WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE A VICTIM OF IDENTITY THEFT?

 If  you find you are a victim of identity theft, there are a number of  things you should do to reclaim your accounts and repair any damage to  your credit.

  • Close the accounts that have been tampered with or opened fraudulently
  • File  a police report with your local law enforcement agency that has  jurisdiction over your actual residence or place of business

Contact the three national credit reporting organizations, Equifax, Experianand TransUnion

  • Place  a fraud alert on your name and place a  "Fraud Alert / Victim Impact"  statement on your credit file that prompts creditors call you before  opening any new accounts


  • If your Social Security Number was used to obtain credit, contact the Social Security Fraud Hotline: (800) 269 - 0271
  • If your mail has been stolen or tampered with, contact the U.S. Postal Inspector: (800) 275 - 8777
  • Contact your financial institutions to report and request new account/card numbers
  • Contact the Identity Theft Resource Center(888) 400 - 5530 for free assistance 
  • Ask  your banks to flag your accounts and contact you to confirm any unusual  activity and change your PIN and password to a new one.
  • Contact the state office of the Department of Motor Vehicles, to see if another license was issued in your name;
    ​If so, request a new driver's license number and fill out the DMV's complaint form to begin the fraud investigation process

HOW TO PREVENT IDENTITY THEFT?

 

  • Preferably use a locked mailbox to send and receive mail
  • Deposit all outgoing mail to your local post office
  • Never give any personal information over the telephone or the internet, unless your the one has made the call.  
  • Memorize your Social Security Number and all passwords
  • ​Do not record sensitive information such as Social Security Number on anything that can be easily accessed and viewed. 
  • Track transactions to match and compare them to bank statements
  • Immediately report all lost or stolen credit/debit cards
  • Apply  for a new credit/debit card. If the card hasn't arrived in a timely  manner, report it to the bank or credit card company immediately
  • Monitor  expiration dates on your credit/debit cards; Contact the issuer if  replacement cards are not received prior to expiration dates
  • Do not carry your Social Security card with you
  • Never give your Social Security Number to anyone, unless within good reason for providing it
  • Shred documents containing any sensitive information