Tips for Arizona Consumers who are Pulling their Credit Reports for the First Time

It’s important for Arizona consumers who want to build and maintain a good credit score to regularly pull and check their credit reports. This will allow you to catch suspicious activity that could indicate identity theft and find errors that might bring down your credit score. If you’ve never checked your credit reports, don’t worry. Now is a good time to start. It won’t cost you anything to request copies of your credit reports from each of the three major reporting bureaus. It’s also fairly simple to make these requests, but there are a few things you should know if you’re pulling your credit reports for the first time. How Arizonians can Simplify the Process for Pulling Credit Reports There is a federal statute known as the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act. It grants you a free copy of your credit report from each of the major reporting bureaus every 12 months. If you have looked at your credit reports in a while, or if it’s your first time pulling them, it’s best to request all three at once. You can go to TransUnion.com, Experian.com, and Equifax.com and request a credit report from each bureau individually. There are online forms on each credit bureau’s website. Or, you can get their addresses and write letters requesting physical copies of your credit reports through the mail. Of course, the most convenient way to get copies of your credit reports from TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax is to go to www.annualcreditreport.com and fill out the easy online form offered here. Credit Report Pulling Prep-Work If you choose to fill out an online...

Why Arizona Consumers should be Concerned about what Happens on the Dark Web

Most Arizona consumers have at least heard about the Dark Web, but they may not know exactly what it is or why it exists. Of course, it isn’t a real place. The Dark Web is a term that describes the part of the internet that is inaccessible to most internet users. If you’re an average Arizona consumer, Dark Web activity should give you cause for concern. Why? This is where hackers go to sell stolen personal identifiable information (PII) online. If you are the victim of a single identity thief or a large-scale data breach, it’s likely that your data will show up on the Dark Web. Here, a fraudster can simply purchase it the way you might buy a toaster on Amazon. That’s pretty scary, huh? A Quick Rundown for Arizonians about the Differences between the Dark Web and the Deep Web Here is a fact that most Arizona consumers will find surprising: Over 90% of the internet is known as the Deep Web. This just means that a huge chunk of the internet isn’t searched by search engines, and most of the Deep Web is pretty innocent. Actually, it’s mostly made up of things like school websites, internal business pages, and database entries that are searchable within a site. For example, if you have access to your son or daughter’s school lunch menus or bus schedules, this information is probably part of the Deep Web. However, you can still get to it because you were given access, but it isn’t publicly searchable. What is publicly searchable on the internet? Any web address that starts with “www,” which...