How Can I Find Out If Someone Is Using My Identity?

What is a ghost bank account?

The term “ghost account” or “ghost” (also known as a “sockpuppet” on other sites) is used to describe additional user accounts created or operated by an existing WP user, often used for the purposes of creating mischief or to bypass moderation penalties..

Can I sue someone for stealing my identity?

Many have passed laws allowing identity theft victims to sue. … One way to file suit against the bureaus or other entities that disclose your credit information is to use the Fair Credit Reporting Act. In order to do so, you have to establish actual damages. The FRCA does not have a minimum recovery amount for damages.

What do I do if my Social Security number has been compromised?

Report the theft of the Social Security number to the IRS at http://www.irs.gov/uac/Identity-Protection. You can also call 1-800-908-4490. That will prevent tax-fraud thieves from filing tax returns in your name — and collecting your tax refund.

How can you protect yourself from identity theft?

Steps to Protect Yourself from Identity TheftGo “All in” on Using Passwords. … Mix up Your Passwords. … Stay Away From Shady Websites and Links. … Never Give Out Personal Information. … Regularly Check Your Credit Reports. … Establish Fraud Alerts if Needed. … Protect Documents With Personal Information. … Limit Your Exposure.

Can I change my SSN?

Key Takeaways. The Social Security Administration generally does not encourage or allow citizens to change their Social Security numbers, except under certain circumstances. You can change your SSN if you can prove that using your existing number will cause you harm, such as in cases of abuse or harassment.

How do I check to see if someone is using my Social Security number?

To see if your Social Security number is being used by someone else for employment purposes, review your Social Security Statement at www.socialsecurity.gov/myaccount to look for suspicious activity. Finally, you’ll want to use additional scrutiny by regularly checking your bank and credit card accounts online.

What happens when someone uses your SSN?

Once someone has your Social Security number, they can essentially become you. They may be able to collect tax refunds, collect benefits and income, commit crimes, make purchases, set up phone numbers and websites, establish residences, and use health insurance—all in your name.

Are identity thieves ever caught?

Identity thieves almost never get caught In a study done in 2006, “only 1 in 700 identity theft suspects were arrested by federal authorities (0.14%).” … It’s safe to say that identity thieves are far more likely to get away with their crimes.

What can someone do with your name and address?

With a name and address, a thief can change your address via U.S. Postal Service and redirect mail to their address of choice, Velasquez says. With access to your financial mail, the thief may intercept bank statements and credit card offers or bills, then order new checks and credit cards.

How do you check to see if someone stole your identity?

Clues That Someone Has Stolen Your InformationYou see withdrawals from your bank account that you can’t explain.You don’t get your bills or other mail.Merchants refuse your checks.Debt collectors call you about debts that aren’t yours.You find unfamiliar accounts or charges on your credit report.More items…

How can I find out if someone opened an account in my name?

One way to find out if there are fraudulent accounts in your name is to check your credit reports regularly. Pull your credit reports (you’re entitled to a free credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies once a year), then check the accounts to see that everything listed belongs to you.

What to do if you suspect someone is using your identity?

10 Steps to Take If You Suspect You’re a Victim of Identity TheftAnalyze Your Situation. … Place a Fraud Alert with a National Credit Reporting Agency (CRA) … Check Your Financial Accounts. … Check Your Computer for Viruses. … Secure Your Proof of Identity. … File a Complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) … File a Police Report. … Keep a Record of Your Actions.More items…

What happens when your identity is stolen?

Identity (ID) theft happens when someone steals your personal information to commit fraud. The identity thief may use your information to apply for credit, file taxes, or get medical services. These acts can damage your credit status, and cost you time and money to restore your good name.

Can someone access my bank account with my Social Security number?

Open financial accounts Your Social Security number is the most important piece of personal information a bank needs when extending you credit or opening an account. With that number, a thief can get credit cards or loans, and when it comes time to repay them, they won’t, damaging your credit in the process.

What can someone do with last 4 digits of SSN?

Not only can they open credit in your name, steal your money and government benefits, they can also obtain medical care and tax refunds in your name. Guard your “Final Four.” Although they are widely used and shared, the last four digits of your SSN are the most important to protect. When asked by others, just say no.

What happens if someone steals my Social Security number?

If your wallet or purse containing your Social Security card is stolen, contact your local police department as soon as possible to file a theft report. Also, contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 to request a replacement Social Security card.

What are the four types of identity theft?

Types of Identity TheftFinancial Identity Theft. Financial identity theft is by far the most common type of identity theft. … Medical Identity Theft. … Criminal Identity Theft. … Child Identity Theft. … Identity Cloning & Concealment. … Synthetic Identity Theft. … Mitigate Your Risk.

How long does it take to recover from identity theft?

And ID theft recovery is a time drain, too. The average time it takes to fix an identity theft issue is seven hours, usually over the course of a day (most common) up to a month. In extreme cases, people may spend up to 1,200 hours over the course of a year or more resolving identity theft problems.