Identity Theft Victim
Welcome to the identity theft victim solutions page. You may be a victim of a specific identity crime such as financial fraud, health identity theft and medical fraud, employment identity theft, driver's license theft and criminal acts committed in your name. You may have received bills for a credit card you don't even own or hospital bills for an amputated leg but you still have both of your legs. In some cases, people are even arrested for financial fraud and murder because after thieves emptied their credit accounts, they used victim's identity to commit a murder. These can happen to anyone, and more than once, due to the theft of a driver's license, social security number, and other personal information. At the bottom of this page, you will find specific identity theft victim related articles, however, here's a quick list of items you need to consider if you are a victim of identity theft:
1- Have a plan of action before you do any thing. Think your actions through before taking the first step to defend yourself and make your case. Some mistakes may be hard to recover from and have lasting affects on your records, life and family. Your action plan will help you organize and ensure completeness of your action steps. More on fraud action plan here.
2- Learn about your rights under consumer protection laws and how to get free annual copies of your credit reports from all 3 credit reporting agencies. Download your credit reports and review them for accuracy. Read this article for more information about free credit reports.
3- Review all 3 credit reports you obtained from the 3 agencies to make sure nothing else is impacted as a result of your identity theft. It's important to assess the extent of the damage upfront so that you can take the necessary steps to stop and correct the issue. If you discover your credit reports include unauthorized records, work with the credit agencies and reporting companies to clear the unauthorized transactions.
4- Contact any of the 3 consumer reporting companies and tell them you are an identity theft victim and ask them to place a fraud alert on your credit report. The agency you contact will notify the other agencies and ask them to also place a fraud alert on their reports. By placing a fraud alert, all creditors are required to contact you for confirmation and approval for opening new accounts or making changes to the existing ones. Also, make sure you go over the unauthorized transactions with them and help them start their investigation. Here is the contact information for all 3 companies:
5- Notify the creditors of the fraud case at issue immediately such as the credit card company and ask to close your account(s) and inform them that you are an identity theft victim and the charges were not authorized by you. Usually, consumers are not liable for unauthorized credit card charges over $50 if disputed timely. However, identity theft victims may be liable for other identity frauds such as ATM withdrawals. Learn how to construct a dispute letter.
6- File an identity theft police report to claim you are an identity theft victim and a crime was committed against you. This is a very important step and may be the basis for all of your other actions to claim innocence and make a case for your defense. Learn why you need to file a report.
7- File a complaint report with the
Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
This is also important because the Federal Trade Commission has responsibility for fighting this crime and the more they know about identity theft cases and trends, better they can protect us. So, please share your case with the agency and contribute to the fight against identity criminals.
Learn about FTC's background, role and its investigation process.
8- Document your identity fraud case to include all the facts related to your identity theft. Such document will help you organize the facts and gather evidence or witnesses if any before presenting your identity theft victim case and innocence to the authorities or the affected companies and agencies. The identity theft affidavit was created by the FTC and other groups to help an identity theft victim document his or her case.
Get organized and take notes of your daily activities in this matter. Write down who you talk to, date, time and location of those conversations, the details of the conversations, and the conclusion of your discussions, in other words what will be the next steps and who will be doing what by when.
9- Take the identity theft victim vulnerability test and find out where you stand in the identity theft risk profile matrix. Discover how safe you are by taking this test. If you score high, you need to correct certain things and take certain actions to reduce your risk.
10- Study the Identity KAOS™ principles and apply the security tips described in the ID theft prevention section. The Identity KAOS™ principles will make you more aware of the way you identify, organize, manage and secure your personal information.
Watch a Short FTC Video
Identity Theft Victim Articles
Dealing With Debt Collectors Dealing with debt collectors properly is an important part of the identity theft recovery process. Consumers have certain rights and debt collectors have some obligations.
Stolen Mail If you become a victim of stolen mail, it is important to take certain measures to prevent further damage which can be caused from the theft of your mail.
Credit Card Fraud Victim If this is the first time that you have become a credit card fraud victim, you may not know what steps to take to contain the damage and this article is written just for you.
Replace Social Security Card There are times when you must replace social security card especially when you discover someone else is using your card for credit and employment purposes or if you lost the card.
Stolen Social Security Number A stolen Social Security Number (SSN) can be used to commit identity fraud. Find out how you can detect signs of stolen SSN, and what you can do to prevent, detect and resolve the SSN theft.
My Identity Theft Victim Story Once I became a victim of identity theft which I have briefly described our case here.
Be identity safe