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Last Post 12/16/2008 10:12 AM by  Tom Toll
Credit Protection
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Tom Toll
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12/16/2008 10:12 AM
    I found this information quite informative and useful. I suggest you make a printed copy of it and then copy and paste it to a word document and save it as Credit Protection. That way you will always have this useful information. With the economy the way it is, credit fraud will be on the rise, so protect yourself accordingly.
    Not a Joke!
    If you dislike attorneys... You will love them for these tips.

    Read this and make a copy for your files in case you need to refer to it someday. May be we should all take some of his advice!

    A corporate attorney sent the following out to the employees in his company.

    1. Do not sign the back of your credit cards. Instead, put 'PHOTO ID REQUIRED.'

    2. When you are writing checks to pay on your credit card accounts, DO NOT put the complete account number on the 'For' line. Instead, just put the la st four numbers. The credit card company knows the rest of the number, and anyone who might be handling your check as it passes
    Through all the check processing channels won't have access to it..

    3. Put your work phone # on your checks instead of your home phone. If you have a PO Box use that instead of your home address. If you do not have a PO Box, use your work address.
    Never have your SS# printed on your checks. (DUH!) You can add it if it is necessary. But if you have It printed, anyone can get it.

    4. Place the contents of your wallet on a photocopy machine.
    Do both sides of each license, credit card, etc. You will know what you had in your wallet and all of the account numbers and phone numbers to call and cancel. Keep th e photocopy in a safe place.

    I also carry a photocopy of my passport when I travel either here or abroad.
    We've all heard horror stories about fraud that's committed on us in stealing a Name, address, Social Security number R, credit cards.

    Unfortunately, I, an attorney, have firsthand knowledge because my wallet was stolen last month. Within a week, the thieve(S) ordered an expensive monthly cell phone package, applied for a VISA credit card, had a credit line approved to buy a Gateway computer, received a PIN number from DMV to change my driving record information online, and more.

    But here's some critical information to limit the damage in case this happens to you or someone you know:

    5. We have been told we should ca n cel our credit cards immediately. But the key is having the toll free numbers and your card numbers handy so you know whom to call. Keep those where you can find them.

    6. File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where your credit cards, etc .., were stolen.
    This proves to credit providers you were diligent, and this is a first step
    Toward an investigation (if there ever is one).

    But here's what is perhaps most important of all: (I never even thought to do this.)

    7. Call the 3 national credit reporting organizations immediately to place a fraud alert on your name and also call the Social Security fraud line number. I had never heard of doing that until advised by a bank that called to tell me an application for cr edit was made over the Internet in my name.

    The alert means any company that checks your credit knows your information was stolen, and they have to contact you by phone to authorize new credit.

    By the time I was advised to do this, almost two weeks after the theft, all the damage had been done. There are records of all the credit checks initiated by the thieves' purchases, none of which I knew about before placing the alert. Since then, no additional damage has been done, and the thieves threw my wallet away this weekend (someone turned it in). It seems to have stopped them dead in their tracks.

    Now, here are the numbers you always need to contact about your wallet, if it has been stolen:

    1.) Equifax: 1-800-525-6285

    2.) Experian (formerly TRW): 1-888-397-3742

    3.) Trans Union : 1-800-680 7289

    4.) Social Security Administration (fraud line): 1-800-269-0271
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
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