Saturday, April 30, 2011

That's Who You Say You Are, But ....

Identity theft is a serious crime that has gone beyond getting out of proportion. It once was a person needed to worry that a credit card, or a credit card bill, would be intercepted before it got to either you or the recipient of a payment. If it was intercepted after making the payment they would not only get the card number but your checking account number as well. People with outside mailboxes know exactly what I mean. Some, not all, credit card companies have taken some steps to making your bills safer by not putting the full account number anywhere on the bill. That shows respect for the cardholder because they wish to protect you from the not so good element out there. The outdoor mailbox is one of the reasons I no longer write checks anymore. Florida is also known for not having many public postal mailboxes available either. I came from Boston and almost every street corner had a mailbox, big and blue and made of steel! Thank goodness for electronic payments. Identity theft protection has been an ever growing industry because there's a great need for it. Credit reporting agencies aren't the easiest to set things straight for consumers so heading off problems before the become debt mountains is important, to say the very least.

A while back there was a flashy commercial where the founder of this credit/identity protection company put his social security number on a tractor trailer and had it driven through a metropolitan city, telling the viewers that he had no worries because his company would protect him and if something unforeseen did happen they had a million dollar policy to back them up. I read somewhere that someone successfully stole his identity and those commercials are no longer shown. Please tell me if I'm wrong but I don't think I am. There are several successful companies that make a valiant effort to secure your persona, so to speak, and probably the better of the bunch is a company called IdentityHawk. They offer a comprehensive set of tools to protect your identity, give you a status of the health of your identity, information monitoring, and immediate alerts when suspicious activity threatens your standing as a unique individual in order to keep your identity unique to you alone! I've included a couple of links to this company for you to take a look at and see what you think. I started thinking on it a lot after I went to my lawyer about my will and he told me half of his cases were identity theft issues. When lawyers smile when they tell you something like that it's time to protect before you need to be healed.

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