Identity Theft is the fastest growing crime in the nation! It is best defined as the illegal possession or use of your personal information to obtain credit, goods or services, work, benefits, access your existing accounts or even commit crimes using your name. If you are a victim of identity theft, follow the instructions below.
Once you discover you are the victim of identity theft, keep a written log of every phone call, copies of all correspondence and records of expenses associated with managing your identity theft case.
ID Theft Case Management Log - EXCEL
Supply the law enforcement agency with a copy of your completed ID Theft Affidavit and any supporting documentation you have collected. These documents will be included with your report and evaluated for follow-up by the reporting agency and/or forwarded the agency(s) where the crime(s) occurred. (California Penal Code section 530.6)
Obtain a copy of your police report. You will need to provide a copy of this report to each of the creditors and credit reporting bureaus when reporting the fraud.
Experian. P.O. Box 9532, Allen, TX 75013
www.experian.com or 1-888-397-3742.
TransUnion. P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92834-6790
www.transunion.com or 1-800-680-7289.
Equifax. P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30348
www.equifax.com or 1-800-525-6285.
The fraud alert will only remain in place for 90 days. Protect yourself by extending the fraud alert to 7 years. A 7 Year Fraud Alert Request must be done in writing and include a copy of your police report. (See template letter)
***A fraud alert is only as good as the creditor who sees it. You may also “Freeze” your credit files for free, which prevents a creditor from even viewing your credit history, so credit will not be granted without you personally lifting the “Freeze”. A credit freeze may be done in writing or online.
If your checks, ATM card or bank account information is lost or stolen:
Call the bank and close your bank account. Open a new account with a new account number. Tell the bank you want to use a new password for access to your new account.
Contact the major check verification companies listed below and ask them to notify retailers who use their databases not to accept checks on your closed account. (If you do not take this step retailers will accept the check then attempt to collect from you when the check is returned "Account closed".)
If you are wrongly accused of a crime committed by an identity thief:
There is a special database in the California Department of Justice that can help victims of "Criminal Identity Theft", which occurs when a suspect in a criminal investigation identifies themselves using the identity of another, innocent person.
When your child's identity is stolen:
Children are the fastest growing group of identity theft victims.
Identity Theft and the Deceased:
The deceased are frequently targets of identity theft.
'Active Duty' Alert Helps Protect Military Personnel from Identity Theft: