True Link Financial

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True Link Financial Inc. is a financial services company based in San Francisco, California ​ that offers investment accounts and debit cards ​ designed for retirees ​. The company has received investment from Y Combinator ​, Cambia, Mitch Kapor ​, Alexis Ohanian ​, Eric Ries ​, and Matt Cutts ​. [5] [7] [6]

History

True Link CEO Kai Stinchcombe ​'s motivation to start True Link came after his grandmother Ruth was the victim of fraud. Ruth had lost tens of thousands of dollars of her retirement savings writing multiple checks to fake charities every month. After this horrible experience, Kai began researching the financial services industry and found there were few protections for retired people. [4]

In 2012, Kai partnered with Claire McDonnell to start True Link Financial, the type of financial institution that he could trust to puts customers’ best interests first and use technology to get the best, most ethical tools in the hands of those who need them. [4]

Investment methodology for retirees

True Link uses bond laddering ​ to reduce interest rate risk ​, and a time-based investment strategy described by experts as a "strategy for a lifetime of income." [16] ​ The investment allocations are based on Modern portfolio theory ​ and include shares ​ and bonds as well as an annuity ​ component in some cases. [8]

Protection from fraud and elder abuse

True Link offers a Visa card ​ with controls to prevent common types of fraud ​ and financial abuse ​ targeting the elderly. In addition to fraud-detection algorithms ​ developed by the company, the card can be customized to restrict telemarketer purchases across the board, block certain charitable organizations ​ and allow others, set limits on ATM usage and receive text messages, or selectively block only a few problematic merchants. [9] [10] [11] [12] It takes about five minutes to sign up, and its customers save an average of $2,340 per year by using the True Link card. [5] [13] ​ True Link is the only card with these protective features. [14] [15]

According to True Link's research, fraud targeting seniors is a $36.5 billion per year problem. [20] [18] [17] True Link uses fraud detection algorithms and maintains a large database filled with scams and suspicious merchants, [10] [11] [22] [23] ​ and members of True Link's data science team are frequently cited as experts on scams and fraud targeting the elderly. [24] [25] [26] [27]

Other customers

True Link provides services to people with disabilities ​, to people recovering from addiction ​, to special needs trust ​, pooled trusts and representative payees ​. [28] [29] ​ In August 2016, True Link acquired Next Step Network LLC., a company that offers payment cards to people recovering from addiction. [28] [30] [31]

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