Christian Credit Report Identity Theft
In an age of technology, Christian credit report identity theft is inevitable. Easy access to private information becomes consumer and theft friendly. People want faster service with little fuss on their part. The faster and fewer hassles involved in service and obtaining private information usually related to a service, the easier the process for thieves to steal a person's identity. An individual's responsibility lies in protecting them self from credit report identity theft. A person shows responsibility when they access a free yearly report. By federal law, a person can obtain a free credit report one time a year. Obtaining the account is not the only step needed. A person needed to know what the credit report, also known as a credit history, says and how to interpret what the account shows. The history is a look into an individual's past and present financial, personal, and legal details. The history looks at amounts borrowed or paid. In reviewing the history, an individual becomes proactive and can take preemptive measures to avoid credit report identity theft.
In familiarizing oneself with the report's information, an individual will see when fraud and errors occur and if credit report identity theft occurred. Other ways to know if identity theft happened involves applying for loans and being rejected or being offered higher interest rates. Higher interest rates, larger down payments, or rejection can show that a person's credit score on the report is low. A loan officer will determine the worthiness of a loan applicant based on what the history shows. Loan worthiness is reflected by past and present payments, the ability and willingness to make payments on time, and what bank records depict, such as amounts and times of deposits, withdrawals, and current balances. Balances are reviewed through a standpoint of monthly, yearly, and average transactions.
Technology enables data breach. Breaches occur through stolen passwords, a computer virus, or out-of-date firewalls. To better protect oneself from credit report identity theft, a person should take a few precautions when making transactions or handing out personal information over the Internet. Computers should be updated on a regular basis to keep current in firewall protection and the latest virus protectors. A person should never keep passwords close to the computer and should change passwords on a regular basis. An individual should only hand out private information if companies and sites offer data protection and encryption services. Encryption is a special means of protection that allows computers to foresee that the person obtaining or giving information is who him or her say they are. Other methods involved in Internet security breach involve scams. Some companies and individuals make a living by swindling others of their cash or personal information. Emails sent from an unknown sender must not be opened. Personal information should never be given if any part of the transaction does not seem right. Most companies offer encryption technology for security and privacy protection. To be safe, a person should access a correct site by typing out the correct web address and then saving the accessed location as a bookmark. Many company sites, government sites, and individual sites will ask or provide an option for bookmarking.
Credit report identity theft also occurs when personal items, such as wallets and purses, are stolen. Measures for protection and ascertaining one's rights ought to happen as soon as identity theft occurs. When theft occurs, the victim of theft must call their bank, creditors, and other financial and personal entities to warn of potential credit report identity theft and determine the proper methods to avoid further theft and fraudulent occurrences. The victim needs to call the police and file the appropriate paperwork. The victim needs to be respectful but firm in filing reports and know what a victim's rights are. Aggressive action will help further protect and restore a person's privacy. The following is a list of aggressive moves a victim should potentially take: issuing a security freeze or fraud alert on all accounts by creditors, receiving replacement cards with new numbers, being aware of false collection companies, and making contact via phone and written methods.
If involved in credit report identity theft, the victim should keep records of all communication and other transactions. The best recording methods involve keeping track of date and time of call or transaction, the name and department of the customer service representative at the time of communication. If possible, notes of the discussion should be taken to the person's best ability. In communicating with companies, a person should be extremely cautious with whom he or she speaks. Thieves have taken the identity of collections agencies. An individual needs to be wary of anyone trying to obtain private data. If anyone calls claiming to be a collector of an unpaid bill, an individual must not give in to the persistence of the 'collector' on the other end of the line. For this reason, great importance lies in knowing what a person's past and present information says. An individual should never pay, even a portion, of a bill if he or she does not believe money is owed or does not know the 'collection' companies claim. Legal assistance happens with greater ability if the victim of fraud has not caused further damaged by giving out more information that is personal, other data, or made a payment to a 'creditor' or 'collector'. "Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God" (Revelation 3:2).
Christian Credit Report MonitoringCredit report monitoring has become one of the mantras sung by the United States government and more specifically, the Federal Trade Commission. Though the government often seems more than happy to take charge of much our lives, this is a polar opposite shift which has the nation's leaders yelling for all consumers to take some responsibility for their own credit welfare. Since the nation is built on borrowing and runs on borrowing, the conventional wisdom would suggest that credit report monitoring is actually a pretty important thing to do, especially with criminals who are just waiting to take over our identity and do all kinds of very weird things with our money. Are stories of stolen charge card numbers resulting in twenty cases of Ding Dongs going on the credit account of some innocent victim weird enough? But there are also recreational vehicles, around the world cruises and tickets to a rodeo. The sad thing about all of this is that in many of these cases, the victims had no idea this was occurring until gigantic bills started showing up in the mail.
Someone has said recently that credit report monitoring ought to be as important as watching a rattlesnake on the front floorboard of our car while on the Autobahn. So if that is true, what has the government done to help us watch that rattlesnake? Actually, the action taken has been pretty helpful and one that every American user of borrowed money can take advantage of using. The federal Fair Credit Report Act recently passed by Congress gives each consumer one FICO report from each of the big three reporting bureaus. Experian, Equifax and Trans Union, which would gladly charge a person for this report if they could, must give up what knowledge they have about us once each year, but don't get in a hurry. There's actually a pretty cool way to go about this which will really help in watching that rattlesnake.
First, go to the Federal Trade Commission's website and get the address for requesting the free reports. Then, don't order all of them at once. Order one of them every four months and that way credit report monitoring can go on all year long. Now if the worry of identity theft is really suffocating, a person can actually sign up for monthly reports and that will cost some cash. But this service is a real step in the right direction in helping all Americans get the drop on some of those people who can be very under handed at getting our valuable personal information.
The white collar thieves that can quickly trash a person's reputation as well as their bank account are busy at work not only hacking into consumer's private and very personal information day and night, but they lurk around very public places looking for opportunities to steal the password codes, the checking account numbers and any other tasty morsels of data about anyone's life. Lip reading, binoculars and other aids give rise to newly opened accounts in victim's names that are never known about until months or even years later. And if the criminal has all the bills sent to another address which most often occurs, it will be a bill collector or a policeman showing up one day at the door and the victim is clueless about their inquiries. It may not be an exaggeration that soon credit report monitoring may be as important as monitoring blood pressure and glucose levels. Doesn't that snake look like its getting a little too close?
There are companies who will do credit report monitoring for a price. For about fifteen dollars a month, there are a number of businesses who will watch a customer's credit report monthly. Recent Federal Trade Commission information says that ten million Americans each year are victims of identity theft costing each of these persons five thousand dollars in expenses. The majority of these victims did not find out about their losses for a year. Yet two-thirds of all victims who found out in the first five months incurred no out of pocket expenses at all. One of the real benefits to using a credit monitoring service is the ID theft reimbursement coverage of at least $20,000 that comes with the service. Watch out, that snake has had enough and wants to bail out the window!
There is a difference between a credit report and a credit score. A report produces a score, but with the government mandated reports, there will not be a score included. With the credit report monitoring services, scores are available for perusal at any time. Customers are made aware of any change in the status of any loan account or any new one open without their approval by email or snail mail. Christians are made aware of God's guidance through His Spirit. Jesus said, "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth is come he will guide you into all truth for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak and he will show you things to come." (John 16:13)
In a sense, ignoring the advice to do regular Christian credit report monitoring is like the old dog that keeps running after cars and then does it a single time too many. About a thirtieth of the US population each year is a victim of identity theft. Two years ago it was nine million so the chances are growing that more people will be affected. Thankfully the government has given all consumers a good tool to help counter this threat against all of us. Together we can stop them.