It is essential to acquire credit monitoring services immediately after you open a credit or debit account. Such services are vital to prevent the highly prevalent identity theft crisis in the US and other developing countries. The services will enable you to keep track of changes in your credit report and alert you promptly of any significant changes in the account. Most people are content with checking their monthly account statements for activities related to their transactions. Although this is a smart move, it is still limited in terms of scope. The most damaging identity theft cases involve the use of credit accounts that you are not even aware of.
Identity thieves have come up with new ways of siphoning money from innocent individuals. This normally entails opening accounts with your name and social security number without your knowledge. Your credit report contains confidential information about your personal identity. This includes your full name, home address, social security number, account information, mortgage information, account history, judgments, liens and bankruptcy reports. Identity theft occurs when someone accesses such information and uses it to commit fraud.
Such criminals will normally open credit accounts with this information and run up large balances on your name. Obviously they do not pay these balances and the delinquent credit card is charged on your name. This underscores the value of credit monitoring services for all card holders. Credit reporting agencies have efficient systems that ensure protection of your confidential information on their servers. So where do these criminals obtain your personal information?
There are hackers who may obtain your personal information whenever you use unsecure wireless networks to conduct financial transactions. For instance, there are fake websites that pose as free credit report services, while in reality they are scammer’s hell bent on retrieving your personal information. Other websites such as downloading domains/torrents and porn sites have also been known to be hacker mainstays. Any information entered therein, including credit card pin numbers can be stolen and used to defraud you. Careless dumping of confidential paperwork may also subject you to identity theft. Some criminals have been known to go as far as ransacking your garbage to retrieve your personal documents. As such, you must always shred any financial statements and bank slips before throwing them in the garbage.
It is always advisable to exercise caution for your credit account to prevent identity theft. This may entail employing the services of a credit monitoring services provider. The three credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion all have their independent credit monitoring services that are charged different. You can also hire private companies to keep track of your spending and guard your financial integrity. Currently, there is even an identity theft insurance policy that is meant to protect the holder from financial ruin in case of impersonation.