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Credit Karma Adds Credit Alerts

I’ve been a fan of Credit Karma [3] for as long as they’ve been around, met some of their people, and am generally very impressed with the service they offer. It’s been a cornerstone of my do-it-yourself identity theft protection system [4].

They recently emailed me to say they’ve developed a new feature that makes do it yourself identity theft protection even easier – they now actively report credit alerts.

A credit alert is basically any change to credit report and it includes (they only monitor your TransUnion credit report, the same report they use to generate their free credit score):

With my old system, I recommended that you pull your credit score once a month and use any large unexpected score changes as a reason to dig deeper. It was an informal secondary alert. The idea was that a new credit inquiry would ding your score and if you weren’t expecting it, this would give you a good reason to pull your credit report.

This is one step better because it pushes an alert to you on a variety of changes, not just ones that affect your score (such as new employment, new address). It’s often these changes, the ones that don’t affect score, that are the scariest. A random new address and new place of employment screams identity theft.

They’ve opened up a test and given us 300 invitations, which I suspect will go pretty quickly. Eventually everyone will get them eventually but for now, it’s limited to a small test set. You can join the test group by clicking here. [5]

This service, as well as Credit Karma in general, is completely free.