Consumer advocates: Alert service won't stop theft

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- A credit monitoring service offered to taxpayers after a massive security breach at South Carolina's tax collection agency will not prevent account fraud, nor will it alert victims to all types of identity theft.

The service will help victims discover more quickly when new credit accounts are fraudulently opened in their name. But consumer advocates say residents must be proactive, even after signing up for the Experian service.

Gov. Nikki Haley is urging all taxpayers to sign up for ProtectMyID, which provides daily monitoring of all three credit bureaus for the next year and lifetime advice in resolving identity theft after it happens.

Experian says the service normally costs $160 yearly. While taxpayers won't pay that for the year covered by the state, there are charges for other non-covered services.