How to Freeze a Credit Report to Protect Yourself Against Identity Theft

If your Social Security number gets hacked in any data breaches, including recently hacked T-Mobile, then there’s a way to prevent hackers from misusing your identity (i.e. identity theft).

The solution here is that you can institute a security freeze at each of the three credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, or Transunion. Once frozen, nobody will be allowed to access your credit report, which will prevent any identity thieves from opening new accounts in your name.


What is a Charge Off on Your Credit Report?

A charge-off is a debt that is deemed uncollectible by the original creditor and is subsequently written off. Charge-offs are classified as bad debts on the creditor’s income statement and are removed from the balance sheet. When a creditor charges-off your account, it’s declaring your debt as a loss for the company. The creditor then usually sells or assigns the bad debt to a collection agency.


Credit Repair: Dealing With Debt Collectors

Dealing with debt collectors is an art – just as is the way that they attempt to deal with you. Your credit rating is important, and they know that. Professional debt collectors spend every day using techniques that are proven to get results for them. They will hone in on your weaknesses if you show any. It is your credit rating at stake any time that you are dealing with a debt collector. So, let’s learn how to handle these aggressive money mongers:

The first issue at hand is for you to understand your rights.


7 Tips to Fix Mistakes in Your Credit Report

It’s not easy and it’s not quick, but at least we have tips you need to fix your credit report. Is your credit report telling lies about you? Credit report errors happen all the time, especially if you have a common name. Dispute them pronto, so you don’t end up paying more than you should for your mortgage and home owners insurance, or have trouble getting credit.

Just remember: Removing errors is a DIY project. So don’t get baited by credit repair servicers (“Pay us before we do any work on your behalf;” “Don’t contact the credit reporting companies directly” ) — these pitches are usually scams. Instead, try these seven tips for fixing credit report mistakes.


9 myths on how to build better credit

Like child-rearing and curing ailments, credit building is chock-full of old wives’ tales that don’t pan out. Smart financial moves such as closing accounts or paying off loans early may not be the credit boosters you think they are.

Sadly, there are no real quick fixes despite what some commercials or online credit repair ads might proclaim….


White House Gets It Wrong: Credit Monitoring Most Effective Tool for Detecting ID Theft, Not Credit Scores

The White House issued a press release commending the banks and credit unions that are giving away free FICO and VantageScore credit scores to their customers. Oddly enough, though, the release suggests that “one of the best early indicators of identity theft” are these free credit scores. And while getting access to your credit scores is great, they’re terrible and ineffective at alerting consumers that they may have been a victim of identity theft.

To suggest that getting monthly access to your credit scores will “help you spot identity theft” underscores a lack of understanding about credit scores….