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Everyone should place a Fraud Alert

In the wake of the Equifax Debacle everyone's identity is at risk. Therefore it makes sense to create a fraud alert. A fraud alert is a simple and free process. You contact one of the three credit reporting agencies and tell them you want one. They alert the other two.

A fraud alert requires a lender to try and verify that the person asking for a credit card in your name or applying for a loan in your name is in fact you. They do this by calling the number you have given the Credit reporting agency. The process takes just a few minutes and is painless.

Here's what I did:

  • Clicked on the TransUnion Fraud alert link. I had heard that TransUnion handled the process best. Not sure if that is true, but they were very easy to use.
  • Logged into my TransUnion account. If you don't have one, then create an account with a username, password, and security question. Passwords are limited to 15 characters, but allow symbols. I had an account because I had received a credit report from them at some time in the past.
  • Checked the box to place the alert
  • Entered my phone number. This will be given to a creditor so they can verify my identity.
  • Clicked OK.

That's it. Now, if someone tries to rent an apartment, get a credit card or take out a loan in my name, I will be called.

These alerts only last for a few months. A minimum of 90 days. So I will need to renew mine in a few months. I added a tickler in my calendar. It appears that I'll have to repeat this process every few months.


Date: October 2017

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