Entrepreneurs rely on their personal and business
credit report to seek funding and grow their
Protecting your credit record is crucial to
staying in business. If your identity were
stolen and your good credit is used fraudulently
it will have a devastating and lasting impact on
your ability to obtain credit or even do simple
things such as open a bank account.
These are the things you can do to keep your
credit record out of the hands of those who
would use it to hurt you and your small
PROTECT YOUR IDENTITY:
Use an Identity Theft Monitoring Service to
monitor your personal information 24/7, quickly
alert you to threats.
Some of these services provide added
services such as legal assistance to go after
those try to steal and use your identity.
Sign up to Identity Theft Monitoring.
LOCK DOWN CREDIT REPORTS:
Locking down your credit report will prevent
others from being able to successfully applying
for a credit in your name or obtaining any form
of credit in your name. In order for a lender
to issue a credit or provide a loan they first
check the credit report. Without access to the
credit report they will not grant credit. Lock
down each of the three credit reports here:
KEEP AN EYE ON CREDIT CARD SPENDING:
Keep track of the charges on your credit cards.
When you notice an unfamiliar charge
You can protest the charge with the
credit card company.
KEEP TRACK OF CREDIT SCORE:
Monitoring your credit score lets you know when
something changes so that you can investigate
and resolve the issue before its too late to get
According to the
federal government you're
entitled to a free credit report once per year
from the three credit reporting agencies (Experian,
TransUnion). Below are
other sources for obtaining your credit report.
Some are free and some will charge you a
GET IDENTITY THEFT INSURANCE:
In the event that someone use your information to
obtain credit you could be reimburse through
identity theft insurance.
It covers cost for things such as
restoring identity, repairing credit reports,
phone bills, lost wages, travel expenses,
notary, attorney fees, etc.
There a number of service providers that
provide identity theft insurance.
They also provide other services in
addition to identity theft insurance.
USE A CROSS SHREDDER:
Use a cross-cut
shredder to shred any paperwork you no longer
need that contains your child’s personal
If you don't want to buy a shredder you
can take the documents to a shredding service at
Office Depot/Office Max or FedEx Office.
FILE YOUR TAX RETURN EARLY:
Don't let thieves
file before you do.
Filing early will stop others
successfully filing in your name later.
GET YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY EARNING INFORMATION
Getting an Information Earning Report from the
Social Security Administration verifies that
your social security number is not being used
Start by creating a "My
Social Security Account".