Thursday, February 10, 2005

National Consumer Protection Week 2005

This week is National Consumer Protection Week, and this year's NCPW focuses on "Identity Theft: When Fact Becomes Fiction." In keeping with that theme, here are some of the best sites for resources about protecting yourself from Identity Theft:

The NCPW 2005 web site has links to a wide range of consumer information on Identity Theft in both English and Spanish.

The Federal Trade Commission has a National Resource for Identity Theft, Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft and How Not to Get Hooked by a 'Phishing' Scam, which provide information for protecting yourself and what to do if you fall victim to a scam.

The U.S. Department of Justice has a question & answer web page on Identity Theft and Fraud, an Identity Theft Quiz for Consumers, and a Special Report on Phishing.

The Illinois Attorney General's Consumer Corner this month focuses on two issues, Identity Theft and wireless phone companies.

The AG says that "reviewing your credit report for errors and unauthorized activity on a regular basis is the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself from identity theft." She also explains a service through which Illinois residents will be entitled to one free credit report a year from each of the three national reporting agencies, beginning March 1, 2005. The Illinois Attorney General also has several Publications and Brochures about Identity Theft in English and Spanish.

Sabrina I. Pacifici, Identity Theft: A Bibliography of Federal, State, Consumer and News Resources, (Feb. 17, 2003).

The Open Directory Project's Directory of Identity Theft web resources.The Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) has information and advice for consumers, victims, businesses and law enforcement; links to laws, statistics and other resources; contact information for the three credit reporting agencies; and scam & consumer alerts. Information is available in English and Spanish.

The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) has news and alerts, reports and articles, links to anti-fraud organizations, and consumer advice, including How to Avoid Phishing Scams and What To Do If You've Given Out Your Personal Financial Information. See also Origins of the Word "Phishing".

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse has Identity Theft Resources and information on other privacy issues. Information is available in English and Spanish.

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