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The Resource Center Credit Fraud & Credit Monitoring | article

Celebrate May Day with Your Credit Report

May Day is a holiday that has been celebrated throughout the Northern Hemisphere for centuries, with revelers in countries across the globe taking part in a myriad of activities inspired by regional heritage and lore. With the United States being the cultural melting pot that it is, May Day celebrations here borrow from a wide array of traditions that have origins stemming from across the globe. Whether you dance around the maypole or deliver flowers to friends and neighbors, this holiday is a great excuse to enjoy the change of seasons and rid yourself of any remaining winter blues.

But just because the weather has improved, that doesn't mean that issues that plagued you during the colder months aren't still lingering. Among them could be damage you incurred on your credit report that came about from an identity theft incident you may have unknowingly experienced.

Spring flowers call for seasonal spending
Like others, in preparation for the good weather, you may have gone on somewhat of a shopping spree to give your home and wardrobe a more seasonally appropriate feel. Whether you invested in the latest footwear for your early evening walks now that the sun is out later and the air is more pleasant, or you bought new deck furniture to show off at your first barbecue, you likely pulled out the credit card at least once or twice over the past few weeks.

The more you use your card, the more vulnerable you are to theft
Unfortunately, when you are actively using your credit or debit card, you increase the likelihood for identity theft, as such fraudsters are always out there waiting for you to slip up. Whether that includes straight-up theft of your card or even more just copying down your account number to make purchases of their own in your name, there are seemingly countless ways that thieves can commit this crime and hurt your credit score.

Don't let your card out of your sight
Be extremely aware of your surroundings whenever you go on a spending spree, whether that be at the mall or from the comfort of your computer at home. When you hand your card to a teller, never let it out of your sight so you don't give the individual a chance to copy your account number or switch your card with another, similar looking card that isn't active. Should you be making purchases online, only shop at reputable websites that have security measures in place to help you avoid trouble.

By enrolling in an identity monitoring program, you will be alerted to certain changes related to your personal information, which, if it turns out the activity is the work of a thief, will be your cue to look into loss prevention and credit disputes.