Identity theft can happen to anyone; that is why you should always monitor your bank statements and credit card reports. Whether it is an account you are always using or not, always take time to routinely check. Other than that, there are some possible signs that someone may have stolen your identity. Here are 9 clues pointing to identity theft:
- The number one sign would be discrepancies. Your bank statement reflects transactions or purchases you did NOT make. In addition, you see withdrawals from your account that you can’t seem to explain.
- Next, you receive calls from credit card companies about purchases you didn’t make. Debt collectors remind you to settle your account, but the debts are not yours.
- You receive a mail from the IRS telling you that there were more than one tax return under your name. It could also be that the IRS will inform you that you have received an income from an another employer.
- Another clue would be the inexplicable charges on your credit card statement. Most of the time, identity thieves start with something small. Let’s say $10 just to do a test transaction. If it pushes through, then, your card will work on bigger purchases. So, go through your statement of account and thoroughly check if there are charges you can’t explain on your credit card report.
- Medical providers charge you for services you did not receive. There are medical bills for a condition you do not have. When you are perfectly fine, then, you receive a bill for a medical treatment.
- You should be alarmed that you don’t get bills in the mail. Official communications are usually done through snail mail, and if you don’t get your bills, this could mean that someone has changed your mailing address.
- By the time when you really need medical attention, your health plan will reject your medical claim because the maximum limit has been already reached. Then, you will have a bad record. Your health insurance provider may not cover you.
- Companies, where you have an account, inform you to reset your password. For instance, Amazon emailed me once to change my password. Industry giants, like Amazon, are not vulnerable to attacks. They can also be compromised by a data breach.
- Lastly, when you are turned down for a loan, this could mean that someone damaged your good credit standing.
Report and do not remain silent!
If you have noticed these clues, then, someone has stolen your information. Hence, you should inform the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) about a possible identity theft. There are guidelines to follow if you lose your credit cards, driver’s license, social security, and other personal information.
What will happen to my personal information after identity theft?
It depends on what information the identity thieves have acquired, and they can get your data through a number of ways. Typically, identity thieves can profit from your data, including to the following examples:
- Open a new credit card under your name,
- Make online purchases using an existing cards,
- Claim a refund when filing a tax return under your name,
- Get medical assistance through your health insurance,
- Pass a background check using your identity and financial status.