As a military retiree and disabled veteran, I have been reading the information about the recent VA ID Theft situation with a growing sense of alarm. But being a great procrastinator, my first inclination was to blow this off, and go on about my business. After all I have a busy schedule and an ever-growing work list to keep up with; I don't have time to worry about filing a fraud alert. Besides there are over 26.5 million of us on this list -- I'll never get through to file a fraud report.
But, as I thought more about my own experience in dealing with clearing fraudulent credit reporting issues -- a state tax lien for a state I didn't live in -- I realized how difficult this would be to deal with if I didn't take care of it right away. So I called one of the "Big Three" credit reporting agencies and found out that I could file my fraud alert online in just a few minutes.
I quickly went to their website and filled out a short form with my name, address, social security number, date of birth, employer, and phone number. Then I had to verify my identity by answering four questions about my current credit situation; questions like "What is your current mortgage payment?" and "How much is your truck payment?"
Within five minutes I had filed my fraud alert and was given a free online copy of my credit report. Thankfully I can report that there was nothing unexpected on my report and I can relax knowing that my credit rating is safe.
Do yourself a favor, if you haven't taken action on this matter you need to as soon as possible. File a fraud alert, it's painless and can give you the assurance that your credit is protected.
Note: If you are squeamish about giving your social security number and personal information online you can do this all over the phone.