Identity theft continues to be a widespread problem and, if it happens to you, can make a mess of your credit. But there are steps you can take to protect yourself. If you haven’t been a victim of identity theft, this post will show you how to minimize your risk of being victimized.
If you have become the victim of identity theft, follow the step-by-step guide to help get your credit
cleaned up and prevent recurring problems in the future. Most of this you can do yourself. It’s not necessary to pay for an expensive monitoring service to protect yourself from identity theft. Many so-called identity theft protection services have so many holes and exceptions in their guarantees that they don’t really offer you the protection you think you are getting.
We tested a number of these 'services' and found that the only one to meet and exceed our expectations was Total Protection from Identity Guard.
The Increasing Demand For Identity Theft Monitoring
The sad truth is that the Internet and its vast collections of easily accessible personal data make identity theft a simple and tantalizing endeavor for the criminally inclined. Contributing to the problem are businesses without stringent privacy policies and corporate and government mistakes in handling sensitive customer information.
Incidents of stolen computers and storage devices loaded with personal information, compromised sensitive databases, information-rich files being left unsecured in garbage bins, and unshredded credit slips are common—and even unsavvy thieves know it.
Unfortunately, most state and local police agencies are ill-equipped to handle these sophisticated crimes, which often cross state borders and occur in cyberspace using online e-learning groups. From a police perspective, identity theft is a silent crime. It just doesn’t merit the priority of crimes like murder, robbery, and other violent crimes that are more easily investigated and prosecuted. District attorneys are in a similar bind.
The good news is that the times are changing. Identity theft is now a federal crime. Many states also make it a crime. Federal and state law enforcement agencies are taking the problem more seriously, especially now that the FBI and other agencies have recognized the connection between identity theft and other major crimes, including terrorism.
For most victims, identity theft, if handled correctly, is not a major problem. More than half of all victims of
identity theft incur no costs. About a quarter resolve the matter within one day of discovering the identity theft. But, if you are victimized, you will doubtless need to spend at least several hours taking steps to stop
the theft and prevent your identity from being used further.
For more id theft prevention tips, visit www.creditmonitoringservice.org.