Identity theft is fairly common, although not widely publicized. In 2005 the Better Business Bureau reported over 9 million victims a year for two years running. One's identity can be stolen by something as simple as a security breach on hospital data. It can be quite baffling to determine the exact event that led to the crime. Most often people discover the crime when it's too late.
A credit report monitoring service affords consumers the opportunity to quickly detect any evidence of identity theft. Moreover, it's easier to circumvent ID theft by monitoring your report, because you will immediately see where your personal information has been violated. For example, whether the thief used your personal information to obtain a job, access your checking account or open a store account.
Most often the goal of an ID thief is to gain access to a consumer's bank account information. Fraudulent emailing is form of online "phishing" in an attempt to gain credit card and other sensitive information from a consumer. Unfortunately many people become victims to this type of identity crime without being aware of it.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FRCA) affords consumers the right to get free copies of their reports from the three major credit bureaus. A consumer also has the right to request that the reporting agencies place "fraud alerts" on their credit file. Furthermore a consumer has the right to view any documents resulting in fraudulent accounts opened in their name.
Regular credit report monitoring allows a consumer early detection of ID theft which helps to prevent the thief from "cashing in" on their crime. For a monthly fee of $ 14.95 a consumer will get email alerts whenever any change is made to their credit report status. A 3 bureau credit report makes it easier for a consumer to check their details and report any fraudulent activity.