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Monday Mailbag 10/1/2018

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Question:
I received an alert stating that an account was created using my social security number. When I spoke to a rep @ Cap One, he told me to just keep an eye on my credit to make sure that nobody tries to apply for new things using my information. Should I be doing more?

Answer:
One thing that you could do to protect your identity and add another layer of security is initiating a fraud alert on your credit report. A Fraud Alert is a free service provided by the 3 credit reporting agencies which will warn you if anyone tries to access your credit file or open any accounts in your name.

What happens is, when you initiate the Fraud Alert, you input a phone number, then, if anyone tries applying for anything in your name, the creditor will call that phone number to confirm that it is really you who is applying for the loan.

If it’s really you who’s applying for the loan then you tell them that yes, you are applying and they will continue forward with the loan but, if it’s not, you tell them that you were not the person who applied and the creditor will not be given access to your credit reports. No inquiries will be added to your credit reports, no accounts will be opened in your name, the identity thief will be stopped dead in his tracks.

You can initiate a Fraud Alert via the following link: https://www.alerts.equifax.com

Once the alert is initiated with Equifax they will notify Experian and TransUnion themselves.

Question:
Do you know of any companies to pay a fee to instantly improve credit score overnight? I’ve heard of someone paying $600-$800 bucks for something like that….you know of anyone? I still want to use your services to remove the negative info but, I need to get my scores up 100 points right now.

Answer:
Unfortunately, there’s no such thing as a company that can improve your credit overnight, no matter how much you pay them. The FCRA, FDCPA, and FCBA laws allow the credit bureaus and furnishers 30-45 days to complete a dispute, 15 days to complete a method of verification request, 30 days for debt validation, etc…. There is absolutely no way to circumvent these laws, that is why you will never see a legitimate credit repair company advertising anything like that. Permanent positive results that increase your credit scores take a substantial amount of time and work. If you hear of a credit repair company advertising overnight results or something too good to be true… RUN.

Having said that, there are companies out there that sell trade-lines. Basically, they would add you as an authorized user to an old established credit card, something like a 15-year-old credit card with a perfect payment history, a high credit limit ($20,000+), and a very low credit utilization. Getting an account like that on your credit report can have a tremendous impact on your credit scores but, it typically takes 30-60 days to get the creditor to report the account on your credit file and the increase is temporary since the account will eventually be removed from your reports.

There are companies out there that do this but, we don’t really know of any reputable ones and have hears stories from clients where they have paid hundreds of dollars for a trade-line and it either never reported to their credit reports or reported and disappeared after a few weeks.

If you’re interested in permanently improving your credit scores, it will take time. You will need to pay your bills on time, pay down your credit cards or establish your credit, you will need to limit your inquiries and keep a good mix of credit, and you will need to work on removing your past derogatory information by leveraging all of the consumer protection laws including the aforementioned FCRA, FDCPA, and FCBA to name a few. Or you can hire a legitimate credit repair service to conduct the work on your behalf. And you can’t realistically expect to remove 7-10 years of bad credit from your credit reports overnight.

Are you ready to get started with your journey to a better credit score?

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

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Monday Mailbag 9/17/2018

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Q: I have a bankruptcy 7 that still shows up due to the date filled by the court, also my Identity has been stolen 3 times so not sure if that’s is part of the problem. My understanding any bankruptcy 7 that is investigated or reopen will cause whatever payment to be claimed and collected. It’s with my new name that this old bankruptcy case still shows up. I applied for an apartment and the credit check they did showed the Bankruptcy. I have talked to the social security office,  federal judge and also the I.R.S to prove who I am thus that the reason for my name change which I only have for 3 or 4 years.

A: Identity theft is a major issue but, initiating a fraud alert with the credit bureaus may be your best option to stop it from happening again. Basically, once initiated, no one will be able to access your credit or open any new accounts without your verbal authorization on the phone.

To take care of the previous identity theft issues you will need to get a police report and file an ID theft affidavit with the FTC, file a claim with the CFPB, as well as contact the credit bureaus.

You can do all of these things yourself or hire a company like ours to do these things on your behalf.

Regarding the chapter 7 Bankruptcy, if the condo account was included in the bankruptcy paperwork and discharged, the account should not report any balance, not report a payment history, and report a status of included in Bankruptcy.

If the credit bureaus are reporting something else, your bankruptcy documents which state that the account was in fact included in the Bankruptcy should do the trick to updating the trade-line.

Investigating a Bankruptcy or account included in Bankruptcy will not reopen it. If the account was discharged in the Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and not reaffirmed, the debt is not collectible and should report as stated above.

Finally, the credit reporting agencies use 4 identifying data points to verify whether an account belongs to you or not. These are; name, address, date of birth and social security number. Even if you changed your name, if any 2 of the data points in the Bankruptcy public record match your information, the entire account will report to your credit report.

Changing your name does not create a new credit file, the credit reporting agencies just add the new name as an alias in your credit report. Changing your name does NOT protect you from identity theft, you need to initiate a fraud alert to protect yourself.

Q: Is it easier to sign up online or call a Rep and get set up? & will I get information to follow how everything is going and what is being worked on?

A: Either option is pretty easy. Signing up online is probably a little faster, it takes about a minute to complete the enrollment form as opposed to calling and giving the same information to a credit consultant over the phone.

As far as tracking progress, once we process your file and start contacting the credit bureaus we will email you the username and password to our website so you can log in and keep track of your case in our client portal.

You’ll be able to see all of the work being done on your case, when the letters were mailed out, who they were mailed out to, when to expect the responses/results back, what accounts have been deleted, and what is still remaining on your credit reports.

Are you ready to get started with your journey to a better credit score?

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 3-5 days.

Support. Award-winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

Identity Theft | How to Protect Your IDENTITY!

December 29, 2012 by  
Filed under Blogs, Identity Theft

Identity theft happens. It’s an unfortunate fact of modern life. But there are certain steps you can take to help keep your personal information from falling into the wrong hands.

Here are five easy ways:

  1. Read your credit card and bank statements carefully and often.
  2. Know your payment due dates.
    • If a bill doesn’t show up when you expect it, look into it.
  3. Read the statements from your health insurance plan.
    • Make sure the claims paid match the care you got.
  4. Shred any documents with personal and financial information.
  5. Review each of your three credit reports at least once a year. It’s easy, and it’s free.
    • Get your Free Credit Reports Here

Before you know it, protecting your personal information can be as routine as locking your doors at night.

Kids With Credit Reports

May 16, 2012 by  
Filed under Blogs, Identity Theft

 By: Credit.com

Children with Credit HistoryChildren are not supposed to have a credit report in their name, but new studies have found that the number of those who do is growing considerably, which can pose major problems for affected kids.

People under the age of 18 who have a credit report in their name are almost certainly the victims of identity theft, and this is a large and growing problem nationwide, according to a report from the Columbus Dispatch. Some studies have found that large amounts of kids have been a0ffected by identity theft, in which the crooks open large amounts of credit in their name and steal tens of thousands of dollars or more, and leave their young victims to carry the blame.

Often, this type of crime is carried out when a thief gains access to a kid’s Social Security number, the report said. Sometimes this can happen as a result of data breaches at hospitals or schools, and other times, their relatives may steal their identity. These youngsters are usually targeted because they will have no credit history and, since parents wouldn’t normally even think to make sure their son or daughter has a credit report in their name, the crime is unlikely to be discovered for a long time.

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“These kids’ Social Security numbers are particularly valuable to thieves because they can go years without detection,” Bo Holland, chief executive of AllClearID, told the newspaper. “Because of privacy restrictions, the credit bureaus can’t share with parents what they find in their (child’s) files. So they don’t know who is using the Social number or what accounts were opened.”

The most common way a child who has been victimized by this type of crime discovers the problem is when they turn 18—sometimes even older—and apply for a line of credit, the report said. To their dismay, they may learn that they’re saddled with significant debts, such as those for auto loans, credit cards and sometimes even mortgages, that have gone long periods of time without payment.

One thing parents who are concerned about this type of crime can do is contact the credit reporting agencies and ask them to put a freeze on their kids’ credit until they turn 18 and are capable of obtaining some types of loans on their own.

Source: Credit.com (http://s.tt/1bMPx)