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Preparing for Identity Theft Battles

By Ruth Racey
Published: Thursday, October 1st, 2009

Millions of transactions are made over the net everyday. With it, the problem of identity theft has become a nightmare for people who use the internet as their principal method of communication. This problem is made worse by the fact that there are currently no effective safeguards against this crime which makes identity theft battles really difficult. As soon as somebody discovers a way to block potential hackers, another discovers some way to go around the block. It is a contest between two equally adept computer technology experts with different objectives.

The repercussions of identity theft can last years and why not, since it is your financial stability that is directly affected. An identity theft can deprive you of your hard earned money and even good reputation overnight. There are times when you will not discover the theft immediately because the culprit will be using the information stolen from you a little at a time. You are luckier than others. You will have time to report the theft to your credit companies, credit bureaus, banks and the Federal Trade Commission Identity Theft Clearinghouse before your accounts are emptied and before you exceed your credit without benefiting from it.

The financial ruin is just a part of it. There are other things the thief can do to benefit from the stolen information. He can apply for jobs using your identity; besmirching your reputation should he do anything shameful. He can do anything knowing that he is operating under an identity not his.

You need a good plan to prevent the thief from doing further harm to your finances and reputation. Do not panic since it will color your judgment and you might commit mistakes which will make the situation worse. Consult people who have been through similar situations and solicit advice. They must have learned a lot from their experience which might be useful to you.

The federal identity theft clearinghouse will be doing a lot of work in your behalf, but there are other things you can do. Ask the credit bureaus to freeze your accounts and close them before the thief gets to them. You should also notify the Social Security Commission and the Motor Vehicle department. Inform them documents presented in your name are bound to be stolen. This will make nabbing the perpetrator easier since these agencies will be alert for him or her.

Monitor the work authorities are doing. It is not good to let them have the idea that you have lost interest. Although they are professionals, they handle thousands of cases and your vigilance will motivate them to stay on your case.

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