I want to recommend this wonderful book by Clark Howard the consumer advice guru that I think everyone should read. The book is called Clark Howard’s Living Large in Lean Times: 250+ Ways to Buy Smarter, Spend Smarter, and Save Money. It is packed with money saving tips and suggestions on anything from how to get a discount on prescription drugs to student loans.
My absolute favorite tip is as follows: Credit Freeze!
With the recent Equifax breach (that is much more involved than they reported – see Money Talk’s report here ) freezing your credit history is the best advice anyone can give you. I froze our credit years ago.
You can freeze your credit reports with each of the three major credit reporting agencies (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) to safeguard them from fraud.
Crooks are getting smarter and smarter each day. The latest scheme (which send chills down my spine) is “House Stealing” see this article written by the FBI on how easy it is for them to take control of your home – click here!
Clark’s answer to this and other nightmare identity theft schemes is to “Freeze your credit” for as little as $0 to $30 depending on your state! That’s a small price (per bureau) for piece of mind, this is a one-time charge. Victims of prior identity theft and seniors can usually get this for free. This gives you the opportunity to create a “pin” that only you know therefore safeguarding your credit and identity. When you wish to open a new line of credit, apply for a credit card or car loan, etc., you just contact the credit bureau and un-freeze your account.
I thought this was a wonderful idea and I’m going to do this immediately especially my Social Security number is floating around to several of my affiliate partners. This made my husband very uncomfortable. I suggest you all do the same. It’s a small investment to keep your identity safe. It would cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars to undue the damage from identity theft. I know lawyers who fell victim and they damage not only cost them to rectify it took them years to get out from under the damage.
Buy Clark’s book and read all the great tips he recommends.