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Signs That You May Be A Victim Of Identity Theft

Identity theft is a rampant and growing problem across the country. Despite financial institutions creating new and more advanced safeguards, identity thieves have stolen over $112 billion from consumers in the past six years. An estimated 13.1 million people were victims of identity theft in 2015—often, these individuals had no idea that their identity was compromised until they had lost a significant amount of money. In order to protect yourself, you should be aware of these signs that your identity may have been stolen.

Receiving Receipts for Purchases

If a thief has stolen your identity, he or she is likely using it to make purchases under your name. The thief may apply for new credit cards, open a charge card at a retail store, or even open a bank account. Sometimes, the thief will order products from a store or retailer and forget to change the saved address. As a result, you may begin receiving purchases, account statements, or receipts for items or products that you did not buy. If you receive such a statement, always call the company immediately and confirm that you did not open the account.

Missing Emails or Statements

Similarly, you may begin missing credit card account statements or bills. If a thief steals your identity, he or she may change the address or the email account associated with a credit card or bank account. Since you are not receiving your statements, you may not notice any unauthorized charges.

Being Denied Credit

If you had relatively good credit and were denied on an application for a credit card, home mortgage, or auto loan, it may be a sign that your identity has been compromised. Identity thieves rarely pay for the bills that they rack up in your name, and victims of identity theft often find that their credit scores have dropped dramatically due to numerous new open and overdue accounts.

Collections Calls

Likewise, you may begin receiving collections calls for accounts that you did not open. If a debt collector contacts you about an account you do not recognize, you should request that the debt collector send you a written statement of the account, including when it was opened and a transaction history.

Help for Victims

If you believe that you may be the victim of identity theft, you need to take action immediately. The faster you act, the less damage may be done to your credit.

The first thing you should do if you believe that you are the victim of identity theft is run your credit report and look for any unauthorized accounts. Contact the institutions that manage these accounts immediately and report that you are a victim of identity theft. Shut down any open accounts and cancel any open credit or debit cards. Next, change all of your passwords to every online account that you have, including your online banking password and your email password. You should also contact the three major credit bureaus and place a fraud alert on your credit report.

Finally, you should contact an experienced consumer rights attorney. The attorneys at a firm like Loan Lawyers can help you repair your credit and pursue the perpetrators of identity theft and other fraudulent actions. To schedule a free consultation and learn more about how Loan Lawyers can help you, contact our office today by calling (888) FIGHT-13 (344-4813).

  • ABC News
  • American Civil Liberties Union
  • CBS 4
  • CNN
  • Daily Business Review
  • Florida Trend's - Florida Legal Elite 2014
  • Florida Trend's - Florida Legal Elite 2014
  • National Association of Consumer Advocates
  • National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
  • NBC News
  • National Consumer Law Center
  • The New York Times
  • Avvo
  • Avvo
  • Avvo
  • Avvo
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