What are the steps I should take after having been the victim of identity theft?
Please read the whole post if you think you have advice. I'm pretty far in the process but the load of fraud committed is spiraling out of my control to handle it. I lost my wallet about 3 and a half weeks ago. Immediately I canceled the debit card that was in there for one checking account and closed another checking account that was associated with a brand new book of checks in the wallet. The thing I didn't do and should have (among many) was closed the checking account that was associated with the debit card. I didn't because they couldn't use the debit card if it was found since I canceled it. I also didn't put stop payments on the checks in the checkbook (for the other account) because for some reason I didn't know which numbers they were. I just closed the account. I now know the numbers but it's too late since the account has been closed for so long. However, what was in my wallet is mind-blowingly horrendous to think about: I had my driver's license, the debit card, checkbook, social security card, a card with the checking account number associated with the debit card, a blank check my mom had given me about a year ago that I foolishly never voided or shredded, my voter ID card, health insurance cards from expired insurance plan, my AAA card, etc., etc. Basically every last thing they needed to become me. The first thing they did was figure out the checking account number associated with the debit card and went to that bank and wrote themselves a check into that account from the checkbook of the other checking account that I had closed. So that was the first $200. This person must look an awful lot like me to be posing as me and I got the check image in the mail that showed the forged signature which they did a pretty good job of. So that was the first thing which I attended to immediately and am in the process of filling out an affidavit to be notarized to get that expunged so it's not the biggest hassle ever. There was only $12 in that checking account which is why I didn't bother to close it (dumb) but I got that back after talking to the bank. Then the retail returned checks started coming in. Steadily at first and I was on top of them calling and making sure I knew what I needed to do. I could keep everything straight in my head and on paper and was making every plan to remedy the situation with affidavits and everything. Before I go on, I didn't file an immediate police report. Honestly, I did not in a million years think this would happen and it really didn't occur to me. However, after having talked to all these retailers (well, check processors or whatever), I've come to the conclusion that it's imperative. So I have a case number for the wallet and a case number for the checks, but I know I'm going to have to get them more info. I was waiting for all these check processors to send me the check images in the mail so I could show the police but everybody urges me to just file the report right away as the retailers might have video of this person that they may get rid of soon. So tomorrow, first thing in the morning I'm calling the white collar crimes division of the PD to talk to the detective assigned to my cases. What I also did was contact Transunion very early on to notify them of possible fraud. This was just an alert as I didn't know that I would actually become a victim. So they are aware and today I enrolled in ID Theft Protection Insurance with Zander to make sure I'm okay in the future. The problem now is that there are too many forged, returned checks for me to keep straight and I have no idea how to go about getting all this straightened out. There is a mound of paperwork for me to fill out for each returned check and I'm completely lost at this point. It's spiraled totally out of my control. The question is this: What do I do now? Hire a lawyer? Can somebody professionally help me sort through all of the fraud I have on my plate? I am at a breaking point where I'm about to have a nervous breakdown. I spent 2/3 of this day crying and not getting my work done because this situation is so daunting. Any professional advice is so greatly appreciated. I know I didn't fill in all the details so I'll update this if I think of any.
Asked By: Ashley - 12/14/2009
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
For peace of mind, put your name on fraud alert through Trans Union Fraud Dept. Their toll free # 1-800-680-7289. They'll notify the other 2 bureaus and must be renewed every 90 days in order to keep it active. As long as you notified the companies in question, you did your part. Just remember never to carry your... More
Answered By: stan c - 12/15/2009
Additional Answers (2)
you need to wear a disguise from here on out, because if there's someone out there using your identity to commit crimes then when people see you they'll think you're the one committing the crimes, and it'll be this whole big thing, and it's better just to avoid it.
Answered By: jesus lover - 12/14/2009
No advice, but i hope you can sort this out.
Answered By: Trevor - 12/14/2009
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