As identity thieves become more of a threat to individuals and businesses, many people wish they had someone-or something-to watch over and guard their valuable financial information.
While most consumers can't afford a financial bodyguard, many are taking advantage of a real-time identity management service that can potentially avert identity crimes.
I consider one service, Identity Sweep, developed with MyPublic Info (MyPublicInfo.com) and Affinion Group (www.affiniongroup .com), a leader in credit monitoring and identity theft, to be more proactive than any other. It may be the consumer's best chance at avoiding identity-related criminal abuse. Identity Sweep protects consumer identities in three ways:
1. It includes a leading-edge identity fraud detection technology that scans billions of public records for suspicious activity associated with identity fraud, including attempts to create a synthetic identity. The service analyzes the suspicious activity to provide a risk score.
2. It searches Internet newsgroups, search engines, blogs and hundreds of thousands of chat rooms and Web sites looking for personal and financial information. It instantly notifies consumers by e-mail of any suspicious activity related to their personal information before the customer is victimized. This technology works faster than credit card and credit bureau monitoring services.
3. It scans online directories that list a consumer's information and requests removal of that information to prevent abuse by telemarketers and identity thieves.