San Diego, CA - Have you received a
letter from ChoicePoint, a specialty consumer reporting
organization that compiles and sells vast amounts of
records, many of a highly confidential and sensitive
nature, about millions of Americans? If you do, the letter
will tell you and about 150,000 other consumers that you
are one of their choicest, however unfortunate, record
holders, because some of your most personal and private
information was purchased from ChoicePoint by identity
thieves, who duped them in the credentialing process.
Notification letters are being prepared by ChoicePoint,
Inc., for mailing to some 35,000 Californians and an
additional 110,000 recipients in other states. Some
consumer advocates worry that there is potentially an
additional unknown multitude, maybe hundreds of thousands,
still to be determined across the country who have been
victimized and don't know it yet.
If you are among the thousands of ChoicePoint victims or
receive a similar letter, will you know what to do? Who
will you turn to for advice and help?
"Consumers across the nation can expect to be bombarded
with offers to sign up for credit monitoring services,
identity theft prevention services, identity theft
insurance, or other programs and services of limited value
by companies aimed solely at profiting from the situation.
Don't get scammed again," warned Paul S. Richard,
executive director of the award winning Institute of
Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) based in San Diego,
"It's very upsetting and a seemingly insurmountable
challenge for unsuspecting consumers to suddenly learn
their most personal and private information may have been
sent out to crooks, especially by a company, ChoicePoint,
that many didn't even know existed," Richard noted. "ChoicePoint
began as a subsidiary of Equifax in 1997, one of the big
three credit reporting agencies. ChoicePoint has about 19
billion public records in its database including DMV,
license and deed transfers, military records, names,
addresses and social security numbers." he continued.
ChoicePoint has also announced they are providing free
credit-monitoring services to those 145,000 individuals it
deems to be at-risk. Expensive credit monitoring services
that don't even monitor specialty report companies like
ChoicePoint aren't very useful. Most only monitor a single
credit bureau anyhow. The monitoring service also does not
address the task ahead for victims.
Identity theft insurance is not really insurance, because
as the ChoicePoint incident clearly points out, it is
virtually impossible to prevent or insure against this
crime. In this case identity theft insurance, available on
some homeowner policies, may help victims recover some of
the expense involved in clearing their good name, but it
will certainly not reduce the time and hassle.
Many companies who offer identity theft prevention and
assistance services have already indicated the ChoicePoint
incident would be considered a "pre-existing condition",
so signing up for their services now would be of little,
if any, value to the at-risk consumer.
The ICFE has alerted its nationwide network consisting of
hundreds of Certified Credit Report Reviewers and Identity
Theft Prevention Specialists on how to assist consumers in
prevention and help the potential victims of the
ChoicePoint breach. They are trained in mitigating the
serious damage that can and does occur in cases of
The ICFE is also introducing its credit report reviewers
and ID prevention specialists to a revolutionary software
program called CasePlanner™, now available through and
also utilized by the ICFE under a special arrangement with
Global Fraud Solutions, LLC, an international leader in
identity theft solutions. CasePlanner™ is a patent-pending
identity theft risk reduction and fraud resolution
software package designed to address the needs of both
concerned consumers and victims of identity theft.
"The proverbial tangled web of deception is uniquely
manifested in each case of identity theft. The gargantuan
effort required to undo it is enough for 75 percent of the
victims to throw up their hands in disgust and give up,
until CasePlanner™," said Richard. "First, there are no
monthly fees. Second, it is so comprehensive that users
who are victims are assured of a faster, more complete
identity and credit recovery. And third, concerned
consumers who want to guard against identity theft and
prevent it from happening as much as possible will find
CasePlanner™ to be an enormous advantage," said Richard,
commenting on the ease of using the program.
There are many web sites that can help consumers
understand the process of documenting and reporting their
identity theft case. But it is still the victim's
responsibility to discover how that information should be
reported, to document their case for each organization
they are working with, and then follow up with each of
those organizations until the case has been closed.
Working with a professionally trained and qualified
individual is critical in identity theft cases.
CasePlanner™ provides many powerful tools in the fight
against identity theft: 1) An awareness and prevention
guide to help educate consumers how thieves gain their
information and how to avoid being victimized; 2) An
encrypted personal account registry where consumers can
store their personal information enabling a rapid and
decisive response in the event these accounts are ever
compromised; 3) An ID inventory to document and record
identification and financial instruments contained in
their wallet, purse, vehicle glove box, etc; and 4) An
exclusive resolution case file system that walks consumers
step-by-step through the process of documenting,
reporting, and resolving their identity theft case if they
are ever victimized.
For more information about CasePlanner™ please visit
For more information about Credit Report Reviewers and
Identity Theft Prevention Specialists please visit
For more information: Paul S. Richard - ICFE Executive
For more information: Mike Barnett, - General Manager
Global Fraud Solutions 877-230-1164.
About Global Fraud Solutions, LLC:
Global Fraud Solutions is an international leader in
Identity Theft solutions, and is dedicated to combating
fraud by providing powerful and effective anti-fraud
solutions for consumers, businesses, financial
institutions, and law enforcement. From innovative and
proprietary solutions, such as the patent-pending
CasePlanner™ Identity Theft Case Management and Reporting
System, to custom-developed solutions created for the
unique requirements of individual clients, GFS' anti-fraud
products and services achieve outstanding results,
significant savings of time, expense and Resources, and
improve operational efficiency and effectiveness. Many of
GFS' proprietary systems and services can be
custom-branded for our clients' organization.
Global Fraud Solutions, LLC
6905 South 1300 East; Suite 365
Midvale, Utah 84047
About the ICFE:
The Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE) was founded in 1982 by the late Loren Dunton (creator of the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation). The ICFE is dedicated to helping consumers of all ages to improve their spending, increase savings and use credit more wisely.
The ICFE is an award winning, nonprofit, consumer education organization that has helped millions of people through its education programs and Resources. It publishes the Do-It-Yourself Credit File correction Guide, which is updated annually. The ICFE has distributed over one million Credit/Debit Card Warning Labels and Credit/Debit Card Sleeves world wide.
The ICFE became an official partner with the Department of Defense/Financial Readiness Campaign in June of 2004.The ICFE was an active partner in the California Student Debt Resource Awareness Project (CASDRAP) which resulted in a new web site: (studentdebthelp.org). CASDRAP disbanded in 2010, shortly after the web site project was completed. In 2011 the ICFE assumed the single sponsorship of the (studentdebthelp.org) web site and is now responsible for its content and operation.
The ICFE is also an on-line help for consumers who spend too much. ICFE's spending help was featured in PARADE Magazine in the Intelligence Report section. The money helps and tips are from the ICFE's Money Instruction Book, our course in personal finance.
Visit the ICFE's other web sites at: www.financial-education-icfe.org and studentdebthelp.org. Both sites helps consumers and students with mending spending, learning about the proper use of credit, budget and expense guidelines, how to set up and implement a spending-plan and also how to access financial education courses and how to teach children about money. Other ICFE services include: Ask Mr. G, a free eNews, and an online resource center for students, parents and educators, plus financial education learning tools and a book store.