Don’t think a person could really get a credit card in your name if they dug through your mail or trash, pulled out a direct mail credit solicitation, added a different address and sent it in?
Well you’d be wrong. That’s exactly what can happen as reported by MSNBC.
As big a pain in the ass as it is, you really need to thoroughly shred (with a cross cutter) the credit solicitations that come to you in the mail.
But wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to stop them from coming at all?
There is! It’s called OptOutPrescreen. After you register, credit companies must stop sending you direct mail solicitations. You can choose to have mail stopped for 5 years or select a permanent option which requires you to print out, sign and snail mail a piece of paper. You can always return to the site and opt back in to receive mailings if you change your mind.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) required all the major credit reporting agencies to give consumers the ability to "opt-out" of receiving offers for pre-approved credit or insurance. This site is the mechanism by which the credit agencies comply with that law.
I registered about a year ago and it works! eM has now registered as well.
We still need to hang onto the shredder but we have a lot less to feed it!
Protecting Your Identity on the Internet was the first in this four part DIY series. Stay tuned for more postings in this identity and credit protection series.