Jewelry, electronics, your car - in the past, if a thief wanted to rob you they stole your valuable possessions.
But in today's information-based world, there's something even more valuable that thieves can take from you: your identity and with it, your credit and your good name.
Armed with personal information such as your Social Security number, credit card number, name, address, or your online identity, an identity thief can run up debts and commit fraud in your name. It is important to do all you can to
prevent identity theft because when unpaid loans and delinquent credit cards are reported in your name, they can go unnoticed for years, compounding the damage and ruining your credit.
More than 15 million people become victims every year. In fact, an identity is stolen every two seconds in the United States - which makes identity theft the fastest growing crime in the U.S. for the past four years. There are also many types of identity theft.
With a few pieces of personal information and a little creativity, thieves have learned a lot of ways to use your identity for their gain.
From damaged credit, to angry debt collectors, to a criminal record, identity theft can affect every part of your life.
When a thief borrows your identity and credit history, they never return it in good condition.
Monitoring your identity and credit may help prevent this damage from happening.
From getting a loan to getting a new job, your credit history is both more important than ever before and more vulnerable.