wants to keep your
DIGI TAL VISION/JUPI TER IMAGES
CC: If I know I have a good credit score
and I always shred my financial documents,
why would I need to use this service?
MS: A credit score is a window into your
financial life. Banks, potential employers, life-insurance companies and utility companies
pull your credit score to evaluate your credit-worthiness. A low score could mean significantly higher interest rates and more money
spent on a product or service for one customer, while a customer with a high credit
score would pay significantly less.
Many things can impact a credit score,
including late payments, high credit
accounts, erroneously recorded accounts or
activity, and derogatory accounts. It is for
this reason that it is important to monitor
credit scores based on data from all three
credit-reporting bureaus [Equifax, Experian,
and TransUnion]. Credit scores are an
important part of all of our services, including Costco’s I;;;;;;; G;;;; service.
Through monthly or quarterly updates, it is
easy to track changes to your credit score.
But our service goes
beyond credit scores, and
consumers should be vigilant
about protecting their entire
identity online, through public records and when using
their mobile devices.
By T. Foster Jones
INTERSECTIONS INC., THE company
that provides I;;;;;;; G;;;;®, the ID protection program offered by Costco, recently
added enhancements to the program. The
Connection contacted Intersections CEO
Michael Stanfield for a brief Q&A about
I;;;;;;; G;;;;, Costco and the ongoing
need for ID protection.
The Costco Connection: We noted
in our October 2010 Update section the
recent addition of new features to the service
available to Costco members. What made
those necessary? Could you explain how
those new features work?
Michael Stanfield: We are living in
the digital age, where our identities are
shared with friends through social networking, our financial assets are conveniently
accessible online through our trusted financial institutions and instantaneous transactions are made, all to give us immediate
gratification. The conveniences of online
transactions also pose great risks if we do not
take precautionary steps to protect ourselves
For more information about the IDENTITY
GUARD program, visit Costco.com and search
from opportunistic fraud-sters. The new services added
to Costco’s I;;;;;;; G;;;;
product help reduce the risk
of identity theft.
■ ID Risk Assessment®
will analyze your vulnerability
to identity theft using innovative advanced technology that
determines your risk level.
■ ZoneAlarm® protects
your computer and all stored
information from damaging viruses, spyware
■ ID Vault® gives you one-click, secure
log-in access to your accounts—plus auto-form fill-in of your credit-card information—for extra protection when you shop or
■ M;;;;; L;;;;;;® gives you access to
personal financial information and critical
documents in a secure online location from
your PC or mobile device, and receives alerts
for changes to your financial account or
■ Lost Wallet offers immediate customized support to help those who report
lost and stolen cards. We help notify creditors and develop an action plan so you can
act quickly should an identity thief use your
CC: There are many providers of identity-theft solutions—why Intersections?
What is better or unique
about the company?
MS: There are many
providers of identity-theft
solutions, but few can provide a comprehensive solution that can address today’s
threats and be supported
with meaningful, exemplary
Intersections has been in the identity-theft prevention business for more than 14
years and has been the engine behind the
financial industry’s private-label identity-theft protection programs. We are a cus-tomer-centric company, and we want our
customers to use our product and to understand how each feature works.
Our solutions help protect consumers
from online threats, keep them aware of their
credit and public information profiles and
potential threats, and provide them with
identity-recovery services in the event of an
With millions of consumers being victims of identity theft each year, it is important
that consumers have someone they can turn
to and trust to help guide them along the
path to recovery. C