Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the United States. Financial ID thieves steal key pieces of information, such as a Social Security number, credit card number, bank account number, or a driver's license number to open new accounts, and/or run up charges on existing accounts.
The harm to a victim's credit and daily life can be long lasting and devastating. However, by taking action now, you can radically reduce the risks and avoid the damage identity thieves can do to you.
If you suspect that you might be a victim of identity theft, act immediately. First, contact the fraud departments of each of the three major credit bureaus, then close all affected accounts:
Equifax: 1-800-525-6285Experian:1-888-397-3742TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289
Finally, report the crime to the local authorities and to the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-ID-THEFT (1-877-438-4338).
Other authorities you might want to contact in case of fraud:
For more information, visit the Federal Trade Commission's central ID Theft site.
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