Take Quick Action to Limit Damage from Identity Theft

/ BY / Identity Theft

Your first indication that your identity has been stolen may come when you open a credit card bill and notice that there are several charges on it that you know you didn't make. When you dig a little deeper by obtaining one of the free annual credit reports that you're entitled to each year, you find that there have been a few more accounts opened in your name without your knowledge. What should you do? Act immediately! If you suspect that you’ve been a victim of identity theft, following the steps below (as suggested by the Federal Trade Commission, Sallie Mae and the Better Business Bureau) to help limit the damage: Notify your credit card company immediately. Look at the back of...

Beware of Thieves Who Steal Children’s Identities

/ BY / Identity Theft

Will your son or daughter be denied credit when they apply for a first credit card? It could happen. Identity thieves are targeting kids and using their information to obtain credit cards, loans, utility services and even rental housing. They can quickly run up thousands of dollars in fraudulent charges, leaving the child’s credit record in ruins. It’s a serious problem. According to ITAC—Identity Theft Research and Statistics—2.5 percent of U.S. households with children under 18 had some experience with child identity theft. And it’s not always a stranger who’s taking over the child’s identity. In ITAC’s survey, 27 percent of the respondents knew the person responsible for the crime...

Don't Fall for These Scams at Tax Time

/ BY / Identity Theft

Scams involving money carry a double whammy; you lose initially by whatever amount the scam artists get from you, and you can lose long term because thieves who get hold of your credit card numbers or other financial information can ruin your credit record and your credit score. According to the Internal Revenue Service, many of these thieves ramp up their activities at tax time. Here are some of the scams that they’ve identified: 1. Identity theft Someone who gains access to your personal information (name, address and Social Security Number, for example) may fraudulently file a tax return and claim a refund. The problem is so large that the IRS has 3,000 people working on identity...

What to Keep (and Not to Keep!) In Your Wallet

/ BY / Identity Theft

Wallets have been around for centuries. Initially designed to hold currency, they've evolved to store much more than just cash. Most of us keep everything from receipts to credit cards to IDs in our wallets. While it's a convenient place to store the things you need easy access to, a stuffed wallet is unorganized and also a treasure trove for identity thieves. If your wallet or purse ever gets stolen, what you keep in your wallet could end up costing you not only your money, but your very identity. This list will help you know what you can keep in your wallet and what to store in a safer place. What Not to Keep In Your Wallet There are certain things you should leave out of your...

Are You Putting Yourself At Risk For Identity Theft?

/ BY / Identity Theft

The negative impacts of identity theft are far-reaching—not only can it result in lost money, but it can be months before your credit report, accounts, and insurance returns to normal. However, many people may unknowingly be putting themselves at risk for identity theft. Thieves obtain personal information in ways you may not realize; in fact, most identity theft doesn’t come from stealing wallets or purses. Thieves are getting savvier every day, but these tips will help you keep your identity and your finances safe: Be careful using ATM machines. According to the US Secret Service, card skimming is the number one hacking-related form of identity theft. The thieves place devices...


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