Identity Theft Quick Response Action Plan
You just learned that you have been hacked and your identity has been stolen. Someone has opened credit cards in your name and other accounts. What do you do? Time is of the essence and you must act immediately to mitigate the damage to your credit. This guide gives the steps you need to protect
Call the PoliceContact law enforcement immediately and request that they make a report of the identity theft. Contact the police or sheriff's department in the jurisdiction where you reside. The report will be required for the banks where accounts were opened, the credit reporting agencies and other purposes.
Call the Credit Reporting AgenciesCall all three credit reporting agencies immediately to report that you have been a victim of identity theft.
Experian: 1-888-EXPERIAN (397-3742)
Ensure that you speak with a representative that confirms your report of identity theft. In making this report the credit reporting agency will provide you with a copy of your credit report to determine which accounts are a product of the fraud. You may be given choices by the credit reporting agency of a credit freeze, fraud alert or credit lock. It is advisable to pick a freeze as that affords you the most protection as the outset. To put a freeze on your account online, go to:
Get a Copy of Your Credit ReportYou need to get real time information on the damage to your credit. Visit Annual Credit Report.com (https://www.annualcreditreport.com) and pull your current credit report to see what accounts have been opened up in your name. You will be able to obtain a copy of your credit report the same day.
Report the Identity Theft to the FTCNext, go to the Federal Trade Commission's website https://www.identitytheft.gov/ and report the identity theft.
Check your Social Security NumberFinally, check to see if anyone else is using your social security number www.ssa.gov/myaccount. If you see fraudulent use of your social security number, then call the Social Security Administration's fraud hotline at 800-269-0271.