While there are some critics of identity theft protection and credit monitoring services, consumers need a tool to fight against identity theft and fraud in today’s data breach climate. As a result of this demand, there has been a flurry of new services to the market in the last few years. The array of options is beneficial for consumers, but can also be challenging to understand what different features do and how they are protected.
We are proud of our product, ProtectMyID, and continue to assess how the industry is progressing and what these services can do better for the consumer. That’s why Experian is a member of the Consumer Federation of America’s Identity Theft Service Best Practices Working Group.
The group convenes to address industry changes and best practices. We came together recently to update a guidance document originally issued in 2011 that encourages for-profit identity theft service providers to follow responsible practices.
This is important for our industry. Data breaches and identity theft are unnerving experiences for consumers. If victimized, they should be provided with clear communications from the breached company where the data was exposed and the best quality monitoring and fraud resolution possible.
What I believe is best in class is a product that offers the consumer, at the minimum, the following: access to their credit report, credit monitoring, fraud resolution assistance and identity theft insurance. However, there is no bullet proof service and consumers need to do their part. They should always take action by enrolling in a free offer of protection from a breached organization, monitor their financial accounts and practice good security habits on an ongoing basis.
For a copy of the complete guide, visit the Federation’s site.