The CFA’s Best Practices for Identity Theft Services

When the Consumer Federation of America took a hard look at identity theft service providers two years ago, the picture wasn’t pretty. It reviewed the websites for 16 leading providers and found the language describing their offerings confusing and unclear, at best.

The worst offenders appeared downright misleading, pitching services that weren’t really what they claimed to be. A bait-and-switch? Not exactly, but there was an apparent gap between services advertised and services rendered.

Something needed to be done.

After the release of its March 2009 report, , the CFA formed an identity theft best practices working group, which included industry representatives as well as consumer protection and privacy advocates. Identity Theft 911 served as a group member and drew from its own experience and methodologies to help shape the best practices. This month’s release of the is the result of the group’s efforts—a veritable call-to-arms for the industry and its business clients.

“Claiming that identity theft is preventable is an irresponsible business practice,” said Adam Levin, Identity Theft 911’s chairman and cofounder. “Identity theft risk can be reduced if the appropriate tools are in place for victimization to be detected at an early stage. By establishing industry best practices, companies are aware of the most responsible way to clearly and accurately market and conduct their services.”

The guidelines recommend that identity theft service providers have readily available and transparent privacy policies. They also ask providers to clearly explain to consumers why their personal information is needed and how it will be used.

Identity Theft 911 not only follows these best practices, we actually go beyond what the CFA has outlined.

“By doing this, we hope to give consumers a higher degree of confidence when choosing the right provider at a time when they most need guidance and support,” said Matt Cullina, Identity Theft 911 chief executive officer.

Please read the full press of IDT911′s endorsement of the CFA’s Best Practices for Identity Theft Services.

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