Tag Archives: credit report

Learn to Dispute Charges on Your Credit Report for After Shopping Season

Check credit after holiday shoppingAfter all is said and done with holiday shopping, even if you were very careful with credit card usage, staying close to budget and being a responsible borrower, there is still a chance for errors to end up on your credit report. Some of this may be errors, or it could be fraud, and it is important to know how to report and resolve the issue. The credit and finance experts at Equifax share information about what to do when you find errors on your credit report, after the holidays or otherwise, in the new article, “

How Do I Dispute Information on My Credit Report?”

First, you want to carefully look over your credit report for all activity. If you spot something off, you need to dispute it with the credit reporting agency right away. The dispute is free of charge, and depending on the agency, you may have to call or send in the dispute by mail. Equifax offers free and easy online disputes. If you send in a dispute and it is resolved, the one credit reporting agency will notify the other two agencies of the corrected information. If you want to have the most up to date information though, in the case of needing to have a spotless report for an application for a mortgage in Atlanta or the like, you should contact each agency independently and immediately.

After you report your dispute, the credit agencies are legally required to investigate within 30 to 45 days, and before the time has elapsed, the credit agency will inform you of their findings. From there, the disputed item will either be removed or the reporting agency will explain that the findings of their investigation lead them to keep it on.

Even if the disputed item wasn’t removed, you should keep a close eye on your credit report going forward and dispute as necessary. If you are concerned about activity on your credit file (due to identity theft or potential identity theft), you may want to sign up for a credit monitoring service like the Equifax Complete plan.

For more information about protecting your credit score and more

personal finance advice, check the Equifax Finance Blog.

Do I Need Identity Theft Insurance?

Faster recovery with identity theft protection

Faster recovery with identity theft protection

You’ve probably seen advertisements for identity theft insurance. Have you wondered what it really is and if it’s something you need?

The insurance pros over at the Equifax Finance blog recently covered the topic of identity theft insurance in the article, “

Do I need Identity Theft Insurance?

Here’s the rundown: Identity theft insurance is niche insurance, for those people who are concerned about the costs involved with repairing their identity should a theft ever occur. Recovering from identity theft can be costly in time and in money. Identity theft insurance can’t actually stop a theft, of course. It just helps reimburse individuals for the costs of restoring their identity, like phone bills, lost wages, notary costs, certified mail costs, and possible even attorney’s fees. The insurance also usually provides access to services that can also help. If you are interested in purchasing identity theft insurance, be sure you know what you are buying. Get all the details on policies from several different companies, comparing price, coverage, limits and deductibles.

If you have been a victim of identity theft, call one of the three major credit reporting agencies to request a fraud alert (whichever agency you contact will alert the other two agencies, so you only need to call one). Order a copy of your

credit report so you can see what is going on.

Get more identity theft protection information at the Equifax Finance blog.

A First Time Guide to Your Credit Report

Equifax is happy to share with you what everything in your credit report means

Equifax is happy to share with you what everything in your credit report means

If you are new to borrowing or are trying to repair your credit, it is important to know your way around your annual

credit report. Diane Moogalian has some great information about how to decipher your credit report in her Equifax Finance Blog article, “

Building a Strong Credit Report from the Beginning.”

Regardless of which credit agency’s report you are looking over for the first time, the same categories are present in the reports of Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. These categories are identifying information, trade lines, inquiry information and public record information. Continue reading

Use Fraud Alerts to Protect Yourself from Holiday Credit Heartburn

fraud alerts and security freezes

fraud alerts and security freezes

After all that holiday spending, have you been diligent about following up and checking your credit cards to make sure you didn’t get any unwanted holiday cheer for fraudsters and identity thieves? There are ways to protect your

credit score from holiday heartburn that you can use to help yourself stay safe. The Equifax Finance Blog explores them in its series, “

Fraud Alert Versus Security Freeze,” and it’s a good idea to know how they both work.

When your credit is damaged by fraudulent activities, it takes time to repair and heal itself through regular borrowing and timely repayments. That being said, fraud alerts and security freezes tell others that you have either been a victim or are proactive about only allowing your credit to be shared with your approval. Security freezes work like a bouncer to keep others from accessing your credit or opening new accounts in your name without your direct approval.

Fraud alerts, on the other hand, work like red flags on your account. Third parties can see your credit as usual, but when they come across these red flags, they have to contact you when they come across activity which may be suspicious. There are three kinds of fraud alerts, and they have varying durations: the initial fraud alert lasts for 90 says, an active duty fraud alert lasts for a year and an extended fraud alert lasts for seven years. When a fraud alert is placed on your account, you also are entitled to a free

credit report.

Be sure to check out the

Equifax Finance Blog for more information about protective measures for your credit, as well as great information on taxes, insurance, retirement planning and real estate.