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Identity Theft


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#1 Kimberly

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Posted 21 August 2008 - 03:18 PM

Last summer my personal identity information was found (among other people's identity information) by the FBI when they busted up a huge nationwide identity theft ring.

Ever since then, I have to file fraud reports with all 3 credit bureaus and get copies of my credit reports every 90 days to monitor for unusual activity. The credit bureaus have instructions to contact me by phone if anyone is trying to open new credit in my name.

Well, I just got a copy of my most recent reports from all 3 bureaus, and one of them has this weird inquiry by a utility company in the Southeast U.S. (where I don't live). First blip in over a year. This happens to be the same state that the big case was in.

So I called the FBI agent who handled the case, and he told me since the kingpins are behind bars, they are no longer taking information about the case. Of course, he's right -- but just because those 2 people are in jail, doesn't mean my information isn't out there floating anymore. It just makes me so mad!

I went down to my local police station to file a report. I have to file a report, or I can't ask the utility company to provide me with the application that was submitted that had my information on it. My local police department can take my statement, however, there really isn't anything they can do about it. If the utility company sends me the documentation that was submitted to them with my personal information on it, the police here can forward the info to the police department in Florida and have them look into it. Of course this could also be just a typo. Someone at the utility company might have accidentally transposed a number and accessed my credit instead of someone else's. But it's the "not knowing" that is a killer!

I am so mad about this because I only have so many good hours in the day, and I have to waste them on crap like this. My identity was stolen from a legitimate company that I did business with (my cell phone carrier; an employee allegedly sold customer information directly out of their database). I didn't forget to shred a bill or pop my information into a fake website. It was through no fault of my own and now I have this huge time and worry burden.

Mostly I am just venting here. But I should make a public service announcement that you can get free copies of your credit reports once a year from each of the 3 major credit bureaus. You should do this, to make sure there are no accounts showing up that aren't really yours, or any weird inquiries like the one I saw. A good rule of thumb is to request them at www.annualcreditreport.com during the month of your birthday -- this way you won't forget, and every year you can request them for free.

Here's wishing all of you a MUCH better time keeping your information protected!

Kimberly





#2 Marcianna

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Posted 25 August 2008 - 09:05 PM

Good greif! That is insane! I had my identity stolen when I lived in AZ but I have not had credit report issues ever... instead my info was supposed to be used to get mexicans into the states illegally.(they busted some guy who had boxes of stuff like that and my things were there too.) And sadly it is my own fault. Or really the fault of narcolepsy...lol. Just after I got married I had started a new job and had to take in all my info. but I had not changed my name on all my info yet so I had to take in everything. So when I fell asleep on the bus on the way home my purse got stolen. Along with my wedding license, birth certificate, ID and SS card. It took about a month to get everything straightened out. Happily my employer had photo copied everything and that helped alot. I got everything replaced and taken care of.

OOPS. dont fall asleep on buses in Tucson. not a good idea.

#3 Kimberly

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Posted 26 August 2008 - 09:27 AM

Marcianna,

I bet that was stressful!! Starting a new job and getting married are already two major life events, but having all of that stolen at the same time is just more on top of that.

I'm glad that you were able to get everything replaced.

One thing you can do -- when you get your Social Security statements (these come from the SSA and tell you how much your lifetime earnings have been, so you know how much you'll get from them when you retire) you can check the total earnings. If someone has been working using your information, the amounts will be higher than what you are aware you've earned.

I haven't heard anything back from the utility company yet (I actually sent the letter certified mail, return receipt requested so at this point I haven't even gotten the return receipt yet).

K

QUOTE (Marcianna @ Aug 25 2008, 09:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Good greif! That is insane! I had my identity stolen when I lived in AZ but I have not had credit report issues ever... instead my info was supposed to be used to get mexicans into the states illegally.(they busted some guy who had boxes of stuff like that and my things were there too.) And sadly it is my own fault. Or really the fault of narcolepsy...lol. Just after I got married I had started a new job and had to take in all my info. but I had not changed my name on all my info yet so I had to take in everything. So when I fell asleep on the bus on the way home my purse got stolen. Along with my wedding license, birth certificate, ID and SS card. It took about a month to get everything straightened out. Happily my employer had photo copied everything and that helped alot. I got everything replaced and taken care of.

OOPS. dont fall asleep on buses in Tucson. not a good idea.