What should you do if you become a victim of identity theft? If your identity has been stolen, these are the three steps you should take:
1. Call one of the nationwide credit reporting companies to place a fraud alert.
Ask them to put a fraud alert on your credit report. This means businesses must confirm that you are you before they extend credit in your name. The alert is a roadblock in the path of an identity thief. And it's just one phone call away. Learn more about how to place fraud alerts and security freezes on your credit report here.
2. Order free copies of your credit report.
Order a copy of your report from each of the nationwide credit reporting companies. Learn how to order and review your report here.
3. Complete the complaint form at ftc.gov/complaint.
This creates an identity theft affidavit, which helps you file a police report. Keep records of your calls and copies of your documents. You'll use them later on.
For more tips and tools on dealing with identity theft, visit ftc.gov/idtheft.