Identity Theft

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Prevention and Protection

             Joe Black
Harrison County District Attorney

       Crime Victim Services
    Harrison County Courthouse
200 West Houston Suite 206, 2" d Floor
      Marshall, Texas 75670
         903-938-9312 FAX
                                                     - Texas law also allows you to request that a
                                                     "Security Freeze" be placed on your consumer         Attorney Genera of Texas:
- Ask for information protection policy
                                                     file, which requires the credit reporting agency     214-969-5310
statements from each business that has your
personal information, including your doctors.        to notify you of material changes to your
                                                     consumer file and prevent access to your             Internet Fraud Complaint Center
                                                     consumer file by some entities. You may              WWW. IFCCFBI.GOV
- You may want to contact the Public Utility
Commission of Texas and place yourself on the        request a freeze by sending a letter via certified
                                                     mail to the credit reporting agency including        Major Credit Reporting Agencies
"Texas No Call List." Cost is $4.80.
                                                     identification, and either a valid police report,    1-888-.10PT-OUT (1-888-567-8688
- Do not exchange personal information for           investigative report, or complaint of'an Identity
                                                     Theft crime.                                         CS CREDIT SERVICES (Equifax)
prizes. They should be strings
                                                                                                          P.O. Box 674402
attached, if it sounds too good to be true..:it is
                                                     - Contact the Federal Trade Commission,              Houston, TX 77267-4402
probably ascam.
                                                     which keeps a database of identity thefts.           888-766-0008
What should I do if my information has been
       ^                                             - If you do have to clean up fraudulent              Request Credit Report 800-759-5979
stolen .
                                                     accounts on your credit, make sure all
                                                     communication is done in writing and sent by         EXPERIAN
- Get and keep a copy of the police report. You
                                                     certified mail, return receipt requested. Keep a     P.O. Box 2104
will need it for proof of the crime.
                                                     record of out of pocket expenses incurred.           Allen, TX 75013-2104
                                                                                                          888-397-3742 or 900-659-7000
- If your purse, wallet, checks or drivers license
                                                     - Lastly, keep a detailed log of all your  
are stolen, notify DPS, the Social Security
                                                     contacts with authorities and financial              Request Credit Report 888-397-3742
Administration, local law enforcement agency,
                                                     ins titu
credit card companies and your bank.
                                                     Here is a list of contact information and            P.O. Box 390
- Far any credit card information that has been
                                                     resources you may wish to use.                       Springfield, PA 19064
stolen, contact the fraud/ security department of
the creditor or financial institution and close                                                           www.tuc . com
that account. If it is not feasable to close your     Social Security Administration :
                                                      Fraud Report: 800-259-0271                          Request Credit Report 800-888-4213
bank account, you can have it flagged by the
                                                      Order Statement: 800-772-1213
three major credit bureaus.
                                                     www. ssa. gov
- Contact all three credit reporting agencies
                                                     Federal Trade Commission:                                           Joe Black
and place a security alert on your credit.
You should do this by telephone as soon as
                                                     Oversees the credit bureaus and maintains a            Harrison County District Attorney
                                                     database of identity thefts. You may also
possible and then follow up in writing. You
                                                     obtain a copy of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.                   903-935-8408
may wish to send them an ID theft affidavit and
                                                     877-382-4357                                                    903-938-9312 FAX
copies of the police report. Make sure written
communication is sent certified mail.                www. ftc. gov
 -Always shred your cedit card recess and          Your information may allowacriminaUa;
discarded credit card applications, ATM
receipts and unretained bills.                     -open unauthorized charge accounts
                                                   - order goods and services
- Never give personal information to someone       -access your personal or business accounts for
over the telephone. Always ask for a physical      withdrawals or purchases.
location and get the full name of anyone you       -secure loans
deal with.                                         -hide illegal funds
                                                   - gain employment to circumvent criminal
- Check all your billing statements and bank       background checks
statements for unauthorized charges or
withdrawals. If you do not receive a regular       What personal information do they want?
statement on time, contact your credit card
company or bank immediately.                       -social security number
                                                   - date of birth
- Always instruct your credit card issuers and       drivers' license number
anyone else you purchase goods or services           mothers' maiden name
from that you do not wish to share or sell your    - bank account or credit/ debit card numbers
information with/ to others.                       - PIN numbers
                                                   - log-on names / ID
- Remove your name from marketing lists,           -passwords
surveys, etc.
                                                   No one is completely safe from identity theft.
- Install a locked mailbox with a slot. Never      The following are steps that can be taken to
place your mail in an unsecured/ open              help secure your personal information and
container. Take it to the post office or           prevent identity theft.
neighborhood mailbox.
                                                   - Create a log of all credit and personal
- Always check the reputation of any company       information, including credit card numbers,
you do business with on-line. Also look fora       customer service telephone numbers and credit
contact address located within the continental     reporting agency contact information.
United States. It is much more difficult to
retrieve funds or information transferred out of   - Review your credit report at least once a year.
the country. Be cautious of any business that
only has a P.O. Box for an address.                - Do not pre-print your drivers' licence
                                                   number, social security number or phone
- Check Social Security statements for             number on your checks.