After working for years to build good credit, many people begin to worry about identity thieves who steal personal information in order to apply for loans and credit cards they will never pay back. Once your identity is stolen and your personal information is used to open these accounts, it can be an extremely difficult process to have the false accounts closed and your credit history repaired. This is where a credit monitoring service comes in. A credit monitoring service will work to protect your identity from being stolen by continually monitoring your credit for any suspicious activity, and in some cases, actively searching for your personal information on black markets to prevent illegal actions before they occur. Continue reading to learn more about how credit monitoring services work and if they are the right choice for you. Already know you would benefit from a credit monitoring service?
What does a credit monitoring service do?
There is a number of credit monitoring services available to you today, each with their own set of security products designed to alert you when suspicious activity occurs and prevent identity theft before it happens. However, most companies perform the same core set of functions:
Monitoring of all personal credit activity
Active search for personal identity information on the internet
Credit Reports provided to you at no additional charge
There are several companies that offer additional services, including insurance in case of identity theft, but additional services also come with additional costs. The average cost for a credit monitoring service is around $15 a month with some as low as $10 and some higher than $30. However, price does not always guarantee quality and there are more than a few unethical credit monitoring companies out there so be sure to research and compare services before making a final decision.
Do you need Credit Monitoring
While a credit monitoring service can be an excellent addition to your financial security plan, it may not necessarily be the first or most important aspect depending on your personal credit and current financial position. If you have a developed a good credit history over several years and have a significant amount of financial assets that you would like to protect, a credit monitoring services might be an excellent addition to your financial security plan. If you have yet to establish a credit history and are not too concerned with protecting your current assets, you might not receive the full benefit of a credit monitoring service for the cost. If you do decide to employ a credit monitoring service to help you stay on top of your credit and provide an additional layer of protection against identity thieves, remember to shop around for the set of services that will benefit you most and ensure you are working with a reputable company.
1) https://www.usa.gov/identity-theft 2) https://www.forbes.com/sites/robertharrow/2017/09/25/what-for-pay-credit-monitoring-services-actually-offer/#4e2125bc79bc 3) https://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/after-the-equifax-breach-watch-out-for-phishing-scams/