Pre-Approved Credit Card Apps – A Thief’s Ticket to Cash

Posted on 14. Apr, 2006 by in Saving & Investing

creditcard_application.jpgThe other day I realized that after only about 6 months of living in a new apartment I have begun receiving about 3 pre-approved credit card applications each day. Each day! And one day last week I received 7! It was beginning to get rediculous.

So yesterday I decided to do something about it. There are several methods for removing yourself from these “prescreened offer” lists including writing each credit reporting agency directly or calling 1-888-5-OPTOUT. But being raised in the “digital age” I knew there had to be an easier way – an online way – of removing myself from these lists.

The answer is www.optoutprescreen.com. Even the FTC recommends this site for opting out of prescreened offers. But why are prescreened offers so dangerous?

Prescreened offers do not necessarily lower your credit score because they are “soft inquiries.” No, the real danger is from identity thieves who could easily pick one of those prescreened applications from your mailbox and apply for a credit card in your name – it’s really that easy. In fact, a while ago I wrote about a guy who sent in a torn-up credit card application that was accepted! Other than leaving your social security number on your car seat while it’s unlocked and the windows are down, this might be one of the best ways for a potential identity thief to obtain your information.

However, if you decide not to opt out of the prescreened mailings – for whatever reason – please at least shred the offers once you get them. It won’t stop someone from taking it out of your mailbox, but it will stop them from pulling it from the trash.

One Response to “Pre-Approved Credit Card Apps – A Thief’s Ticket to Cash”

  1. Lubna

    03. May, 2006

    anyone dealt with this company delray credit counseling, http://www.moneysavingfreetips.com/delray-credit-counseling.html corp before?

    “Delray Credit Counseling is a non-profit educational service that offers a variety of financial educational services. Ranging from non-profit free credit counseling, debt consolidation, budgeting, understanding credit reports and scores as well as understanding credit card charges.”

    are they legit? government sponsored?

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