Now that you have read through the first six parts of our series, “Successfully Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft”, you know and understand how challenging ID theft is, how criminals access your information, and how to protect yourself from the possibility of becoming the next victim of this crime. In this final installment of this series, we will be informing you of the steps that you may take in order to repair the damage if you become the next victim of identity theft. Somerville National Bank prides itself on being a reliable source of information on all things financial to our clients and the communities that we serve. At the end of the conclusion of this series, we will provide you with contact information so that you may communicate with us should you have any final questions, concerns, or comments about this series, or identity theft, in general. If you have suffered through identity theft, simply follow the measures outlined below:
- First and foremost, you should contact the police department or the sheriff’s office that serves your region. These professionals will take a report and provide you with a report number. You should obtain a copy of the report as soon as possible so that it may be provided to all of the creditors that have also been the subject of victimization under your name.
- Once you have reported the identity theft in which you were a victim, you should be certain to consistently monitor your bank accounts. If you notice that any illegal activity has occurred on the account, it should be shut down immediately and your bank should be notified to inform retailers not to honor the checks from that particular account.
- The third step in handling identity theft is contacting the credit report agencies. These include Equifax (800-525-6285), Experian (888-397-3742), and TransUnion (800-680-7289). The contact will result in your account being flagged. Once this happens, any business that is conducted through your account will require that your identity be verified. If victim fraud is confirmed, a fraud alert may be placed on your credit accounts with the reporting agencies for a period of 7 years.
- The next step is to contact the fraud unit associated with your creditors within 60 days of your normal billing cycle. The only amount of loss you will experience for that time is $50.00.
- Finally, you will need to report the case of identity theft to the Federal Trade Commission. This organization has a toll-free hotline that you may use for this purpose. The number is: 877-IDTHEFT.
Somerville National Bank would like to take this time to thank you for reading our series, “Successfully Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft”. Our Somerville branch is located at 197 South Main in Somerville, Ohio. If you would like to contact us by telephone for any questions, concerns, or comments about this series or identity theft, in general, you may call our Somerville branch at 513-726-6471. Our customer care representatives are standing by to assist you with all of your financial needs.