This Day On The Street
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Mistakes Plague Most Credit Reports

Evidence of fraud: If there is evidence of fraud on your reports -- accounts that you never opened or accounts with greater-than-expected balances -- contact the credit-reporting companies immediately to put a fraud alert on your report. Next, close the fraudulent accounts and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission using its online complaint form. Also consider filing a report with your local police department and make sure to keep a copy of the report for your records.

For more information on dealing with fraud and identity theft, check out the FTC's identity theft protection Web site here.
Peter McDougall is a freelance writer who lives in Freeport, Maine, with his wife and their dog.
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