Identity Theft: Report It Immediately !

by : Jay Delgado

The term Identity Theft refers to an illegal action of opening someones credit account statement without his/her permission, stealing vital information about an individual and then utilizing this information to view or use his credit account or make any transaction in his name. Identity theft may also be referred to as Identity Fraud.

With more and more people becoming technological savvy, it has become quite easy for a common criminal to steal the identities of other people. In fact this problem has spread at an alarming rate across the world. If you are one of the witnesses or the victims of an identity thief, do make an urgent report of it right away. This action of yours will surely save you from further losses.

In order to stop identity fraud or theft from happening to you, numerous safeguards or defensive plans have been put in place. These plans will work only up to a certain level but what is required in totality is the alertness on the part of consumer. While making an identity theft, a cheat usually accesses your SSN (social-security-number) as well as other significant details in order to facilitate an effective utilization of your identity.

Below are some of the steps that a person is recommended to adopt in order to reduce the risk of falling prey to the identity theft.

* Report the identity theft as soon as possible to the local police department in your area.

* Immediately contact the fraud department of your bank as well as those of your creditors.

* Make a theft report to the federal trade commission as well.

* Last but not least, report your identity theft to the three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Trans Union and Experian.

Notifying all the three credit bureaus as soon as possible is the most important step that a victim can take. The main reason behind this is the fact that the identity thief may try to obtain your credit by making use of the false identity. If you have reported to the credit bureaus about the theft and asked them to place a fraud alert on your credit report it should detour the thief. Along with this, try to get a copy of the credit report so as to determine the degree of un-lawful activity that has taken place using your identity. Besides this, a copy of the credit report statement can show other fraud activities or disputed actions carried out in your name.

Following is the sequence of steps followed by the credit bureaus upon report of the identity theft:

* Post the security alert on the credit report file.

* Drop the identity theft victim out of the various offers or pre- approved for credit issuance.

* Mail a copy of credit file to the victim of identity theft.

To summarize, we can say that identity theft can prove to be very critical for a victim of the theft. So, it is always recommended to follow all the precautionary measures to control it.