(PRWEB) March 2, 2005
Identity theft is the number one crime in America today. The Federal Trade Commission stated that one-in-eight adults fell victim to identity theft over the last five years. With an estimated 38% of identity theft victims not reporting the crime, the credit histories of thousands have suffered needlessly.
Lee Harrison Credit Restoration, a credit service organization recently named the top business and website in the credit repair industry by Alexander HaigÂs World Business Review, has provided some facts about how identity theft occurs and precautions that individuals can take to keep it from happening.
Identity theft occurs when someone uses an individualÂs personal information, without his or her permission, to commit fraud. For example, by opening a credit card account, running up a large bill, and not paying it. That negative information will affect the credit report of the person whose name is on the credit card, not the identity thief using it.
ÂThe credit bureaus Experian and Trans Unions leave out a number of your Social Security number and your date of birth to protect consumers from identity theft,Â said Lee Harrison, Founder and President of Lee Harrison Credit Restoration. ÂHowever, Equifax and CSC are collection agencies and information services, and once you fill out a credit application, your Social Security number, date of birth, address, and other personal information become public information.Â
According to Lee Harrison, there are several people who are entitled to see an individualÂs credit report, along with all the personal information on it. This list includes mortgage companies, car dealerships, places where individuals apply for employment, insurance companies, and banks. Unfortunately, anyone who isnÂt entitled but has the right knowledge and a computer can also get that information, and these are the people most likely to commit identity theft.
Lee Harrison has suggested several ways to make personal information more secure and to prevent identity theft:
Â Request that your name be excluded from credit reporting agenciesÂ list for unsolicited credit and insurance offers (this can be done by calling toll-free 1-888-567-8688)
Â Make sure a Security Alert is on file with all nationwide consumer credit reporting companies
Â Do not give your Social Security number and driverÂs license number out at the same time
Â When you pull your credit report, pull it from Experian or Trans Union (anyone who pulls your credit report must have your permission in writing)
Â Review your credit report regularly, about every three months
The longer inaccurate credit information goes uncontested, the longer it will take to resolve, and credit histories may be scarred in the process. To learn more about identity theft, preventing it, and coping with its consequences, visit http://www.LHCreditRepair.com.
About Lee Harrison Credit Restoration
Lee Harrison Credit Restoration is a fully licensed, registered, and bonded credit service organization located in Naples, Texas. The company has specialized in helping people repair and restore their credit history due to bankruptcy, bad credit, or identity theft for over 29 years.