Victoria Cottle

Victoria Cottle

Identity Theft hurts more than your Identity

Identity Theft hurts more than your Identity
The holidays have past and now you are receiving all the associated
bills that came with them. Now is when you want to take a closer look at your
credit card statements to make sure you were not charged for things you did not
buy. If creditors are calling you about debts, you did not create get as much
detail as possible from them before seeking help. The FTC or Federal Trade
Commission says watch for the signs of identity theft.
If you suspect fraud, here are some tips from the FTC that you can
complete immediately to help:
Order your credit
– Order your credit report from one of the three nationwide credit
reporting agencies. Review them carefully for errors or signs of fraud. You are
allowed one FREE report every 12 months. The three nationwide credit reporting
companies have set up a central website (,
a toll-free telephone number (1-877-322-8228),
and a mailing address through which you can order your free annual report (Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O.
Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281
). Do not contact the three nationwide
credit reporting companies individually. They are providing free annual credit
reports only through the website, phone number or by mailing a request.
Flag your credit
– Call anyone of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies
mentioned above and ask them to place a fraud alert on your credit report. The
agency you call is then responsible for alerting the other two, and the initial
alert is good for 90 days.
Create an identity
theft report
– File a complaint on the FTC website or by calling them
at 1-877-438-4338. The completed complaint is called an FTC affidavit. Take the
affidavit to the police department and file a police report. These two
aforementioned items comprise the identity theft report.
After completing the steps above, there are additional measures you can
take that may help the situation:
Contact the issuers
of your credit cards immediately
– Prompt notice may help limit your
Alert your bank(s) – If they have a
process in place to do so, consider putting a fraud alert on your accounts.
Take steps to repair
your credit
– The FTC provides tips and videos on
things you can do to try to repair your credit after you have been the victim
of fraud.
In the event that fraud is confirmed, programs such as Allstate’s
Identity Theft Expense Coverage may be able to assist you with guidance and
possible reimbursement of expenses. Regardless of whether you have this type of
protection, finding out you are the victim of fraud is likely to create anger,
frustration and worry. Being vigilant is a good way to help you fight theft. Most
everyone has online access to their accounts and transactions today happen
within minutes or hours compared to days just 5 years ago.
These are just a few of the events for February. For notice
on events by day LIKE our Facebook page @VictoriaCottlesCorner.

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