Identity Theft

Colton Persha

Definition

Identity theft is the fraudulent acquisition and use of a person's private identifying information, usually for a financial gain.
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Prevention

You can do many things to help prevent yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft. Thief's will look through your garbage looking for personal information, so be sure to shred all important document. Make sure you don't have personal information in your wallet, such as your social security number or you PIN, in case someone steals your wallet. Also check you credit report annually through Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion to be sure that your credit score is where it should be. Make sure that you are care full when you hand out your personal information. Don't respond to emails, text, or phone calls that ask for personal information, Legitimate companies won't ask for information this way. Finally, make sure that your passwords are unique to you. Create them using mixed numbers, letters, and characters, and don't use the same password for more than one account.
How Identity Theft Scams Work

Detection

You can detect identity theft by doing many things. Check your bank statements and credit card statements for mistakes or transactions that you didn't make. Watch to see if regular bills and statements are arriving late, meanwhile looking out for bills or collection notices for a product that you never purchased or received. Lastly if you are turned down for a loan or job because of your credit score.
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What to do when your Identity is stolen...

1) Flag your credit reports. Call all of the three credit reporting companies, and ask for a fraud alert on your credit report. This makes it difficult for the thief to continue to use your name to make purchases.

2) Order your credit reports. Each companies credit report about you is a little different. When you order, you have to answer some questions to prove your identity. If you see mistakes or signs of fraud, contact the credit reporting company.

3)Create a Identity theft report. An Identity Theft Report can help you get fraudulent information removed from your credit cards. It will also stop a company from collecting debts cause ny identity theft. Lastly, you can get more information about the accounts a thief opened in your name.