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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Lifelock's Settlement

If you watch more than five minutes of television, you've probably seen a Lifelock commercial advertising a sort of insurance against identity theft.

The commercial purports to protect you against all incidents of identity theft. According to a recent settlement with 34 states, the agreement states that this proclamation was largely fraudulent.

ttorney General Greg Zoeller has joined the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and 34 attorneys general today in announcing an agreement with identity protection provider LifeLock, Inc., that resolves an investigation into allegations of misleading advertising practices and will make $11 million available to customers in restitution. Letters will be mailed to eligible consumers, notifying them of the agreement and how they can opt-in to the settlement.

The FTC and states began jointly investigating LifeLock amid allegations that the company made a range of deceptive claims that misled people to believe its services were a “proven solution” that would protect against all forms of identity theft, including criminal, mortgage and child identity theft. The settlement also resolves allegations that the company misrepresented the nature of specific services it provided to protect or alert consumers when their personal information had been compromised.

In fact, Lifelock's protection put a fraud alert on any credit check but doesn't protect clients from any other form of identity theft that doesn't involve a credit check. Beyond that, any individual could put a fraud alert on their Social Security number for free.

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