More consumers springing for credit card security features

In recent years, many consumers have taken to investing in some of the extra services offered by credit card lenders to help protect their accounts in case they run into financial problems.

A recent study by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners estimated that consumers paid an average of $3.2 billion in premiums for credit insurance — money covered by a lender when borrowers cannot pay their bills as a result of injury, job loss or similar drops in income — between 2001 and 2010, but that the amount is on the rise, according to a report from the Associated Press.

However, the NAIC also estimates that the claims paid on these accounts totaled just $1.4 billion per year in that time, a loss of less than 44 percent, the report said. By comparison, insurance companies selling life, property and casualty insurance typically have loss ratios approaching 80 percent.

Consumers trying to protect their credit rating by avoiding delinquencies in the event of income loss may also want to consider the benefits of checking their credit reports with regularity. Doing so will help them to identify any unfair or inaccurate markings that may appear within their borrowing histories.