In previous posts we’ve covered the importance of keeping track of your credit score, and even several tips on what you can do to improve your credit score. However, there are a lot of people that don’t realize how important it is to look through their credit score on a consistent basis and ensure that their credit is managed well.
When you are monitoring your credit score, you should understand that you will need to look closely at each account. As you are looking at each account, you want to make sure that it is something that you have actually started. Having identities stolen is something that is happening all too often, and if someone steals your identity you want to make sure that you find the account and shut it down.
Credit Scores and Identity Theft
If you are not looking into your credit score on a consistent basis, you should realize that someone could be spending money in your name. This can negatively affect your credit score and your credit score is something that will be of significant financial importance throughout your life. Having a damaged credit score can affect your ability to take out new lines of credit and it can even affect your ability to make big purchases like a home. You should make sure that your credit score is healthy and that you are monitoring it consistently.
So, you will want to start by understanding that there are three different companies that will have record of your credit score. Each year, you are allowed to get your credit score from these three institutions without having to pay any fee. Getting your credit score checked annually is a great way to ensure that you are staying on top of your score. When you get your credit score, you want to make sure that you are reading through it thoroughly.
Although it may not be an intriguing read, you should be sure that there are not accounts on the records that you do not recognize. Take the time that you need to scour each account and ensure you are happy with the score that has been reflected. Don’t be afraid to question your score if you find that it has dropped significantly in a year. When your financial situation has not changed, a drop in score can be a sound indicator of identity theft. It is important that you investigate exactly why your score has dropped and make sure that you understand the reasoning behind the score dropping before you move on.
Look Out For Your Children
As you are checking your credit score, you should also be sure that you are checking the credit score of your child. Although that may sound silly, there are many identity thieves that are using the name and information of children to ensure they are able to get away with using the account information for as long as possible. There are not a lot of parents that check their child’s credit score and because of this, they realize that they can get away with it for a longer amount of time.
If this all sounds a little too overwhelming for you, it is important that you know how you are going to monitor your score through another individual. Getting a credit monitoring service can be a lot easier than you would think. Talk to your bank about different options that they have. You will find that the majority of banks have an identity theft management branch that will monitor your credit score for you.
Understand What You’re Paying For
If you sign up for one of these services, you should understand exactly what you are paying for. Take time to read through the fine print of your contract and understand what you need to do to ensure that those working in your behalf have all of the information that they need. Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as possible throughout the time you are learning about this service. You should feel very comfortable with the services that are being provided and feel comforted by the job that is being done.
Your credit sore and your identity are both very important. When you know that you are in complete control of these, you can be sure that you are on sound financial ground. But, if someone should take out a line of credit in your name it can have a monumentally bad effect on your credit score. Take time today to figure out how you are going to manage your credit score and ensure that you are the only person that is using your name to take out new lines of credit.