• By Thal Dixon

What to Do If Your Identity Is Stolen pt. 2

This article is a continuation from part 1.

There are many ways that someone can damage your life by breaking into your home, however, one of the most harrowing ways that can be more emotionally harmful than the initial theft is if they use their break in to steal your personal information and, thusly, identity. If you have a home break in, whether or not you know if they took any personal information, immediately change any account information that they might have gotten. However, if you don’t do this in time and your identity is stolen, there are steps you can take to minimize the damage. Here’s some steps to follow if your identity is stolen…

5. Report to the police

After you have everything else, it’s finally time to go to the police to file your report with them. In your report to them, include your FTC Affidavit, as well as your notes on any account activity that you believe was theft. Any evidence of identity theft that you have at this time should be given to them, as well. Also, government issued ID and proof of address will be required. Get a copy of the police report once you have submitted it. With the Affidavit and police report, you will be able to get further evidence by creating what is called an “Identity Theft Report”.

6. Contact companies where illegal purchases were made

Your Identity Theft Report gives you the ability, and the right, to counteract fraudulent activity. The person who stole your identity will have probably opened up new accounts at banks and with credit cards under your name. Showing your Identity Theft Report to these companies gives you the authority to have them close the account. Also ask them to send you a letter to confirm that you aren’t liable to charges made to this account, because it wasn’t yours, and that it won’t affect your credit. Save these letters so that you can build more of a case and combat damages to your credit.

7. Remove false charges from account

Now it’s time to go directly to where the fraud took place. Contact any businesses where false purchases were made. Tell them about the identity theft, and show them your Identity Theft Report to clarify. Show them all fraudulent charges on your account, and have the business remove them. Get a letter of confirmation that they removed them so that you can fight those charges if they show up on your credit report, still.

8. Write to the credit bureaus

Now it’s time to contact the credit bureaus, again. This time, you will need to contact all three of them: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Send over your Identity Theft Report, a government issued ID, and proof of address. Tell them which account activity is fraudulent and show them the proof from banks, credit companies, and general businesses that you’ve acquired. From here, you should be able to set your credit report straight, and be rid of this whole mess.