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Don't Let Identity Theft Haunt You This Fall
October 6, 2017
Identity theft only happens to people who shop online and constantly use their credit cards, so as long as I always pay with cash, my identity is safe, right?
Not so fast! ID theft can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere.
You head to your local farmers market to pick up some early season pumpkins.
On the way, you stop at an ATM, punch in your PIN to get some cash, and get an "ACCOUNT OVERDRAWN" message.
How can this be? It was just payday and you've only used your card once since then to get gas. This must be a mistake. It could be a bank error, but that's unlikely.What's more likely: Your card information was stolen when you swiped it at the gas pump or the ATM – something called card reader skimming.
Or you could be a victim of identity theft – a far more complicated problem, and one that can be extraordinarily challenging to solve.
Both scenarios are more common than you may think. How common?
Nearly 15.5 million people in the U.S. were victims of identity fraud in 2016.1 And, in the first six months of 2017, compromised payment cards rose 39%.2
But hacked ATM cards aren't the only way to fall victim to identity theft.
3 common ways ID theft can happen
- Dumpster diving: Crooks may dig through your trash to find bills or other items containing your personal information.
- Phishing: Typically sent by email, a thief will pose as a seemingly legitimate organization, agency or company asking for information like usernames, passwords or credit card details.
- Transactions on unsecure websites: When you shop online, make sure the URL of the site you're buying from starts with "https." The "s" means it's a secure site and that the communication between your browser and the website is encrypted.
Keeping your identity protected
There's not much you can do to completely safeguard yourself from ID theft and fraud, but there are a few precautionary steps you can take.
One of the most important is to keep a close eye on your personal information and account activities, which identity monitoring services can help you do.
If you're a Thrivent member, you can enroll in identity monitoring as a benefit of your membership. You can choose from either a FREE3 plan or one at a significant discount.
Thrivent identity monitoring membership benefit
- Choose from the free ProtectMyID® Select3 option or the discounted, more comprehensive ProtectMyID option.
- Benefit from daily scans that check for 50 leading indicators of identity theft.
- Receive email or text alerts.
- Get help from an Identity Theft Resolution Agent if ID theft does occur.
- Receive identity theft insurance.4
The plan is provided by Experian® ProtectMyID, a leading full-service provider of identity theft monitoring, detection and fraud resolution.
This membership benefit will assist you in monitoring any activity that impacts your Experian PLUS Score.5 It's just one way you get more from your Thrivent membership.
Learn more and enroll today at Thrivent.com/idprotection.
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Identity protection services are subject to exclusions and limitations. You must be a Thrivent Financial member, age 18 or older, to enroll in this benefit. If you are not a member, apply now. Thrivent could change or discontinue the identity protection benefit, or any part of it, at any time.
Thrivent Financial receives payment from ConsumerInfo.com, Inc., an Experian®
company, based on the purchases of ProtectMyID by Thrivent Financial members. Compensation
from ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. for member purchases of ProtectMyID is used by Thrivent
Financial for the costs associated with providing discounted identity monitoring products
1 2017 Identity Fraud Study, Javelin Strategy & Research
3 ProtectMyID® Select is complimentary to Thrivent Financial members
for two years, and thereafter is available at a discounted rate.
4 Identity Theft Insurance underwritten by insurance company subsidiaries or affiliates of American International Group, Inc. Refer to the actual policies for complete terms, conditions and exclusions of coverage.
5 About PLUS ScoreSM
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
There are various types of credit scores. The PLUS Score is a credit score model developed by Experian® to help you see and understand your relative credit risk level for educational purposes. It is not a score used by lenders or other commercial users for credit decisions.
PLUS Scores range from 330 to 830. Higher scores represent a greater likelihood that you'll pay back your debts so you are viewed as being a lower credit risk. A lower score indicates that you may be a higher credit risk (risk of default). There are many different credit scoring models that can give you a different assessment of your credit rating and relative risk for the same credit report. Lenders or insurers use credit scores different from the PLUS Score. For some consumers, the risk assessment of a PLUS Score could vary, sometimes substantially, from a score used by a lender. If a score used by a lender is lower than your educational PLUS Score, it is possible that this difference can lead to higher interest rates and sometimes credit denial.
There are three different major credit reporting agencies - the Experian® credit bureau, TransUnion®, and Equifax® -- that maintain a record of your credit history known as your credit file. Your PLUS Score is based on the information in your credit file at the time it is requested. Your credit file information can vary from agency to agency because some lenders report your credit history to only one or two of the agencies. So your PLUS Score can vary if the information they have on file for you is different. Since the information in your report can change over time, your PLUS Score may also change.