There are several common types of identity theft that can affect you:
- Tax ID theft - Someone uses your Social Security number to falsely file tax returns with the IRS or your state
- Medical ID theft - Someone steals your Medicare ID or health insurance member number. Thieves use this information to get medical services or send fake bills to your health insurer.
- Social ID theft - Someone uses your name and photos to create a fake account on social media
Take steps to avoid being a victim of identity theft. Secure your internet connections, use security features, and review bills. Read more about how you can prevent identity theft.
Report identity (ID) theft to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) online at IdentityTheft.gov or by phone at 1-877-438-4338.
If you report identity theft online, you will receive an identity theft report and a recovery plan. Create an account on the website to update your recovery plan, track your progress, and receive pre-filled form letters to send to creditors. If you don't create an account, you won't be able to access the report or letters later. Download the FTC's publication (PDF, Download Adobe Reader) for detailed tips, checklists, and sample letters.
If you report identity theft by phone, the FTC will collect the details of your situation. But it won't give you an ID theft report or recovery plan.
You may also choose to report identity theft to the Bellaire Police Department. Some banks and credit card companies require a police report to take action.
Report Specific Types of Identity Theft
You may also report specific types of identity theft to other federal agencies.
Report Identity Theft to Other Organizations
You can also report the theft to other organizations, such as:
- Credit Reporting Agencies - Contact one of the three major credit reporting agencies to place fraud alerts or freezes on your accounts. Also get copies of your credit reports, to be sure that no one has already tried to get unauthorized credit accounts with your personal information. Confirm that the credit reporting agency will alert the other two credit reporting agencies.
- National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center - Report cases of identity theft that resulted from a stay in a nursing home or long-term care facility.
- Financial Institutions - Contact the fraud department at your bank, credit card issuers and any other places where you have accounts.
- Retailers and Other Companies - Report the crime to companies where the identity thief opened credit accounts or even applied for jobs.
- State Consumer Protection Offices or Attorney General - Some states offer resources to help you contact creditors and dispute errors.
You may need to get new personal records or identification cards if you're the victim of ID theft. Learn how to replace your vital identification documents after identity theft.