Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The VA Says: "Situation Normal. All Fouled Up."

If you're a veteran who was discharged from the military after 1975, there's a good chance your private info is in the hands of some thief. The VA has a toll-free number to take your questions (and irate, profanity-laced screaming, I assume), 1-800-FED INFO (1-800-333-4636). But here's some helpful info from our friend Jack Belles at Town and Country Mortgage:

Here is some information that can added to your website to direct people on precautionary measures that they can take to protect their credit.

There are three different credit bureaus.

Equifax (800) 525-6285
Experian (888) 397-3742 www.experian.com
Transunion (800) 680-7289

Consumers have the right to contact these bureaus and have a fraud alert placed on their credit file. If you report a fraud alert to one bureau they are supposed to report to the other bureaus.

There are two types of alerts. An "initial alert" which stays on your report for 90 days, and an "extended alert" that stay on your record for 7 years. This requires creditors to get your approval before credit is extended.

Note: This can prevent someone from obtaining credit in your name. It can also delay your credit approval should you try to obtain additional credit.

Jack Belles