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Safer Credit Report Checks Through The FTC

By Faye Mergel
Published: Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

The economic climate right now has really forced consumers to be very critical of their finances. Failing to keep an eye on their finances in this economic downturn could be disastrous for consumers. Now more than ever, it is very important for consumers to check their credit reports.

Safer Credit Report Checks Through The FTCThe need for constant credit report monitoring is not going unnoticed among the more entrepreneurial in the credit industry. A lot of consumers are getting offers, especially online, for credit report checking and monitoring. Most of these are offered with a fee free trial period but will change into a monthly paid service once the trial period ends. Considering the tight hold that consumers are keeping on their money these days, such practices are quite unwelcome. What’s more, these offers usually require consumers to give their credit or debit card numbers in order for them to avail of the free services.

There is a lot of confusion among consumers on what really is the safest and most inexpensive way for them to monitor their credit reports. Experts agree that the best way for consumers to monitor their credit reports is to go directly to the Federal Trade Commission and use the resources offered there.

The Federal Trade Commission or FTC maintains an online presence where consumers can easily browse to and find the resources they need to check on their credit reports. Going through the FTC’s websites is definitely better than using other online resources offering credit report checks, some of which are sites which the FTC labels as “impostor websites”.

The holiday season was just a couple of months past and consumers who got caught up in the shopping frenzy will need to check their credit reports and see just how badly their holiday overspending hurt their credit standing. Now would be a good time for consumers to go to the FTCs website, www.ftc.gov, and see what resources they can use to check and monitor their credit standing.

Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act of the government, consumers also have the right to get a free credit report.

To get their free credit reports, consumers need only visit the website and follow the instructions there. It is very important for consumers to follow the instructions very well and to provide accurate information. The website is not ad-free incidentally. However, any ads that come out of the website are not mandatory and consumers can simply ignore them.

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