When an identity thief uses your personal information to convince a financial institution to give him or her full control of your account.
Affidavit of factual innocence
A legal document issued by a court, stating that you’re innocent. You may need one of these if you’ve been wrongfully arrested as a result of identity theft.
Affidavit of forgery
A legal document that states that a certain signature is not yours, but a forgery.
A method identity thieves use to commit check fraud. They dip a check in acetone, which washes the ink off so they can write it for a higher amount.
Credit repair agency
A company that offers "cleanup” services to remove accurate information from your credit report. Often illegal and expensive, they are sometimes called credit clinics.
Credit reporting agency (CRA)
Commonly known as credit bureaus, they keep track of credit records, and issue credit reports to those who have a legitimate reason for accessing your credit history.
DL stop (driver license stop)
A DL stop is a system that puts a flag on your driver license in the Department of Motor Vehicle’s database, to show that your license has been lost or stolen.
A fraud alert is put on your credit report at the CRAs if you become an identity theft victim. It lets potential creditors know that someone may be trying to obtain new credit in your name, so the process will be very closely scrutinized.
Guidelines set out in the FCRA that outline the allowable reasons for requesting a copy of a credit report. One of those reasons is if you’re a victim of identity theft.
Truncated credit card number
When all the digits of your credit or debit card number, except for the last four or five, are "x’d” out on a receipt or other document. This is done to protect you from identity theft.
A statement that is attached to your credit report when you think you may be a victim of identity theft. It asks creditors to contact you before opening any new credit accounts, or making any changes to existing ones.