Identity Theft – How to protect and defend yourself

Identity Theft – How to avoid and what you can do if your identity is stolen

For years, identity theft has been the biggest problem consumers have faced. It takes the form of fraudulent income tax returns, phishing scams, stolen credit and debit card numbers and fraudulent unemployment claims in the name of someone who is not unemployed. Tuesday’s tips should help you learn how to play both offense and defense. And we will walk you through how to freeze your credit files step-by-step. Consumer Watchdog Associate Grace Brombach even provides her first-person account of freezing her credit files for the first time.

This is day 2 of MASSPIRG’s Consumer Protection Week.

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Deirdre Cummings

Legislative Director, MASSPIRG

Deirdre runs MASSPIRG’s public health, consumer protection and tax and budget programs. Deirdre has led campaigns to improve public records law and require all state spending to be transparent and available on an easy-to-use website, close $400 million in corporate tax loopholes, protect the state’s retail sales laws to reduce overcharges and preserve price disclosures, reduce costs of health insurance and prescription drugs, and more. Deirdre also oversees a Consumer Action Center in Weymouth, Mass., which has mediated 17,000 complaints and returned $4 million to Massachusetts consumers since 1989. Deirdre currently resides in Maynard, Mass., with her family. Over the years she has visited all but one of the state's 351 towns — Gosnold.

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