Tag: identity

Business Stationery™ – Identity Group #online #business #opportunity


#business stationery

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At Identity Group, we pride ourselves on giving our customers excellent customer service that is based on years of industry knowledge.
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Our management team is one of the best in the business. Find out more about them and see why we have been so successfully over the years.
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Identity Group is clearly focused on one unwavering goal: Help our customers make a strong, positive and lasting impression. In other words, we help customers Stand Out !
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Identity Group as locations all over the country. See if there is a location near you.
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Business Stationery™

Customer Service
Telephone: 800-234-9954 ext. 4

Accounting
Telephone: 800-234-9954 ext. 2

Web Development
Telephone: 800-234-9954 ext. 3

Your business identity is our expertise.

Identity Group s print facility is an award-winning manufacturer of corporate print located in Cleveland, Ohio. Our stationery products include custom business cards, letterhead, envelopes, memo pads, mailing envelopes, catalog and booklet envelopes, mailing labels, invitations, and note cards. Marketing materials include post cards, sell sheets, door hangers, rack cards, bookmarks and more.

From our 40,000 sq. ft. facility, we operate one of the largest single-location manufacturing facilities focused on producing and servicing custom-printed corporate stationery. Our equipment and capabilities include 30 offset presses, thermographic (raised) printing, envelope jet presses, foil stamping, die-cutting, embossing and digital full color printing.

By continually investing in state-of-the-art equipment and technology we provide solutions that save time and money while ensuring the standards of your corporate brand

Lithography


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How to Prevent and Detect Business Identity Theft #detect #identity #theft


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How to Prevent and Detect Business Identity Theft

Published: April 23, 2012 Updated: January 9, 2013

Identity theft is a crime that impacts the lives of more than 10 million consumers every year-and the numbers are increasing. It’s hard to imagine that one out of every 20 consumers is at risk of being a victim this year alone.

The cost of identity theft among consumers costs businesses worldwide an estimated $221 billion a year, according to the Aberdeen Group.

However, consumers are no longer the only ones being targeted by these criminals. Now business owners have a new kind of threat to be concerned about that can cause a whirlwind of devastation to a victim’s business.

Business identity theft is the newest threat to small businesses all across America. In the case of a business, a criminal will seize a company’s identity and use it to acquire credit in the company’s name.

Once they successfully obtain these credit accounts, the criminals will go on a spending spree buying electronics, office equipment, gift cards, and any other items that can be purchased and sold for cash.

The damage inflicted can cripple a business, prevent it from acquiring any credit, and even threaten its very operation while a victim is trying to clean up and recover from it.

The following five strategies can help you prevent and detect business identify theft:

  1. Develop a protection plan – While most businesses focus on developing business plans to grow their company, little attention is paid to developing a protection plan. Design a step-by-step plan to protect your company’s identity at the same time putting in place an action plan in the event that you do become a victim.
  2. Protect company documents – Keep all your company documents and records in a safe and secure location. Dispose of any unnecessary information by using a micro cut shredder for the highest level of security. Also, never provide your company’s federal tax identification number, financials, or bank statements to anyone unless you have made the initial contact. Finally, consider using a prepaid business credit card for employees as opposed to a traditional business credit card. With these cards you can set limits, deactivate a card in real time, and even limit the merchants for which the card can be used. If a criminal happens to steal a company card from an employee, you can quickly take action.
  1. Protect company information online – One of the surefire ways to put your company at risk is by using sensitive information such as an employer identification number (EIN), account numbers, financial documents, or personal information via email or the web. If you must provide this information for a specific reason such as applying for credit, make sure the site is secure and its security certificate is up to date.
  2. Monitor business credit reports – One of the fastest ways to detect a possible identity theft is to monitor your company’s profiles with all three major business credit bureaus. You can accomplish this by subscribing to their monitoring services which give you access to your files 24/7. Take advantage of email alert notifications so you can be notified of any new activity occurring on your company credit files in real time.
  3. Avoid the “master” user – You should avoid creating any type of “master” user account and password where an employee or individual can gain access to all your company information.

Taking the following precautions can dramatically improve your chances of avoiding business identify theft. If you believe your business is a victim of identity theft, contact your local law enforcement agency, the business credit bureaus, as well as your company’s credit and bank providers to report the theft.

As a business owner, you should always remain vigilant in protecting your company’s identity. You’ve worked hard to build your business to where it is today and you should work equally as hard in protecting it.

About the author

Marco Carbajo is CEO of the Business Credit Insiders Circle (http://www.businesscreditblogger.com ), a step-by-step business credit building system providing credit recovery, lines of credit, business credit cards, trade credit, and funding sources.

About the Author:

Marco Carbajo is a business credit expert, author, speaker, and founder of the Business Credit Insiders Circle. He is a business credit blogger for Dun and Bradstreet Credibility Corp, the SBA.gov Community, About.com and All Business.com. His articles and blog; Business Credit Blogger.com, have been featured in ‘Fox Small Business’,’American Express Small Business’, ‘Business Week’, ‘The Washington Post’, ‘The New York Times’, ‘The San Francisco Tribune’,‘Alltop’, and ‘Entrepreneur Connect’.


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Uk online degrees #forty, #five, #45, #degrees, #graphic, #design, #derby, #print, #litho #4, #colour,

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So this is our shop, here we create design work that goes all over the world, it still amazes me! But I guess that is the power of the Internet!

In the shop we can also print your short run digitally printed poster’s, flyer’s, leaflet’s, pretty much anything, including up to 60 page booklets at A4 A5.

We can also print posters up to A1 and

photocopy up to A0.

Dean, Jay, Sarah, Andy Alan

OUR NEW PURPOSE

REBUILT STUDIO IN BELPER

We try our very best to make things as easy

as possible for you during the design process, and when it comes to print just tell us what you want and we will sort it all out for you, no fuss!

Don’t just take our word for it.

You make this process super simple and I really appreciate all your work and assistance. You are a vital member of the What’s On! team and I look forward to continuing to work with you.

Cory Cassell
Mission, Vancouver, Canada

WE MAKE THE PROCESS AS EASY AS POSSIBLE FOR YOU

WORKING WORLDWIDE FROM BELPER

We are based in a small market town in Derbyshire called Belper, however as you can see by the testimonial to the left to the left this does not limit us.

We work with businesses all over the world including Canada, America, China, and all over Europe, however most of our customers are here in the UK

We also repair Apple Mac Computers, we offer a buy install service too.
Call 01773 880 365 for more information.


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Ripoff Report #identity #protect #plus


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Identity Protection Plus SmartSaver Won’t Accept Cancellation, Threatens Credit Rating Internet

If your business is
willing to make a
commitment to
customer satisfaction
Click here now..

These folks are the most tenacious rip-off artists I have ever dealt with. For one, their operation appears to represent several scams under one roof. Second, they are incredibly uncooperative and will do anything to intimidate the consumer. Their methods are also illegal in my opinion, more later.

Between us, my wife and I got caught up in this without fully realizing what was going on. It was only after reviewing my cc charges that I questioned some rather strange alphanumeric names connected to charges of approximately 20.00 a month (in round numbers). My cc people had the proper contact info and I began researching what was going on.

I found that at least one, the ‘Shopper’ entity hadn’t delivered anything of value and that it was also very high profile on ‘rip-off’ reports. I determined we were fast-talked into bogus ‘services’ and wanted to cancel the shopper and the other as well.

At this time, we didn’t know they were one and the same company. which is important to remember.

I called the ‘shopper’ and it was relatively easy to cancel. still did not know they were also the ‘identity’ people.

I called the ‘identity’ folks at a different number and got the biggest runaround I have ever had! I couldn’t believe that I was actually not being allowed to cancel because “the person who authorizes that isn’t available”. I asked for customer service and was told that was where I was at. I asked for a supervisor and was told there were none available.

Finally, in complete frustration, I told the girl on the phone that she had better make note of my cancellation as she was leaving me no choice but to have my cc block payment to them and hung up. I did call the cc and they did block payment.

Now, months later comes a call on my wife’s cell about our PAST DUE account! I speak with the fellow on the line and remind him I had cancelled. He says they have the most efficient phone system around and they have NO RECORD of the call!

That’s when I learned they were also the ‘shopper’ because he acknowledged that I had called and cancelled that service, apparently to impress me with the ‘efficiency’ of his system. He was very rude and he also wouldn’t accept a cancellation..insisting I pay the past months and take the block away on my card. This was unbelievable!

I admit to getting very rude myself at this point and he said it would be turned over to outside collection and hung up. They have been intimidating us every day, several times a day, ever since. One call was within hours of the first and that person didn’t have a clue as to what had just been ‘discussed’.

Today, I received a ‘bill’ from them and for the FIRST TIME actually knew who I was dealing with and where they were from! That shows how ‘in the shadows’ they like to stay. It was that bill that finally caused this report.

I checked the number they had called my wife from and it came back as an ‘apparent spoof’; which is illegal and subject to FCC fines (10K for starters) and yes, I’m going to report them. The numbers they have used since have also been spoofs. The daily calls are voice messages giving a return number. We have called that number and, no matter what time of day it is, or what day it is, the ‘office is closed, call back during normal hours’.

FYI: A spoof is masking your caller id with a fake number or using a fake name in order to trick the person you’re calling into answering. A company that uses such a method is crooked (in my opinion).

Sorry about the length of this. Please stay away from these folks. they are FUNGIS.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 07/16/2012 04:41 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/identity-protection-plus/internet/identity-protection-plus-smartsaver-wont-accept-cancellation-threatens-credit-rating-int-912946. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

Search for additional reports

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Repair Your Reputation!

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Corporate Advocacy Program: The best way to manage and repair your business reputation. Hiding negative complaints is only a Band-Aid. Consumers want to see how businesses take care of business. All businesses will get complaints. How those businesses take care of those complaints is what separates good businesses from bad businesses.

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Filing an Identity Theft Police Report, how to file a police report for identity

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Filing an Identity Theft Police Report

How to file a police report for identity theft

How to file a police report for identity theft

Identity theft affects millions of people, results in the loss of billions of dollars, and is growing worse every year. Advances in technology have made it easier for criminals to access personal information, and in most cases, victims don t discover that they re victims until they see collection notices and arrest warrants in their names. For identity theft victims, one of the first steps in recovering from this crime is filing an identity theft report with the police department, either in the town or city where they live or in the location where the identity theft incident occurred.

If you re a victim, reporting identity theft to the police is something you should do immediately as soon as you ve reviewed your credit reports and while you re in the process of contacting a credit bureau, requesting a fraud alert on your credit files, and closing any accounts that the thief opened or compromised. In order for police to help you, you need to help the police by providing documentation like a current credit report. To begin an investigation, cops need information, and your current credit report can show them what new accounts are open, when someone opened them, and which current accounts the thief has used.

The importance of reporting identity theft to the police can t be overstated. A copy of an identity theft report lends credibility to your claim when you need it the most i.e., when you re contacting creditors and following up with correspondence proving that thieves ran up huge balances, not you. As you begin the process of recovering and rebuilding relationships with banks, credit card companies, merchants and other fraud victims, an identity theft report is your best weapon in the fight to regain your identity.

Some police departments are unable or unwilling to help victims file an identity theft report. If you encounter any obstacles like this, remain calm, and request a Miscellaneous Incident report instead. If that isn t an option, you may have no recourse but to contact the local county sheriff s department or, if necessary, the state police or the state attorney general s office.

How to file a police report for identity theft


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Fraud Protection, American Express, american express identity protection.#American #express #identity #protection


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American Express

American express identity protection

Email Fraud Alert Example of Fraudulent E-Mail

As an example of a phishing e-mail, please note some of our customers reported receiving the following e-mail, which is known to be a hoax.

Approximate date the e-mail hoax was sent: December 13, 2008 and October 20, 2008

Address appearing in Sender line: American Express and [email protected]

Some examples of the Subject line being used in this scam include:

American Express: security maintenance

American Express: new online security measures

American Express: data confirmation

American Express security upgrade

Content of the e-mail:

As part of the new security measures, all American Express Card holders are required to complete American Express Customer Form. A link takes Cardmembers to an online form that asks for their American Express Card number, as well as other sensitive security information.

If you have received and/or responded to an e-mail of this nature, purportedly from American Express, please see instructions below.

PRIVACY AND FRAUD PROTECTION

American Express Protects Your Privacy and Personal Information

American Express takes your privacy very seriously. Should our name be used in efforts to fraudulently obtain personal information, we will work aggressively to halt those operations. In addition, it is important to know that American Express never sends e-mails requesting customers to reply in the body of an e-mail with personal information, such as password, social security number, account numbers, mother’s maiden name, etc.

Phishing (pronounced fishing ) refers to fraudulent communications designed to deceive consumers into divulging personal, financial, or account information, including account user name and password, credit card information, and social security number. E-mail is most commonly used for phishing due to its low cost, greater anonymity for the sender, the ability to reach a large target group instantly, and the potential to solicit an immediate response. However, fraudsters have also used online pop-up windows, direct mail and phone calls.

Phishing e-mails often appear to come from legitimate financial institutions, insurance companies or retailers. Techniques such as a false from address, the use of seemingly authentic logos from financial institutions, or Web links and graphics may be used to mislead consumers into believing that they are dealing with a legitimate request for personal information. These fraudulent e-mails often create a false sense of urgency intended to provoke the recipient to take immediate action; for example, phishing e-mails frequently instruct recipients to validate or update account information or face cancellation.

If you receive an e-mail that you believe could be fraudulent, please contact American Express and your issuing back as follows:

  • American Express: Send an email to [email protected] Please note that any submissions to this email address will be reviewed, but we are unable to provide individual follow-up to each message with our findings.
  • Issuing Bank: Please contact the number on the back of your Card to report any incidents. If you do not have your Card available, you can also find phone numbers and email addresses for your issuing bank by clicking on Contact Us on the American Express website for your country.

If you have already responded to an e-mail with your American Express account information and you believe it to be fraudulent, please contact Customer Service immediately by calling the number on the back of your Card. Also, make sure that you immediately change any passwords and continue to monitor your account activities.

TIPS TO PREVENT FRAUD

Keep all your financial details safe and secure. Here s what you can do to help minimize the risk of fraud.

Never let anyone else use your debit, credit or charge cards

Immediately sign the back of new cards

Always destroy old, expired cards by cutting them up

Let us know immediately if you’ve lost your Card, or think it may be stolen. We will then be able to cancel the Card and prevent fraudulent transactions.

Never keep your PIN in your wallet, purse or diary, or record it in a way that others could understand

Do not tell anyone else your PIN, password or security information

Always try to cover your hand when entering your PIN at a terminal or ATM to prevent others seeing your number

When shopping online, only use secure web pages. A web page is secure if there is a locked padlock in the lower right-hand corner of your browser or if the address starts with ‘https’, where the ‘s’ stands for secure.

Review your statements regularly

Keep copies of your receipts and compare them to your statement

Call your card issuer as soon as possible if an unrecognized charge or charges appear on one of your statements

When no longer required, make sure you destroy or securely dispose any unwanted statements

Checking your statements is easy to do with online services – you can check your transactions daily. Or register for card alerts to monitor your account activity, with weekly account balance updates by email or text message

Protect yourself from identity theft

Safeguard all your personal information and documents, especially your date of birth – this information can be used to steal your identity

Tear up or shred any sensitive information from financial organizations or utility companies when no longer needed

Review your credit reference report regularly; this may be the earliest way to identify fraudulent activity when you are the victim identity theft

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Please see the Privacy Policy section of the American Express website for your specific country.

Copyright 2008 American Express Company.

All Rights Reserved

American express identity protection American express identity protection


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7 Ways To Protect Yourself From ID Theft #protect #yourself #against #identity #theft


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7 ways to protect yourself from ID theft

Identity theft is everywhere. Turn on your TV, and you’ll see “special reports” on how to prevent it. Turn on the radio, and hear ads for services pledging to protect you from it. Search for it on Google, and you get 140 million results. In fact, according to a 2013 report by Javelin Research, there is one incident of identity fraud every three seconds.

The Javelin report also shows that the number of identity fraud incidents increased by 1 million consumers in the past year and the dollar amount stolen increased to $21 billion.

Fortunately, there are some easy ways to lower your risk of becoming another ID theft victim.

How to protect yourself against ID theft

  1. Don’t over-share on social networking websites
  2. Maintain anti-virus and anti-malware software
  3. Handle financial documents with care
  4. Create strong passwords
  5. Be careful with unsecured Wi-Fi
  6. Don’t be reeled in by phishing scams
  7. Monitor credit and bank accounts closely

1. Don’t over-share on social networking websites

Thanks to social networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, people are now putting unprecedented levels of personal information online, and many aren’t doing enough to keep it away from would-be criminals. A 2011 Javelin report found longtime social networking users were almost twice as likely as those newer to social networking to become victims of ID theft.

“The Internet has turned into this place where the less-educated consumer will willingly give up information in places where they just shouldn’t,” says Sean Brady, director in the identity management protection group for RSA, an information security firm based in Bedford, Mass.

The good news is you can protect yourself, Brady says. He recommends setting your privacy settings at the highest level and not sharing facts like your exact birth date, including the year, or information that could be used to answer your security questions such as your mother’s maiden name.

Ultimately, Brady says social media users will have to decide how much information they’re willing to disclose and weigh it against the benefits of social networking.

2. Maintain anti-virus and anti-malware software

Increasingly, identity thieves are using viruses and harmful programs known as malware to steal Americans’ financial information, says Michael McKeown, supervisory special agent, FBI Cyber Division.

These programs can enter your personal computer in several different ways, the most common being email with links or attachments that when clicked on, install malware on your machine. From there, they can record keystrokes to mine passwords, hijack online banking sessions and probe your PC for financial information.

Beside keeping anti-virus and anti-malware software up to date, another way to prevent yourself from being hurt by malware is to keep the financial information on your PC limited, Brady says. He advises consumers to decline every time you’re asked to save your password when you’re logging on to a financial site.

“Malware these days, that’s one of the first areas that it goes to, the location where all that’s kept,” Brady says.

3. Handle financial documents with care

Physical documents aren’t as much of a threat as they once were, simply because stealing them from a mailbox or the trash can be dangerous work for thieves, Brady says. Still, the key to minimizing the risk is storing needed documents carefully and destroying the ones you don’t need.

“A shredder is your friend,” says Steven Toporoff, attorney with the Federal Trade Commission’s Division of Privacy and Identity Protection.

Certain documents need to be retained for tax and other purposes. “Short of that, you should be shredding documents regularly that you no longer need, especially those that have any kind of account number or identifying information,” Toporoff says.

Also, shred any kind of financial solicitations you get in the mail, especially those credit card offers containing blank checks.

4. Create strong passwords

In a world where online banking is increasingly ubiquitous and access to large chunks of your net worth is just a username and password away, having a strong password is important.

That’s because once thieves have zeroed in on your email address or account username, they’ll often try to guess your password, either manually or using a computer program to try thousands of passwords until they find the correct one.

To keep from becoming a victim of ID theft, stay away from obvious passwords. “‘12345’ is just not a good password,” Brady says. “Everybody has passwords that he can remember — mnemonics or very personal things that are better passwords that aren’t publicly known.”

Incorporate spaces, special characters, and lowercase and uppercase letters. “Whatever your password is, (it) should not be a word that’s found in the dictionary,” he says.

McKeown says using multiple passwords also can limit the damage a thief can do, especially for your online banking accounts.

5. Be careful with unsecured Wi-Fi

It may be convenient to do online banking at a cafe or to keep your home Wi-Fi network unsecured to avoid typing a password, but criminals have become increasingly adept at intercepting unsecured Wi-Fi communications, Toporoff says.

“You don’t want to do banking or to look up your financial accounts in a Wi-Fi situation where it’s not secure,” he says. “Others who are sitting there with you on the same network conceivably can get access to your information.”

To protect yourself, Toporoff recommends putting a password on your home Wi-Fi network and waiting until you get home or to another secured network to make financial transactions.

6. Don’t be reeled in by phishing scams

Phishing, or the practice of sending out fraudulent emails soliciting financial information or getting users to click on virus-laden links or attachments, is a growing identity theft threat, RSA’s Brady says.

That’s because phishing emails have grown increasingly convincing, thanks to growing information available to thieves about you to make the emails more persuasive. Brady says consumers are seeing emails, referring to them by name and containing their address, friends and family names or their job stolen from social networking sites and data breaches, known as “spear phishing.”

Brady cites one example of spear phishing as the 2011 data breach at Dallas-based marketing firm Epsilon, where thieves accessed millions of Americans’ email addresses and names.

“That gave the ability. to send personalized emails that have a greater chance of success,” he says.

To avoid becoming a victim, read emails carefully before clicking on links or attachments, especially if an email comes from out of the blue or asks for personal or financial information, Toporoff says.

Instead of clicking on such links, Toporoff recommends contacting the company directly, using contact information you know to be accurate.

7. Monitor credit and bank accounts closely

Checking your credit card and debit card statements online on a daily basis is a good way to limit the damage that fraudsters can do to your accounts, McKeown says.

That’s especially true now. You may remember those ID theft commercials with a male actor talking in a dubbed female voice about the fraudulent purchase of a pricey $1,500 bustier, but many thieves are actually smarter than that these days, McKeown says. Instead of making a big, obvious purchase likely to trigger a fraud alert, thieves will charge small amounts under $20, hoping to remain undetected and keep the card number active as long as possible.

To be sure, ID thieves don’t limit themselves to existing accounts. Javelin’s 2011 study found that although it’s less common, when thieves are able to establish new accounts in a victim’s name, the average loss per incident is a whopping $7,350 compared to just $4,197 for fraud committed using existing accounts. The report says new-account fraud is harder to detect.

To avoid being a victim of new-account fraud, get regular, free credit reports from myBankrate. Using this strategy will help you identify any new, unauthorized accounts that have been opened in your name.

Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

Bankrate’s community sharing policy

Bankrate wants to hear from you and encourages thoughtful and constructive comments. We ask that you stay focused on the story topic, respect other people’s opinions, and avoid profanity, offensive statements, illegal contents and advertisement posts. Comments are not reviewed before they are posted. Bankrate reserves the right (but is not obligated) to edit or delete your comments. Please avoid posting private or confidential information, and also keep in mind that anything you post may be disclosed, published, transmitted or reused. We do not permit the inclusion of hyperlinks in comments and may remove any comment that includes a hyperlink.

By submitting a post, you agree to be bound by Bankrate’s terms of use. Please refer to Bankrate’s privacy policy for more information regarding Bankrate’s privacy practices.


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Identity Theft Protection, Fraud Prevention – Identity Theft Resource #identity #theft #protection, #identity #fraud

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Copyright 2017 IdentityHawk

The articles and information available are for educational and reference purposes only. They do not constitute, and should not be construed as, legal or financial advice. Any legal or financial principles discussed here are for general information purposes only and may differ substantially in individual situations and/or in different states or countries. For specific legal or financial advice, please consult a licensed attorney or a financial professional. IdentityHawk does not control or guarantee the accuracy of any information provided through external links from the articles on this website to any other website, nor does the IdentityHawk privacy policy apply to any personal information that may be collected via the external links.

*Identity theft insurance underwritten by subsidiaries or affiliates of Chartis Inc. The description herein is a summary and intended for informational purposes only and does not include all terms, conditions and exclusions of the policies described. Please refer to the actual policies for terms, conditions, and exclusions of coverage. Coverage may not be available in all jurisdictions. View the summary of your benefits. If you cancel your membership in the first 30 days, the insurance coverage will be cancelled as of your original membership start date.

Coverage for residents of New York is limited to a $25,000 maximum. New York residents: view the summary of your benefits .

IdentityHawk provides you with the tools you need to access and monitor your financial/credit information through the program’s credit reporting and monitoring benefits. IdentityHawk provides only limited credit monitoring services which are accessible to its members via the identityhawk.com website. IdentityHawk is not accepting new customers. Credit information provided by TransUnion Interactive, Inc.

Four Things You Need to Know About Identity Theft

Identity theft continues to plague U.S. citizens across all income levels, genders, races, ages, and occupations. While the continued rise in incidents has led to greater consumer interest in identity theft prevention and protection measures, identity thieves still manage to find new ways to uncover personal information and use it to their advantage and their victims detriment.

The most recent statistics from Javelin Strategy Research indicate that more than 11 million American consumers were victimized by identity fraud in 2009, an increase of more than one million people from 2008.* Essentially, one out of every 27 people in this country in 2009 had their personal information used by others to engage in fraudulent transactions or to receive services illegally and that rate shows no signs of abating.

Here are four things you need to know about identity theft and identity fraud:

  1. Identity theft is a stepping-stone to identity fraud. Identity theft occurs when someone gains unauthorized access to someone else s personal information. Here are just a few ways in which someone s personal data can wind up in the hands of an identity thief:
    • A thief steals a victim s wallet or purse.
    • A thief copies a consumer s credit card while ringing up a transaction.
    • A thief hacks into a corporate or institutional database and steals information about multiple people or accounts.
    • A victim is duped into entering information into a fake website or responding to a phishing e-mail.
    • A laptop computer containing personally identifying information is left unprotected in a public area.

Identity fraud occurs when that stolen information is used to benefit the thief in some way. The thief may:

  • Make unauthorized charges to the victim s credit card account;
  • Drain funds from the victim s bank account;
  • Use the victim s Social Security number to open new accounts in the victim s name;
  • Use the victim s information to receive healthcare or other services in the victim s name; or
  • Take advantage of the victim s information in a variety of other ways.

Once a thief has a victim s information, the victim can face a long and difficult struggle, not only to catch the thief but also to restore the victim s identity to its pre-theft status. That s why it s so important to implement identity theft prevention and protection measures before a theft occurs.

Identity theft can victimize anyone. Legend has it that Willie Sutton, a famous bank robber in the first half of the 20th century, was once asked why he robbed banks. Because that s where the money is, he was reported to reply.

Identity thieves in the 21st century often follow the same logic. In addition to targeting gullible marks through phishing e-mails and pharming websites, identity thieves go after the big fish celebrities and other public figures who presumably have money to burn, including (but not limited to) Oprah Winfrey, Martha Stewart, Warren Buffet, Michael Bloomberg and others.

Clearly, the ability to amass a lot of money and/or attention offers no protection against identity theft.

  • Most identity theft crimes are committed by someone the victim knows. It s difficult to prevent identity theft when a parent can access a child s (or spouse s) Social Security number and use it to create fake accounts.
  • Early detection of identity theft leads to better outcomes. The sooner you can detect and respond to the warning signs of identity theft, the more likely you are to protect your assets and your name. While the zero-liability fraud protections instituted by most credit card issuers have reduced the number of people paying out-of-pocket for identity fraud, the average out-of-pocket cost for those who do pay something is $373, and it takes the average victim 21 hours to resolve the identity theft issue.*
  • The Federal Trade Commission urges consumers to monitor their financial accounts. because the best identity theft protection measure is early detection.

    However, credit monitoring can t catch all of the warning signs of identity theft. For even stronger identity theft/fraud prevention and protection, consumers should strongly consider an identity theft protection program that tracks a much wider range of their personal data, including names, addresses, Social Security numbers, phone numbers, affiliations, and more.

    * 2010 Identity Fraud Survey Report: Consumer Version, Javelin Strategy Research, February 2010


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    Child Identity Theft at Experian #child #identity #theft #protection


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    Perspectives Newsletter

    Protect Your Child’s Identity

    Child Identity Theft Creates Costly and Time Consuming Problems for Both Families and Businesses

    Good credit is one of a person s most valuable assets. And while establishing a history of financial responsibility often begins in early adulthood, an increasing number of school age children are showing up on credit reports even before they have their first bank account. Once considered a crime targeting adults only, with up to 500,000 children affected each year, identity theft has become an equally monumental problem for children, their parents, and countless businesses.

    Child identity thieves generally target dormant social security numbers. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) detecting fraud against minors can be especially challenging because credit issuers do not have the ability to verify the true owner of a social security number.

    The hidden nature of the crime means that victims and their parents often don t discover the damage that s been done for many years. The crime is typically detected when a child first applies for a job, car loan or college financial aid.

    Who steals the identities of minors?

    Dormant social security numbers are sometimes used to fraudulently rebuild an already tarnished credit record. Through a process called piggy-backing, people buy dormant social security numbers and then link to dormant files often belonging to minors. Individuals avoiding the immigration process may also tap into dormant social security numbers, often by randomly selecting numbers, or purchasing them on the black market.

    Another source of child identity theft may be friends and family members of the victim who want to evade their bad credit ratings.

    How can families and businesses defend themselves?

    Recognizing the early warning signs of child identity theft can save families and businesses a substantial amount of money, time, and frustration. Credit card and bank offers in a child s name are frequently indicators of child identity theft that should be immediately investigated.

    If there are no signs of problems, the ITRC recommends that parents write a letter to the credit reporting agencies requesting information on the child s name and social security number, and on the child s social security number alone on the child s 16 th birthday.

    With the economy continuing its especially volatile state, solid credit has become even more crucial among lenders. Although many lending decisions are made simply on a defined credit score threshold, the increase in incidents of piggy-backing on dormant accounts means that a growing number of these scores will be based on fraudulent information. Businesses may soon have an extra layer of protection through a database proposed by the ITRC that enables businesses to verify if a social security number that has been submitted belongs to a minor.

    Experian Data Breach Resolution offers a proactive solution that offers families and businesses even more protection against child identity theft. Family Secure SM offers peace of mind through constant credit monitoring of your entire family and for a limited time you can get 40% off by using the code FAMILY40 when you sign up.


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