Questions tagged [identity-theft]

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75
votes
9answers
14k views

Should I sign the back of my credit card?

When getting a new credit card, what is the policy in regards to signing the strip on the back? Should I sign it? Should I write "See ID"? Should I leave it blank? Should I sign it AND write "See ID"? ...
49
votes
7answers
18k views

Didn't apply for credit card but got an application denied letter?

I was recently forwarded a letter by the owner of my old address that turned out to be from a credit card company, informing me my application had been declined. Ignoring that this letter was sent to ...
34
votes
20answers
13k views

How to safely destroy (a large quantity of) valid checks?

A while ago I had my bank issue me new checks due to a change of name (I got married). However I still have many hundreds of checks with the out of date info (they're an online bank and issue about ...
32
votes
3answers
5k views

How do you file taxes earlier than an identity thief?

One of the recommendations to avoid tax return fraud/identity theft is to file your taxes as early as possible: FTC Smart Money Identity Theft Resource Center USA Today Notably, the IRS does not ...
30
votes
7answers
15k views

Private Bank requesting user name and password to verify identity before sending money to acct

I have been asked to provide my user name and password, so my fiance' can have his bank, Macoto, verify my identity, before they will send the funds. Does this sound right? I figure if he gives the ok,...
27
votes
4answers
11k views

My credit card was unexpectedly charged 1$, the merchant wants my SSN and personal data to tell me why, do I risk identity theft?

I received a phone message from my credit union's fraud detection department about a transaction for $1 that raised a flag. I called them back and was given the information recorded with the ...
26
votes
6answers
7k views

How do I permanently opt out of having a credit history?

In the past, I activated a credit block (freeze) on all major credit bureaus and from reading information, this should prevent anyone from being able to report on my credit or gain access to it. ...
22
votes
4answers
7k views

Do businesses save their customers' credit card information until the payment is finalized?

Paying by credit card is sometimes a multi-step process. In some of those cases, only the initial authorization is made at the point of sale; the finalized transactions are usually entered as a batch ...
20
votes
2answers
78k views

I gave a scammer my telephone number, address, and name. How bad is it?

Updated question because old one was embarassing: I saw a spam email from "PayPal" and I didn't realize that it was a phishing attempt. I gave the phishing site my name, telephone number, and email. ...
19
votes
4answers
5k views

If I have given my bank details to someone by email what should I do now? [duplicate]

I have given someone my bank account details including my home address and phone number by email, supposedly so that money can be transferred into my account. I am now quite sure this is a scam. ...
19
votes
5answers
701 views

What strategies could be employed so as to avoid identity theft and credit card frauds?

Other than getting a credit card with a minimal limit and using it exclusively for online purchases, what other strategies could be employed so as to avoid identity theft and credit card frauds?
16
votes
2answers
1k views

If the former owner of my home is still using the address, can it harm me?

My wife bought a condo in foreclosure a couple of years ago. We both live here and most weeks I get a couple of pieces of mail for the previous owners; who apparently ran a business here. Most of the ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there any dangers in publicly sharing my personal finance data?

I wanted to blog about my financial status and was curious if somebody ever did that and couldn't find anything on google. So the idea is to share on a monthly basis what I have on my bank account ...
14
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I freeze my credit?

If freezing your credit is a better way to protect your identity and the associated credit that goes along with it, how do I freeze my credit?
14
votes
1answer
434 views

How was someone able to open an account?

A while back I was surprised to see a collections account go onto my credit report for an unpaid amount of a few hundred dollars. I immediately believed it to be a mistake since I had never heard of ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

What happens if an identity thief files a fraudulent return for you, but you owe taxes?

For taxes this year I'm going to owe the IRS, not get a refund, and I won't have any W-2 (although my wife will). So I'm curious what would happen if someone used this Equifax breach to file my tax ...
13
votes
6answers
4k views

Do I need ID theft Insurance?

Identity theft insurance? Dave Ramsey says yes. Consumer reports (CR) says no. The complication is that Dave recommends an identity theft insurance from Zander Insurance, where as CR says to say no ...
12
votes
5answers
522 views

What should I be doing to protect myself from identity theft?

You see ads all over the place for services that purport to protect you from identity theft, but my gut tells me that most of these are at best marginally effective and at worst outright scams. Are ...
12
votes
4answers
819 views

How should I protect myself from the Equifax breach without making my own life much harder?

The FTC recommends those who may be impacted by the Equifax data breach do the following: Check credit reports at annualcreditreport.com. Enroll in the 1 year of free credit monitoring provided by ...
12
votes
1answer
302 views

Should I dispute fraudulent hard inquiries on my credit report?

A store credit card was opened fraudulently in my name, and I am going through the process of disputing and having it removed from credit reports. Within a few days of that account being opened, ...
9
votes
2answers
404 views

What can a customer do to reduce damage from a data breach?

A larger retailer admitted recently that hackers were able to steal credit and debit card data for about 40 million customers. Reports say that names, payment card numbers, expiration dates and ...
9
votes
1answer
273 views

If my identity is stolen, is there another way to authenticate identity to the major credit bureaus other than my credit history?

Supposedly, one is able to monitor their credit rating with the three major credit bureaus to prevent/stop identity theft. However, the yearly report can only be viewed by answering questions about ...
9
votes
1answer
149 views

Credit freeze and affect on perception as credit risk

In light of the Equifax hack I keep reading that people should apply a credit freeze on themselves at the 3 main bureaus. However, someone told me that their mortgage consultant said that placing a ...
8
votes
3answers
18k views

Credit Check -> someone took out a loan in my name -> what are the next steps

I've just been made aware that there are some items on my credit history that are not mine, the largest is for over $1000. I've never used a credit card or taken out a loan, so I can be sure they are ...
8
votes
3answers
620 views

I've started two credit agency disputes with the originators of the credit (CC company and a bank). Is there anything more required from me?

I found a CC that I had nothing to do with opening on my credit report. I called the issuing company and told them as much and they opened a dispute with the 3 agencies. Also, in an effort to increase ...
7
votes
4answers
354 views

What's the fuss about identity theft?

I know, people can steal your money, or can borrow money in your name, etc. But in the end you should be able to demonstrate that you didn't do that, right? What would worry me is somebody getting my ...
7
votes
2answers
282 views

Credit Freeze for Minor Child

I was told that identity theft of a minor's credit is a very sought after goal for thieves. Is it true that credit agencies will offer lines of credit to individuals who are not yet 18? Is there any ...
7
votes
2answers
329 views

Equifax class action settlement—opt-in or opt-out?

I'm trying to figure out whether it's better to include or exclude oneself from the Equifax class action settlement. I've been torn on the issue, for reasons I'll explain below. Note to readers: ...
7
votes
2answers
197 views

How to monitor for identity theft of minor child

It's important to monitor your own credit for signs of identity theft and for errors, because recovery can be time consuming and expensive. What steps should parents take to monitor their minor ...
6
votes
1answer
185 views

Identity theft?

I recently checked my credit report through 3 different sites and everything seemed OK. But recently I applied to finance a car and had to confirm 6-8 years of previous addresses. Two unknown ...
6
votes
1answer
458 views

Strange withdrawal from checking account

I got a notice that there was an ACH withdrawal yesterday from my checking account of $225.38 by OPENSKY PHONE PMT. I'd never heard of OpenSky before and I'm not sure what a "phone pmt" is. I called ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Credit freeze in UK

I've read a lot that in US people can protect themselves from identity theft by applying credit freeze on their credit history, is there similar option in UK?
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Stolen wallet containing check. What are the proper steps to take now?

My wallet was stolen. I cancelled all my cards, but I also had a check written to me that I hadn't deposited yet. I have contacted the issuer of the check and asked him to cancel it, but he says he is ...
6
votes
3answers
187 views

Is there a surefire way to prevent anyone from opening a line of credit in my name?

With this Equifax thing going down, I wonder: What steps can I take to prevent anyone from opening a line of credit in my name? Is there any surefire way to stop this?
5
votes
4answers
385 views

What could be the harm in sharing my American Express statements online?

I would like to store my American Express statements in Google Docs so that my virtual assistant can log the line items into my accounting spreadsheets. It is also handy so that they are in one place ...
5
votes
1answer
936 views

How are brokerage accounts protected from theft, computer glitches and fraud?

I'm thinking about investing in stocks, but I'm worried about losing my investments for reasons unrelated to changes in the market. I know that brokerage accounts are not FDIC-insured. What if a ...
5
votes
1answer
14k views

How a company in India can misuse my PAN number and its scanned copy that I provided as an interview candidate?

Two companies in Bangalore and Pune (India) asked me to send PAN number (government ID number used as ID for income tax return and transaction, like social security number in the US) and scanned soft ...
4
votes
3answers
649 views

Stolen Check honored by bank (maybe after being cancelled). What should I do?

My daughter's checkbook was stolen last Saturday, she reported it to the bank Monday morning 10am and told them to cancel all the checks. She told the police earlier. We're in the USA. Her account ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Stolen Social Security number used to obtain MasterCard - does my friend owe any money?

So... my friend just told me that someone used his SSN to create a MasterCard and used around $6000. So he needs quick money from me. I personally do not understand how. Even if someone can make a ...
4
votes
1answer
198 views

What happens to money paid by IRS in fraudulent refund?

Please forgive my ignorance with this question... According to FRAUD Magazine and Identity theft tax refund fraud, fraudulent refunds cost billions of dollars a year. The article lists some ...
4
votes
1answer
190 views

Vehicle has been broken into. Missing registration, insurance cards

My parents are currently out of town and they have left their vehicle parked on my block. We just discovered that the vehicle has been broken into. Aside from a few personal items, thieves have also ...
4
votes
1answer
103 views

What should I include on a security checklist for choosing a Tax Preparer

I am considering an in-person Tax Preparer vs doing it myself online. I feel a little safer doing it online, but an in-person Preparer can offer advice for complex Tax situations. My concern is that ...
4
votes
1answer
127 views

How to keep an eye on identity theft while away and out of the country?

Greetings, I have been relocated by my company to the US and lived there for a few years. Now I'm back home. Being away I'm suspecting that I'm more susceptible to identity thefts. I'm looking for a ...
4
votes
1answer
177 views

Dealing with fraudulent criminal records resulting from identity theft

What should a victim know about criminal identity theft, where someone is arrested under your identity, and the best way to deal with it? I'm wondering if there is some standard way to find out, or ...
3
votes
4answers
223 views

Lost ID and Identity Theft

my wallet was stolen, and the thief used my credit cards, which I now cancelled. In my wallet was also my state ID (what I have instead of a driving license, since I don't drive). How likely is it ...
3
votes
2answers
251 views

How can I request and verify that my identity information is purged from a bank I no longer use?

I have consolidated a lot of finances from several banks (Chase, a Credit Union) and brokerage houses (Schwab, Fidelity) and since I no longer use these institutions I would like to request a complete ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Using 2 different social security numbers

Let's start by saying that I know what I did was wrong. I opened store credits at a few stores here in the U.S. By using a number that I made up in my head. It's only store credit and not a credit ...
3
votes
1answer
68 views

How to prevent misusing my Account details

One of my friend know my account details like pan no and all, and now he started doing some business with that and I am getting income tax notices for that how I will block him from using my details ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How to get access to US credit report while living outside USA?

I lived in United States for over eight years late 2000/early 2010s. For some reasons I think my identity has been stolen in the US, so I would like to check my credit report. However, I have moved ...
3
votes
1answer
63 views

How important are records of fraudulent applications?

How important is it to try to get copies of the fraudulent applications/materials used by the thieves? This appears to be a consumer right according to the FTC, but the companies seem not to want to ...