Identity theft crimes are not new, but they have become more pervasive in the past decade. One of the most insidious forms of white-collar crime, identity theft is a federal offense under the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act. It occurs when someone deliberately assumes your personal identity to impersonate you in a legal sense. There are people out there who are malicious and want to mess your life simply because they can. Businesses and financial institutions that lose $52.6 billion each year are under tremendous pressure from consumers to tackle this problem.
Last year, identity fraud crimes topped the list of complaints reported to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the leading governmental agency offering identity theft help, for the fourth consecutive year. The FTC collects complaints about identity theft from consumers who have been victimized. Although the FTC does not have the authority to bring criminal cases, it can offer identity theft help by providing information to assist the victims in resolving the financial and other problems that can result from this crime. As additional identity theft help, the FTC also refers victims complaints to other appropriate government agencies and private organizations for further action. The support of these knowledgeable resources expedites recovery, while enhancing your peace-of-mind.
Accurate and up-to-date information is the most critical element to minimize risk. For this reason, Federal Trade Commission recently launched an identity theft help web site called annualcreditreport where all consumers are eligible for a free copy of their credit reports. In order to effectively respond to suspected ID fraud you should place an identity theft alert in one of the three consumer reporting agencies and that agency will notify the other remaining two. These agencies are: Equifax at 1-800-525-6285, TransUnion at 1-800-397-3742 and Experian at 1-800-680-7289. These credit reporting agencies can also be found online.
The ID Theft Clearinghouse managed by the FTC is a tool designed to coordinate law enforcement efforts in the United States. But, in the end, local law enforcement agencies like the police and district attorney end up dealing with most identity fraud cases. If you have been a victim of identity fraud, it's these local agencies that will mostly likely offer identity theft help.
It would also be a good idea to study some of the different methods of identity theft so that you can effectively combat them. Do things like shredding your important documents with any account information or identifying information.
There are currently no comments on this post. Be the first one!