1. Parenting
Send to a Friend via Email

Active Duty Alerts Help Protect Deploying Servicemembers

By

Imagine returning home from deployment only to discover that during your absence you’ve become a victim of identity theft.

The scenario may sound far-fetched but deployed servicemembers are a ripe target for identity thieves. To help reduce the chance of someone stealing your identity during your deployment you can place what’s known as an "active duty" alert in your credit report.

How the Alert Protects You
Upon filing an "active duty" alert, your credit report is flagged. Any business issuing credit in your name must verify your identity before an account is opened. Usually the verification is accomplished via a phone call. However reaching a deployed servicemember isn’t always feasible. In such cases, you can designate a spouse or someone else that you trust to handle the verification process.

Placing the Alert
Placing an "active duty" alert is easy and well worth your time. Simply contact one of the following three credit bureaus and request that an "active duty" alert be placed on your credit report.

  • Experian: 1-800-397-3742
  • Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
  • TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289
  • Please note, you only need to contact one of the three reporting bureaus. The company that you speak with is required to notify the other two reporting agencies.

    Ideally, you’ll want to place the "active duty" alert prior to deploying. If that’s not possible you can still make the request from any location worldwide.

    After the alert is placed it’ll stay on your report for up to one year. At any given time you may cancel or extend the alert by calling Experian, Equifax or TransUnion.

    1. About.com
    2. Parenting
    3. Military Families
    4. Military Pay and Personal Finances
    5. Active Duty Alerts Help Protect Deploying Servicemembers from Identity Theft

    ©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.