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What To Do if Your Identity Has Been Compromised

August 12, 2007

Thieves can get your personal information in many ways. Security breaches, phishing, stolen wallet, dumpster diving, hacking into your computer…

If you think someone may have gotten your personal information, you MUST act quickly to protect yourself. That means – do it now.

Place a Fraud Alert on your credit report. It will last for 90 days. You can call one of the credit reporting agencies and they will contact the other two. However, I suggest you personally call all three of them to be sure it’s done immediately.

Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
Experian: 1-888-EXPERIAN (397-3742)
TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289

Get your credit report. You can get a free credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com – 1-877-332-8228. You’re entitled to one free report from each credit reporting agencies every year. Just get one right now. Next month, get one from another company. If everything is still ok at this point, wait 90 days to order your third free one.

If you find accounts you haven’t personally opened on your credit report, that means your identity has been stolen and you must take more steps to protect yourself. Find out what to do if your identity has been stolen.

 

Comments

7 Responses to “What To Do if Your Identity Has Been Compromised”

  1. Pamela on November 21st, 2010 11:37 pm

    my wallet got stolen. it had my ID and SS card in it! i dont know what to do. im scared of identity theft. i have already reported it to the police but i have no idea what else to do! i feel like im going to cry

  2. The Identity 'Protector' on January 10th, 2011 3:49 pm

    I hope you’ve placed the fraud alerts and have gotten your credit reports. Keep renewing the fraud alerts. They expire every 90 days.

    Please don’t carry your SS card anymore. You only need it when you’re applying for a job.

  3. bayaka on February 23rd, 2011 11:54 pm

    i want to know what to do if i got my social security card stolen? please help asap

  4. Gary on June 20th, 2012 6:59 pm

    My wife and I are currently trying to purchase a new home. We made contact with a reputable lending institution in Texas and began the loan process, which involved a tremendous amount of paperwork. Needless to say we had to provied them with virtually every bit of confidential information one can think of on our identity, i.e. copies of dirver’s license, social security card, bank statements, income tax returns, etc.

    Guess what, the representative of the lending institution we provided this information to lost it, and now another representative of the lending institution, that is the loan processor, is requesting we provide the same information again to her.

    At this juncture we don’t yet know if our identity has been compromised of not. What should we do?

  5. cjbluz06 on June 20th, 2012 8:20 pm

    That’s a situation that could be nothing to worry about to full blown bad. I personally just went through the new home purchase and am very aware of all the sensitive personal information you have to provide.

    I have memberships with Identity Guard and LifeLock – both. I had alerts in real time every time my credit was checked – and the bank checked it several times during the process. It would have also alerted me if any changes or additions were made.

    It’s really up to you to decide if you want to take the chance that the lost information is truly lost and not compromised. At the very least, it would be good to check your credit reports at regular intervals for the next few months. The lending institution that lost your info should be responsible for the cost of whatever you choose to do. I wish you my best!

  6. Eman on August 21st, 2012 8:32 pm

    I live outside the US now and I tried to check my credit reports, but was surprised that “It is is only accessible through ISPs (Internet Service Providers) located within the United States and its territories) and the 800 # doesn’t work from outside the state. What should I do??

  7. John Rundle on December 22nd, 2012 8:41 am

    Was working on buying a dog. They asked for my name and address which I gave for shipping. When the shipping company contacted me they had a cameroon number so I stopped the transaction. I did not give any account info or my SS# I am reporting this to hotlines you listed above. How much risk am I at

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