Identity theft is a crime in which the imposter obtains key pieces of information such as Social Security and driver’s license numbers and uses them for his or her own gain. Victims are left with a tainted reputation and the complicated task of restoring their good names.
Tips to Protect your Information
- Guard your social security number
- Remove mail promptly from mailbox
- Protect your receipts
- Guard personal information
- Shred personal information
- Review credit report
- Secure all PIN numbers and Passwords
The Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) enacted to protect consumers, was recently updated to include the right to a Free credit report every twelve months from any of the three national credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax or TransUnion). If you obtain a free report in May 15th of 2014, you would be eligible for another free report in May 15 of 2015.
HOW CAN I TELL IF I’M A VICTIM?
Monitor the balances of your financial accounts Look for unexplained charges or withdrawals Other indications could be: failing to receive bills or other mail signaling an address change by the thief; receiving credit cards for which you did not apply; denial of credit for no apparent reason; or receiving calls from debt collectors or companies about merchandise or services you didn’t buy.