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1 - What is Protective Registration?

The Cifas Protective Registration Service enables a person who is at greater risk of being, or already is, a victim of identity theft or identity fraud to place a protective warning on their credit file. Examples of risk include being a victim of crime or a data loss. Any organisation that uses Cifas data will see a Cifas Protective Registration filing and will take extra precautions to ensure that the application or account that prompted the search is genuine.


2 - How much does it cost?

The cost is £20 for two years.


3 - What will happen when I apply for credit or other services?

As a result of the entry organisations that share data through Cifas will undertake additional verification checks to ascertain that the applicant is genuine and not a fraudster trying to commit identity theft.


4 - Will the Protective Registration Service contact me when someone uses my details, or to check that it is me who is applying?

No. In the majority of cases the organisation who sees the Protective Registration warning will be able to determine whether the application is genuine through the extra verification checks they make. Occasionally it may be necessary for the organisation in question to contact you to confirm some personal information.


5 - Can signing up for Protective Registration adversely affect my credit rating?

No. Information shared through Cifas is not used to calculate creditworthiness - it is only used for the prevention and detection of fraud.


6 - Will Protective Registration affect credit/debit card transactions?

No. Cifas warnings are only used in the processing of new applications for products or services or the administration of existing accounts and services or insurance policies.


7 - Will Protective Registration cause delays to my own genuine applications?

The service works by prompting Cifas members to carry out extra checks to prove your identity to prevent further fraud. This can mean that genuine applications take slightly longer to process while checks are carried out. Please note that the service only covers applications for new products or loans – the service does not cover or cause delays with transactions, such as debit or credit card transactions.

8 - How long is the Registration for, and can I remove it?

The registration will remain for two years. You can request the removal of the Protective Registration at any time by writing to us. Otherwise your Protective Registration will expire and the warning flag removed from your name and personal details. 


9 - What if I move address or change telephone number - can I update my details?

Yes - please call to update your personal details.


10 - Does the Registration cover just me or all my family at my address?

Each person at an address who wishes to have Protective Registration must apply separately.


11 - Do I have to live at the address that I want to register?

Yes, generally speaking you must live at the address for which you wish to apply for Protective Registration. However, if you own a property in the UK, which you are not residing at but where your details have been compromised, you can register the address in question.  (This might be the case if you are working abroad and renting your UK residence out).


12 - What should I do if there is a problem with my post?

If you suspect that your mail is being stolen, or a mail redirection application has been made in your name without your knowledge, contact Royal Mail Customer Care on 08457 740 740 or www.royalmail.com.


13 - Can I take out Protective Registration for a deceased relative? 

Yes - please ring our call centre to discuss. We may request a copy of your relative's death certificate.


14 - How safe is my data?

We take the security of your data very seriously. Only trained staff within the organisations that share data through Cifas can access the data, and the database itself is hosted at a secure data centre. The secure data centre has industry standard security software to prevent unauthorised access to the data. Annual independent audits are undertaken to test the security and the facilities are ISO 27001 accredited.


15 - Where can I get further information on identity theft / fraud?

The Government and financial industries have jointly produced a guide to protecting your identity, available at www.identitytheft.org.uk. Copies of the leaflet may also be available at your local Citizens Advice Bureau, public library or police station. This website also contains a wealth of useful information. 


16 - Can I renew my Protective Registration to ensure continuous cover?

When you have lost valuable identity documents, or had your personal details compromised, the risk of your details being used by a fraudster is greater within the first few months of the loss. This is because the fraudster needs to obtain the maximum financial benefit from the documents, or data, in the shortest period of time before the fraud is detected and steps taken to protect the victim from any further fraudulent attempts using their details. It is during this period that the Protective Registration warning is of most value to the victim and any lender checking our database.

This means that those who are at a high risk of identity fraud are easily identified by participating organisations and any applications received are subject to additional security checks to confirm they are genuine. Continuing to have registrations in place after the risk of identity fraud has diminished reduces that value of the Protective Registration Service, as more and more applications would be subject to the same checks, therefore reducing the instant identification of those at greatest risk. This is why we do not routinely renew a Protective Registration after the initial registration period. If you feel you are still at risk from identity fraud you can contact us to renew for a further two years. Otherwise your Protective Registration will expire and the warning flag removed from your name and personal details.  Only those individuals who genuinely remain at risk should renew their registration.

Some individuals have told Cifas that they would like to use the Protective Registration Service as an 'insurance policy' against the threat of identity fraud. The service is not designed for this purpose and further information on how you can protect yourself from identity fraud can be found at www.identityfraud.org.uk


17 - My question about Protective Registration hasn't been answered/I need further assistance. 

Please call 0330 100 0180 to speak to our team.


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