What to do if your identity is stolen
Posted in: Credit Monitoring
Finding new debt under your name that you didn’t actually create is a scary experience. But once you have found that you are a victim of identity theft, there is no time to be stunned. Instead, you must act immediately to control the situation and limit the damages.
Here are a few steps that the Federal Trade Commission suggests you take:
- Look at your credit reports and place a fraud alert on them: Find out how many accounts have been opened without your authorization and place a fraud alert on your reports so that no more accounts can be opened.
- Place a fraud alert on your existing credit cards: This would be done only on those accounts that you actually opened. Call the companies and let them know you have been a victim of identity theft.
- Close the unauthorized accounts: Be sure to speak with the fraud department for every company you have an account with so that they understand exactly why you want the account closed. This will keep them from reopening them.
- File a complaint with the police and file another with the Federal Trade Commission: Identity theft is a crime and you should file a police report as soon as possible so that the local and federal authorities can start to look into it.
See also: How to deal with identity theft
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