Help Desk FAQ

Identity theft

 

What can I do if someone is using my personal information to obtain or use credit in my name?

If you discover that you are a victim of ID theft, take these steps to obtain proof of the crime and limit the damage:

1) Document the crime. File a report with your local police department and get a copy. Also contact appropriate state and federal law enforcement agencies (sheriff, state troopers, state attorney general, the FBI, the U.S. Secret Service, the FTC or the U.S. Postal Inspection Service).

2) Download a free ID Theft Affidavit from the FTC and fill it out. This often is accepted when in lieu of or in addition to a police report.

3) Request your free annual credit reports. Review your reports closely for listings by companies you don’t do business with, accounts you didn’t open and debts you don’t recognize. Follow the instructions that came with the report to dispute fraudulent accounts. 

4) Contact creditors to close accounts opened without your knowledge and/or dispute fraudulent transactions on your existing accounts. Create new personal identification numbers (PINs) and passwords for your accounts. Ask the credit issuer for a letter confirming that the disputed account has been closed and/or fraudulent transactions erased.

5) Use fraud alerts or a credit freeze. Put a free fraud alert or credit freeze on your credit reports to help stop ID thieves from opening accounts. Choose an initial alert, which, as of Sept. 21, 2018, stays on your credit report for one year, or an extended alert, effective for seven years. With a fraud alert, your identity must be verified before new credit can be issued. With a credit freeze, your credit report cannot be accessed unless you "lift" the freeze.


 

 
 
 
 

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