OSPIRG’s Consumer Watch 

A summary of local and national consumer alerts from your local consumer advocates.

• Consumer Protection Agency’s nominated director’s time on the Senate floor nears– 

The Senate will soon vote on whether to confirm Richard Cordray as the director of the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The Bureau does not gain its full authority to protect the public, until it has a director in place. The main ways which a fully staffed CFPB can protect consumers are listed in OSPIRG’s report last summer, 10 Reasons We Need the CFPB Now, see three reasons below:

1: Predatory mortgages – Regulation of uncheck mortgages.
2: Credit cards– The CFPB will keep unfair credit card practices in check.
3: Have bank fees been in the news lately? The CFPB can regulate overpriced overdraft fees.

•Stop Web Piracy?

There has been much online talk about the internet piracy act being considered by Congress. Consumer groups have thrown their hat into the ring to express concern that the bill could close off online exchanges that provide lower prices for consumers, reduce online security, and allow for anti-consumer practices by online service providers.

We are particularly troubled that the bill could put a stop to numerous OSPIRG Student efforts to lower the cost of textbooks as noted above. Read the full letter sent by consumer groups to congress here.