Lately there have been a number of stories in the news about computer data being taken. That data has contained personal information about people, including but not limited to Social Security numbers and other identifying information which could be used for identity theft.
You should be aware of a few things.
1st, although this has been widely reported recently, I think these thefts have been going on for quite a while. Lately the companies who have lost data will report thefts and kinda hide between the other reports; hoping that people won’t notice.
Secondly, the theft of your Social Security number should NOT be such a big deal. The SS number is only *supposed* to be used for, well, Social Security purposes, not as a National ID number. However, the credit reporting agencies use it as a record locator to destinguish one person from another (a process that does not work as well as it should).
Third, the 3 big credit reporting agencies don’t really care what happens to your data. Oh, you can complain it is all wrong and so on, but YOU are not their customer. You are data to be sold. Credit card companies, stores, mortgage companies, THOSE are their customers. If it wasn’t fo a federal law years ago, you would not be able to even change incorrect information about you.
Ever wonder how you get all those “pre approved” credit card applications? The credit reporting agencies SELL your information to these companies. The company will contact them asking for a list of “Everyone in the 12345 zip code area with income above $15,000 and a credit score above 500″.
So no matter what you do, the credit reporting agencies have your number…