What is a Credit Monitoring Service?
Your credit score is essential in your day to day financial transactions. Keeping your credit score intact is vital for your financial success. Even if you have a good score, it is essential to maintain or increase it. One way to help that process is to enroll in a credit monitoring service, which will help you in the long run. Below we will examine a common question, “what is a credit monitoring service” and “how to choose the best one.”
What is a Credit Monitoring Service?
Investopedia.com describes a credit monitoring service as a service that tracks the creditworthiness of a borrower. Furthermore, some credit monitoring services will monitor your accounts for identity theft and potential fraud. If a borrower’s credit card is stolen, a credit monitoring service would be able to figure out the unusual buying pattern and let the credit card holder know.
Depending on the service, the alerts come to the buyers by email, text message, or phone. The prices and services will vary. It is essential to do your research before signing up. A credit monitoring service will track a consumer’s credit report and credit score. Through this, consumers can be up to date about their credit score and credit report activity. Furthermore, this allows the consumer to plan for the future and repair any issues with their credit.
How to Choose the Best Credit Monitoring Service?
Education is critical when one is choosing the best credit monitoring service. Keep the following in mind when choosing which credit monitoring service is best for you.
Credit Report Checks & Applications
According to Addition Financial, as a consumer, your goal is to keep an eye on and monitor your credit score. The first thing to consider when choosing a credit monitoring service is that they will regularly check your credit report. Furthermore, they will take the time to advise you if any changes occur. This will help you stay on top of your score in case something out of the ordinary happens. If your identity gets stolen, the first sign of theft would be a credit application. For example, a thief steals your information and applies for a credit card linked to your social security number. A lot of credit monitoring services also track applications done in your name. They will notify you immediately to protect your identity. However, some credit monitoring services do not offer this protection. When shopping for the best credit monitoring service, make sure to inquire about this.
The second thing to look for when doing research is customizable notifications. A majority of companies do this. What works best is that you get to pick the notifications you want to be alerted about. Once the proper notification system is in place, you will know if something out of the ordinary occurs. Also, you can take the necessary measures to ensure that you are protected. As a member of SmartCredit you will receive daily updates of your credit and money transactions. We also have an Action button that allows you to verify transactions that are not yours. You will also receive alerts when payments are due. This allows you to easily plan your budget and spending. Your transactions are integrated with your Smart Credit Report for the entire picture.
Here are some examples of notifications you might want to get:
- Purchases over a certain dollar amount
- Online purchases
- Purchases conducted overseas
- New credit applications submitted under your name
- Credit score changes
- Public filings (these include both judgments and tax liens)
Credit monitoring services vary in price. On the lower end, they run around $10-15 per month. Some services can be significantly higher than that and will sometimes offer additional credit tools and services. SmartCredit offers great benefits with the two membership plans offered. In both plans, you receive unlimited access to our innovative tools like ScoreTracker, ScoreBuilder, ScoreMaster, and more.
Some credit monitoring companies offer reimbursements for the costs that are associated with credit card fraud or identity theft. However, this is not very common. Identity theft is a growing problem – and smart consumers know they can’t rely completely on an identity theft service to “take care” of the issue. In 2017, more than 16 million people were impacted by identity theft, accounting for nearly $17 billion in stolen money. The need for identity theft insurance and monitoring has become more critical than it ever has been before. While no product can 100% prevent identity theft from happening, with the help of SmartCredit identity theft insurance and monitoring services, you can be sure that your credit accounts are always being monitored and that you have the added benefit of recovery services at your disposal for you and your family.
Limits of Credit Monitoring Services
When learning about credit monitoring services, you must understand the limits and what they cannot do. Some credit monitoring services don’t have the resources to protect you from fraudulent emails, also known as phishing. As identity thieves acquire new technology to commit identity theft crimes, it is important that you also stay up to date with antivirus software on your computer. With new updates in antivirus software, you can stay better protected from attacks such as malware and keylogger software that hackers use to gain unauthorized access to your personal information. SmartCredit will help you avoid identity theft and will help you take the right steps to protect yourself.
Proper research will help you in your quest to find the right credit monitoring service. Also, making cost comparisons during this process will give you a better understanding of which service will work well on your wallet. With the proper education, you will find the best credit monitoring service.