Credit Fraud and How to Protect Yourself

Unfortunately, credit fraud is an increasingly serious problem, having grown almost threefold in frequency in the last five years. Under the most common scam, called "identity theft", the criminal opens a credit card or other account with another person's name and social security number (or other uniquely identifying information). The criminal then purchases goods and services and you get stuck with the bill. By law, consumers only have to pay $50 of the loss if they report the fraudulent activity promptly, but it's still a hassle to get the situation resolved, and in any case everyone suffers since the credit card companies and lenders pass the costs on to the consumer in the form of higher prices and higher interest rates.

Here are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of credit fraud (in addition to checking your credit report periodically):

If you have been a victim of credit fraud, contact the or emailing them at Federal Trade Commission's complaint center at (202) FTC-HELP. Or write to: Consumer Response Center, Federal Trade Commission, CRC-240, 600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20580.
By InvestorGuide Staff

Copyrighted 2020. Content published with author's permission.

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