Identity Theft and Credit Pt. 1

How well are you protecting your Identity?

Identity theft can be financially devastating if not dealt with quickly.

Looking at your credit reports regularly and setting up notifications is one surefire way to reveal identity theft in progress. The moment your credit report includes account information that is unexpected to you, you should investigate to thwart any attempt to steal your identity.

Look out for these warning signs as indicators of identification theft.

1. Unauthorized charges on existing accounts. While Many banks and credit corporations screen suspicious activity, you need to be the first line of defense when it comes to your personal finances. Any suspicious activity or unauthorized purchases need to be shared with your banking institutions at once.

2. Your credit report has an item that you can’t recall. Whenever there is a debt or an account that you do not recognize, you should look into it. Sometimes identification thieves will open accounts with names that you may not recognize or wouldn’t question because of the name. This happens often with medical bills. Be sure to look over your credit reviews and ask for a verification of anything that seems strange.

3. You’ve been contacted by debt collection agencies. If you get harassing calls about an account that you have no understanding of, you may be the victim of identity robbery. You would be surprised how many times a friend of the family or relative gets caught making purchases with information belonging to an elderly relative.

4. Weird Mail patterns. If unexpected credit approvals, a note that your mail is being forwarded, or statistics about credit cards and loans that you’ve never applied for start piling up in your mailbox , you may want to make sure that you aren’t being targeted by an identity thief.

At the end of the day, your credit report is your financial reputation. It’s never hurts to check the validity of an account when something feels off.

In Part 2. We will examine what to do when we Suspect that we’ve been a victim of Identity theft.

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