Print this page   Close this window

Christian Community Credit Union

Recovery Guide
If you are a victim of identity theft, understand that minimizing damage will take patience and a systematic approach. However, the sooner and more aggressively you deal with the problem, the faster you will see results.
To start, commit yourself to becoming and remaining organized. Since you will be communicating with a lot of people and have many tasks to complete, use an Identity Theft Action Log to keep track. Keep copies of all letters, file paperwork promptly, and store everything in a safe and accessible place.
Creditors and Financial Institutions
  • If accounts have been used or opened illegally, contact your creditors immediately. Ask for fraudulent transaction documentation. You may use a uniform affidavit form, available on the Federal Trade Commission’s website, as you may need it to file a police report. Add "non-guessable” passwords to replacement cards and all existing accounts.
  • If a collection agency attempts to collect on a fraudulent account, explain (in writing) that you are a victim of identity theft and not responsible for the debt. Ask that they confirm in writing that you do not owe the balance and that the account has been closed.
  • For checking account fraud, contact your financial institution to place stop payments on any outstanding checks that you did not write. Report the crime to check reporting agencies. Close current checking and savings accounts and obtain new account numbers and passwords. Monitor all future account statements carefully for evidence of new fraud annually after that.
Legal and Government Agencies
  • Report the crime and file a police report. Request a copy of the report and keep the phone number of your investigator handy. For additional documentation, you may also report the crime to the Federal Trade Commission.
  • Notify your local postal inspector if someone else has used your address. If your Social Security number has been fraudulently used, alert the Social Security Administration.

Credit Reporting Bureaus

  •  It is very important that your credit report lists only factual information. To know what is being reported, you will need to obtain a credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus. If you are married, your spouse should also check his or her report.
  • Even if the fraudulent information hasn’t yet appeared on your reports, be proactive and report the crime now. In a letter to each bureau’s fraud department, request that a "fraud alert” be entered on your file. No new credit should be granted without your approval.
  • The first reports with the fraud alert are free and will be sent to you automatically. Check your credit report for accuracy every three months for a year, then at least annually after that.