By: Robert J. Nahoum
Identity theft is a serious crime that can have a devastating impact on your financial and personal life. If you think you may be a victim of identity theft, it is important to take action immediately to protect yourself.
Here are some steps you can take if you are the victim of identity theft:
- Place a fraud alert on your credit reports. A fraud alert is a free service that tells creditors to take extra steps to verify your identity before opening a new account in your name. You can place a fraud alert by contacting each of the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
- Review your credit reports for any unauthorized activity. Once you have placed a fraud alert, you should request a copy of your credit reports from each of the three major credit bureaus. Review your reports carefully for any unauthorized accounts or activity. If you find anything suspicious, report it to the credit bureau immediately.
- Contact your creditors and financial institutions. Once you have reviewed your credit reports, you should contact your creditors and financial institutions to let them know that you may have been a victim of identity theft. Ask them to review your accounts for any unauthorized activity and to place a fraud alert on your accounts.
- File a police report. You should also file a police report if you believe you have been a victim of identity theft. This will help you to document the crime and may be helpful if you need to file a lawsuit later on.
- Monitor your credit reports and accounts for at least 12 months. Even after you have taken steps to protect yourself, it is important to monitor your credit reports and accounts for at least 12 months. This will help you to catch any unauthorized activity early on.
If you have been the victim of identity theft, it is important to take action immediately to protect yourself. By following the steps above, you can help to minimize the damage and recover from this crime.
Here are some additional tips to help you protect yourself from identity theft:
- Be careful about what information you share online. Do not share your Social Security number, date of birth, or other personal information online unless you are sure that the website is secure.
- Use strong passwords and change them regularly. Do not use the same password for multiple accounts.
- Be careful about what emails you open and click on. Do not open emails from senders you do not know or click on links in emails unless you are sure they are safe.
- Install a security software program on your computer and keep it up to date. A security software program can help to protect your computer from viruses and other malware that can be used to steal your personal information.
- Be aware of phishing scams. Phishing scams are emails that look like they are from a legitimate company, but they are actually from scammers who are trying to steal your personal information. Do not click on links in phishing emails or reply to them.
- Shred any documents that contain your personal information before you throw them away. This will help to prevent identity thieves from getting their hands on your personal information.
By following these tips, you can help to protect yourself from identity theft.
If you have been the victim of identity theft or if you need help settling or defending a debt collection law suit, stopping harassing debt collectors or suing a debt collector, contact us today to see what we can do for you. With office located in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Rockland County, the Law Offices of Robert J. Nahoum defends consumers in debt collection cases throughout the Tristate area including New Jersey.