Identity Theft - What to Do If You Are a Victim
Every year, millions of people will end up having their identity stolen around the world. Being a victim of identity theft can be a life changing in every way, especially since many people are left with not knowing what it is that they are supposed to do. The best thing that you can is to learn all that you can about identity theft before it happens, so you can be smarter and on guard.
Even though you might have done that already, there is still a chance that you could become a victim. This is why you need to take things a step further and learn just what it is that you would have to do exactly should you find yourself in this position. Once you have realized that your identity has been stolen, you are going to want to contact the credit reporting agencies. However, do not just contact one of them; you are going to need to contact all of them. When you do this, you are going to have them place a fraud alert, where all creditors can see, on your credit report. The two main credit reporting agencies are Transunion and Equifax.
The next thing you are going to want to do is to contact the proper government departments to inform them like Service Canada to report your social insurance number as well as your health card. You would also want to contact your credit card companies as well as your bank. Next, you will need to contact the police and file a police report. Now, this is not a life or death emergency, so you will not want to call 911. Simply call your local police department or stop in.
While this might be a little stressful and time consuming, you are going to have to make sure that you go through all of your accounts online, including everything from your online banking to your emails. Do not forget to change the passwords of your online credit card accounts and even your social networking sites.
Go through all of your debit cards, credit cards and bank accounts. If you have had your bank account tampered with, close the account immediately complete with a new debit card. If your wallet was stolen or your house broken into, you may need a replacement drivers license.
You should always write your credit card numbers down as well as anything else like health card, social insurance number, and passport and store them in a safe place. There are also precautions you can take while online. You may want to limit the information you give out over the internet. There are many banks and companies that are giving out Visa debit cards or prepaid cards that can be used online. You should always make sure when you do give out information online, that it is a company or organization you wouldnt hesitate to give info verbally and that there is a purpose for their request. Lastly, always make sure the website is secure before you input your information and change your passwords regularly.
As you can see, there is a lot that has to be tended to when it comes to dealing with identity theft, but it is all extremely important. You do not want to miss a step. Therefore, the moment you know that you have been a victim of identity theft, you have to get started getting everything protected and watch all your accounts closely.