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Identity Theft

Can Consumers Fight Back Against Identity Theft?

Identity theft is not a difficult crime to perpetrate in this age of information. The idea that a thief could gain access to your identity information or personal data is not as implausible as you might think--social security number misuse has increased over the last two years, resulting in a variety of credit-related identity theft crimes.

You can fight back against identity theft by learning how identity theft occurs, and by actively monitoring your credit report for unauthorized account use on a regular basis with our credit check monitoring service. Your credit report will list any new credit report activity on accounts you havenít been using, as well as new credit report accounts that you did not open.

Order Your Credit Check Monitoring Service Now to protect yourself from identity theft.

One of the best ways to keep track of new information that is added to your credit report is the Credit Check Monitoring Service, which provides Online Credit Check Monitoring Alerts monthly to inform you of new derogatory credit report information, recent inquiries into your credit report, and several indicators of possible identity theft.

Sign up for credit check monitoring service and youíll get a free credit report when you sign up for a free 30-day trial of credit check monitoring to protect you from identity theft.

To have credit report information at your fingertips is the best way to shut an identity thief down--you can begin the process of notifying your creditors of the fraud, changing your passwords, and closing down fraudulent accounts before they wind up in the hands of collectors and compromise your good credit.

How identity theft and Identity Theft Occur

Specific personal data, such as your Social Security number, home address and motherís maiden name, can be all a thief needs to obtain a fraudulent driverís license, take over existing bank or credit accounts, divert card statements to a different address, or even apply for new credit card accounts under your name. Thieves can obtain this information in variety of ways, including fishing through trash for account statements, lifting cards from lost or stolen purses, wallets and briefcases, or through telephone or Internet scams.

How to Prevent Credit Fraud and Identity Theft

Customers may be in a position to prevent potential identity theft by closely guarding their personal data. For example, never give out your Social Security number over the phone unless you know the company you are dealing with and have initiated the call.

Similarly, if your motherís maiden name is not likely to be a secure password, consider changing it to something a little more difficult for a thief to obtain. Also, carry only the cards you are actually going to use, and leave official documents like Social Security cards, passports and birth certificates at home or in a safety deposit box.

Account Takeover Fraud using Identity Theft

Credit card account statements contain a lot of sensitive information that you donít want thieves to get a hold of, and even store receipts will frequently have your credit card number printed on them. Sometimes an account number is all a thief needs to make charges and obtain cash advances. Itís a good idea to shred all financial documents before discarding them.

A thief in possession of sensitive information about you may also be able to go one step further, and commit account takeover fraud, simply by calling your creditor, reading off your account number, a partial Social Security number and your motherís maiden name, and asking them to change the mailing address on the account. For this reason, if you donít receive a credit card statement on time, you should call your creditor immediately to verify that the address has not been changed.

Checking your credit report may also reveal activity on an account you donít use--get a FREE copy of your credit report to see your currently open accounts, and stay on top of the situation with the Credit Check Monitoring Service.

Pre-Approved Credit Offers

Another source of potential identity theft is pre-approved credit offers. A thief who intercepts one may fill out the application and change the address to obtain a credit card in your name for which you will never receive a statement. (To combat this, some creditors will not issue a card to a new address on a pre-approved offer certificate, but this policy isnít universal.) This makes checking your credit report especially important, because it will show you if there are accounts being reported in your name of which you are not aware.

The thief may even make the minimum payments for a while, until such time as the card is maxed out. Then the account would eventually be turned over for collections--in your name, and listed on your credit report. If you would like to sign up for the Credit Check Monitoring Service, click here. Youíll get a free copy of your credit report when you sign up for a free 30-day trial.

The Credit Check Monitoring Service Can Help protect from Identity Theft

In many cases, the only way youíll catch identity theft early is by obtaining a copy of your credit report. However, most consumers may not have time to order a copy of their credit report on a month-by-month basis, and read through all the information looking for the items that may indicate possible identity theft.

Thatís why the Credit Check Monitoring Service is ideal for consumers who want to keep current on their credit information. At roughly half the cost of ordering your credit report every month, the Credit Check Monitoring Service provides Online Monthly Monitoring Alerts that show you only recent changes for easy reference. In addition, you can obtain unlimited free copies of your credit report at any time during your paid membership!

Order credit check monitoring service now and get your FREE credit report online instantly!
 

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(c) 2000 ConsumerInfo.Com This article is the copyright of ConsumerInfo.Com and is reprinted with their permission. ConsumerInfo.com is a registered trademark of ConsumerInfo.Com, Inc. All other names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

Information provided by ConsumerInfo.Com is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional financial or credit advice.

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