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What are the Best Tips for Identity Theft Victims?

Nicole Madison
By
Updated May 17, 2024
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Identity theft victims often face challenges when it comes to putting an end to the thievery, repairing their credit, and having the criminal responsible for the theft prosecuted. One of the best tips for an identity theft victim is to report the theft quickly, which often involves contacting both creditors and credit bureaus. It may also prove helpful to notify the police and get them involved. Additionally, putting a security freeze on one's credit file may make it harder for the thief to continue his antics.

One of the best tips for identity theft victims is to act quickly to report the issue and protect their accounts. This means reporting the theft right away. For example, if a credit card is stolen, it is important for an individual to report it as soon as he notices it is missing. Likewise, if a person gets a bill for an account he didn’t open or an amount he didn't spend, he’ll usually need to inform the creditor as quickly as possible. This may help prevent the identity thief from doing further damage and limit the extent of the credit problems he is able to cause the victim.

Another tip for identity theft victims is to always contact the police. A victim of identity theft may focus on dealing with creditors and banking institutions to straighten out his affairs after identity theft, but getting the police involved may help as well. Notifying the police could lead to the prosecution of the identity thief, but it could also help the identity theft victim to avoid prosecution himself. For example, if an identity thief commits a crime while posing as the identity theft victim, the identity theft victim could face legal troubles. If the victim has reported the identity theft to the police, however, he may have an easier time proving that he is not the person involved in the criminal activity.

Identity theft victims may also benefit from placing security freezes on their credit reports. This tip involves contacting credit bureaus and asking them to restrict access to the victim’s credit file. A credit freeze makes it impossible for creditors to access the victim's credit report without this authorization, which may prevent an identity thief from opening new accounts and damaging the victim’s credit. If a credit card company, for example, cannot obtain credit information because of a security freeze, an identity thief will likely be denied the credit card he tries to open in the victim’s name.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison , Writer
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.

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Nicole Madison

Nicole Madison

Writer

Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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