Thursday, December 18, 2008

ID Theft

Thousands of innocent people become victims of ID theft each year. Sadly, according to a recent Federal Trade Commission survey, relatives and friends make up over half of all known identity thieves. Experts recommend placing sensitive account numbers and passwords in a secure, locked location. Be sure to check monthly statements for any unauthorized activity, such as large purchases of dog bones or squeaky toys. Any such unauthorized purchases should be disputed immediately with your credit card provider. It is not necessary to explain in detail how your dog gained access to your credit card or learned to type. Simply dispute the charges. In addition, you may wish to order copies of your credit reports annually. If identity theft has occurred, request a "90 day alert" be placed on your file. Such alert may simply state "Alert: Identity may have been stolen by dog. Do not open new account or approve charges without proper identification. Dog tags will not be accepted as proper identification". Should you require additional assistance, please contact the Federal Trade Commission or your state's attorney general's office.

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