the train is perpetually delayed or you can’t ever get a seat, and has given up on the system.”
Sidebottom added that longer-distance operators tend to pick up more complaints, thanks to the nature of the travel: “The impact and value of that particular journey is of a different magnitude; but the long-distance operators encourage people to complain when things go wrong – it’s what a good business does. It builds up trust. They don’t want disgruntled customers.”
“With commuter trains, these are harder things to work out and to get sorted, but you end up with the kind of things we’re seeing in the south-east at the moment. We do want commuter train operators to do more.”
The Beats 1 Radio will be free for the foreseeable future, but if you signed up for Apple’s music streaming service, you’ll end up getting charged for it and, obviously, Apple already has your credit card details. Remember? When you set up your iTunes account, you put your details in there? So even if you’re not using it, or don’t like it, you could end up seeing charges on your bank account.
So what happens if you don’t want to pay for it?
Well, you can disable auto-renewal of your Apple Music subscription, so you don’t get any nasty surprises. If you’re on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, here is what you have to do.
Open up the Music app, and then hit the icon that looks like a person, in the top-left of the screen. Sign-in and all that. Then, hit View Apple ID (you might have to put your password in again) and then, under the Subscriptions bit, press the Manage button. There, you’ll see a thing that says Renew Options. In there, you’ll be able to switch Automatic Renewal to off.
As well as being exploited by a Chinese hacker crew, it has now been added to the Magnitude exploit kit, which enables amateur malware authors to build all manner of software which could make your life difficult. There’s already been some attempts to install ransomware on some computers.
Adobe have confirmed that the flaw is being jumped on by hackers, especially those using Internet Explorer on Windows 7 and Firefox on Windows XP. Even if you aren’t using these things, you should still sort your life out and update your Flash.
If you prefer, you can just get rid of Flash. As most computers come with it built-in, even though it isn’t the crucial thing it once was, this means hackers are always tempted to attack it.
If you’re using Chrome, your browser updates it automatically. If not, click here to see if you have the latest version of Flash and, if you don’t, update it now.
Now it is here, what do you need to know about it? If you said ‘nothing’, then feel free to stop reading this article and watch a video of people doing idiotic things instead. If you do want to know what’s going on, here’s the lowdown.
What is it?
Well, Apple Music is like Spotify. There’s a load of tunes on a service and you can listen to them and it is all very straightforward. However, one slight difference is that Apple Music has a thing called Beats 1, which is a radio station with some famous DJs on it like Zane Lowe who used to be on Radio 1 and Ebro from NYC’s Hot 97.
It’ll cost you £9.99 per month. There’s no free version like Spotify. There is a 3 month trial which is free. There’ll also be a family plan, which allows six people to use Apple Music for £15 a month. Spotify have exactly the same family plan.
What’s so special about it?
Well, some people will like it because it looks and feels so Apple-y. They’ve also managed to negotiate with Taylor Swift and have permission to stream her new album ’1989′. If you don’t like Apple or Taylor Swift, these aren’t going to draw you in. However, if Apple can get exclusives that say, Spotify can’t, that could sway some music nuts.
When is it available?
Update your iPhone or iPad and it is available, right now. Later in the year, it’ll be available on Android too. You’ll also have to wait for it to become available on OS X.
What else do I need to know?
Nothing. That’s basically it. It is a streaming service like the other streaming services.
Today, the 29th June 2015, the currency of Greece is still the Euro. It is advised that you take other forms of payment with you, as well as cash. Make sure you’ve got your debit card and/or credit card. However, there’s a possibility that Greek banking services (including service of ATMs and the processing of credit card payments) could become limited at short notice.
You need to make sure you have enough in Euros to cover any emergencies.
There’s also a lot of strike action going on over there, so there can be disruption to public transport in and out of Greece. There’s also a lot of demonstrations going down, especially in Athens. The government have a dedicated page regarding planned major strikes and demos, which you can see here.
More worryingly, there’s a ‘general threat’ of terrorism and acts of political violence, and again, there’s a dedicated page where you can keep informed about all that, here.
If you’re in Greece and you need to call the emergency services, the number is 112. If you have your UK mobile with you, you can dial 999 and it will automatically put you through to the Greek emergency services.
The circletickets.com site isn’t online any more, at it looks like their tickets won’t ever be showing up.
Action Fraud have received 228 reports of ticket fraud relating to the company, which has subsequently been passed onto the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau. Obviously, best to give anything relating to this company a wide berth for the foreseeable.
It doesn’t look like you’ll be able to get your hands on your tickets, which is a kick in the teeth, but you might be able to get your money back.
Like most dodgy transactions, if you paid for goods with your credit card and spent over £100, you should be able to get your cash back under the Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. You need to contact the people you have your credit card with for that.
If you spent less, or paid by direct debit or debit card, you can ask the people you have your card with to use chargeback in order to get you your money back.
Also, if you think you’ve been done out of money fraudulently, then you should be a good sport and report any dodgy companies to Action Fraud.