Remember when fingerprint and facial recognition scanning was just cool spy tech seen in Mission Impossible movies? Until recently, only the CIA and top secret spy agencies had this cool technology at their disposal. Long gone are those days as everyone with a late model cell phone or mobile device can now take advantage of these cool biometric security features. However, there may be some downsides to unlocking your smartphone or tablet with a scan of your thumbprint or face.
By the year 2019, it’s estimated that there will be nearly 500 million biometric scanners in use around the world. Amounting to a staggering $25 billion dollar industry. Biometric scanning is meant to take the place of alpha-numeric passwords that we’ve all used for years and is being touted as a more secure way to lock down your sensitive information. But just like normal passwords, that are stored on encrypted clouds and servers across the globe, won’t thumbprints and eye scans be susceptible to hacking and theft as well?
But there have already been cases of biometric hacking on a large scale. An estimated 22 million people had their personal data stolen in a massive data breach at the Office of Personnel Management in December 2014, including RAND privacy expert and mother of two Rebecca Balebako. She received a letter from OPM last year informing her that her personal information, including her ten fingerprints, were stolen in the breach. – Read the full article here.
Keeping your identity safe is important. If someone else is able to get their hands on your sensitive identification information, not only can they pretend to be you for all intents and purposes, but they can also take your money, your credit and your entire life The anonymity of this crime makes many people feel helpless to prevent it.
There is no need to be hopeless though. There are some easy ways that you can keep your identity safe, starting today, that can make a world of difference in protecting your information. Here are the Top 10 ID theft prevention tips that you can implement today to help to make your identity safer.
1. Don’t carry extra credit or debit cards
Do you have one primary account that you use for spending? Then keep that one card with you and lock up whatever other ones you may have in a safe location at home where thieves won’t think to look. Not only does this make it harder for an identity thief to get their hands on all of your accounts, but it will also improve your spending habits.
2. Crosscut shredders are a must have in your home
We all like to joke about the guy who got his tie caught in the shredder, but those old shredders really don’t do anything. Straight line cut paper is easy to remove from your trash that is curbside and can be easily taped together by an identity thief. Look for a crosscut shredder that spits out tiny little pieces of paper. This will discourage an identity thief to no end.
3. Recycle Your shredded information
Taking your personal papers that have been shredded and dumping them into a huge recycling bin full of paper eliminates the curbside thief. Mixed up with literally tons of other paper, your identity simply gets lost in the mix.
4. Never carry your Social Security card
The only reason why you need a Social Security card with you is to provide a copy of it to a new employer, and even then you could make the copy at home. Other companies may request your Social Security card for verification of who you are, but you can request alternative methods of identification.
5. Use one time credit card numbers while online shopping
Many credit card companies offer an online shopping service where they will assign your account a unique number that is good for one purchase only that you have authorized. This prevents identity thieves from getting your actual credit card number if you happen to have spyware of keylogging software inadvertently installed on your computer.
6. Don’t surf the internet without anti-virus, anti-spyware, a firewall, and anti-malware software installed.
The internet is a dangerous place thanks to the actions of a few, so to keep yourself safe while working, surfing, and playing online, be sure to have all the protective services properly installed and updated on your computer. Identity thieves have even started to create viruses that affect Apple’s O/S, so always remember that every computer you own is a potential target.
7. Keep a list of all your financial account numbers locked away.
If you do happen to lose your wallet or purse, or you suspect you have become the victim of identity theft, time is of the essence. By having this information easily accessible, you can simply grab your list and start making calls instead of fumbling around on the internet and through your files trying to find it after the fact.
8. Don’t give out any information to people you don’t know.
Why would someone you not know or a company you’ve never done business with need your identification information? To steal your identity, that’s why! If you don’t know who is asking for your info, don’t give it to them until you’ve verified the authenticity of their request.
9. Beware aware of “phishing.”
Phishing is one of the biggest causes of identity theft around today. Identity thieves get you to give them your information through a bogus e-mail or even phone call demanding you verify your information to save an account you might have with a legitimate business. You talk to a convincing person on the phone or you get transferred to a legitimate looking website where you “verify” the info, but what you are really doing is simply handing your identity away. You haven’t won anything. Your account will not be closed. You do not ever have to give someone a password or your PIN number. Always, always, always ask questions if you are unsure!
10. Sometimes You Can Share Too Much Information
With the invention of social networking on the internet through the various websites, we tend to get very friendly with a lot of different people who we may not even know personally. All it takes for an identity thief who has friended or followed you to get into your home and take your identification information is for you to post that you’re going to be out for a few hours, that you’re headed out on vacation for a couple weeks, or that you’re in charge of the school carpool for next week.
Chances are you have pictures uploaded of your home that even show your file cabinets, safes, or lockboxes in the background behind a smiling face. Be careful about who you decide to let follow you & friend you, and then be careful about what you share with them. Without intending to do so, you could be setting yourself up for an identity theft incident and not even realize it.
Identity theft is the fastest growing crime currently in the United States, and it is growing around the world as well. You can protect yourself against identity theft easily by following these Top 10 guidelines as consistently as possible, while also looking into a credit monitoring protection plan that might fit your extended needs. Identity theft is a $40 billion per year problem – don’t let it cost you too.
Update: The Citi Credit Monitoring Service Program was terminated 3-31-2015.
We recommend you look at our IdentityGuard monitoring review as an alternative to the Citi monitoring plan.
IdentityMonitor is a service provided by Citibank. Citibank has been in business for the past 200 years thanks to its ability to do business through what they call Responsible Finance. What this means to Citibank is that they have invested hundreds of millions of dollars into small businesses, infrastructure, and other choice opportunities to help the average consumer be able to work for themselves, protect themselves, and achieve anything they wish to achieve. IdentityMonitor comes under the realm of protection for CitiBank customers, but is available for anyone who is wishing to have credit and identity theft protections.
Daily Monitoring for Daily Results
The key to being able to catch an identity thief in the act is to monitor your information on a daily basis. IdentityMonitor does this through credit monitoring reports every day to determine if any changes have been made to critical components, such as your address, your delinquent accounts, or new lines of credit, whether secured or unsecured.
IdentityMonitor also helps you have a hand in keeping your identity safe by providing you a complete credit report and credit score analysis upon signing up for their identity theft protection services. You then get access to this information for free on a monthly basis. This allows you to manually review your credit information to insure that all the information shown is authorized by you.
IdentityMonitor Gives You Effective Alerts
If IdentityMonitor detects information that may cause an identity theft to potentially occur or believes that a theft has already occurred, then you will be notified via the Notify Express system that Citibank has set up. This alert system lets you know when there is any change to your information that may be an indicator of fraud. You can also be notified in the way that works the best for you: through standard U.S. mail, e-mail, text messages, or by a phone call.
Get the Support That You Need
With an IdentityMonitor subscription, you get around the clock access to your credit information with a simple log-in. Some folks have questions about what it takes to adequately keep their identities and credit safe, If you believe that you have been the victim of identity theft, you also have immediate access to Citi’s Identity Theft Solutions department.
Should you become the victim of identity theft, you have access to a $10,000 – $25,000 insurance policy in most states to help you be able to work to recover your identity. This can help you to be able to defend yourself effectively, cover the costs of restoring your identity, and even cover lost wages that may occur while you are working to restore your identity. It may not be as much as the insurance policies of other companies, but unlike other identity theft policies, there is no limit to the amount of claims that you can have. Each claim you make gives you access to another policy!
Signing Up for IdentityMonitor is Easy!
You can sign up today for IdentityMonitor without being a member of Citibank! All you have to do is fill out your personal information and once you’ve agreed to the terms and conditions, you’ll have instant access to your Experian credit information. A simple and free upgrade is all that is required to get all three of the major credit bureau’s information about you around the clock.
Pricing & Value
IdentityMonitor offers only one plan of service that covers daily monitoring of your credit information and assistance in restoring your identity. You can try IdentityMonitor for the first 30 days for just $1, and then afterwards is $12.95/month. It should be noted that Citibank, in their terms and conditions, state that they can modify or cancel the IdentityMonitor program, including a change in the price of the program, without notifying you about these changes.
Protect Your Identity & Your Credit Today
Thanks to the Federal bailout, Citibank is more stable than ever when it comes to being able to provide an essential service to its customers. Becoming a customer of Citibank to make sure your credit and identity are effectively covered puts a bank on your side when it comes to fighting for you. Try out IdentityMonitor today for just a buck and discover how good it feels knowing that your identity and your credit are in safe hands.
Placing a freeze on your credit report is one of the initial steps you should take if you discover you are the victim of identity theft. This temporary freeze prevents the information in your credit file from being reported to companies, credit grantors etc. The short version is that nobody can run a credit inquiry and see your credit report. This prevents further fraudulent accounts from being opened with your social security number and personal identifiable information.
Only the individual who’s social security number is attached to that credit file can request a temporary credit freeze or a temporary lift of the credit freeze. Keep in mind that you will not be able to apply for new lines of credit, loans or mortgages while the freeze is in place, so you will need to plan ahead if you know that a creditor may need to pull your credit report in the near future.
When submitting for a credit report freeze, you must do so with ALL 3 CREDIT BUREAUS. Equifax, Experian & TransUnion. Additionally, if you wish to temporarily remove the freeze, you must again request the lift with all 3 bureaus. After you freeze your credit files, it will be necessary to monitor your credit reports over the next several weeks & months, to ensure no new fraudulent accounts were reported before you set the security freeze.
TransUnion is one of the three credit reporting bureaus along with Equifax and Experian. The three credit reporting agencies keep track of your credit history and provide reports to prospective lenders and mortgage brokers. TransUnion not only reports on your credit, but they have processes in place to help make corrections to your report. On their site, TransUnion asks: “Have you applied for a credit card and been denied because of bad credit?” Credit card companies may be closing the door to you because of inaccurate information! TransUnion helps to fix your credit record, but only if you know what your TransUnion credit report says and specifically what needs to be fixed on TransUnion’s report.
TransUnion allows you to run a credit check on yourself quickly and easily. You could even pull your TransUnion credit report online while on a lunch break or in your pajamas at home. The sooner you see the Experian, Equifax or TransUnion credit reports that lenders and credit card companies see, the sooner you can make the changes needed to improve your credit rating and change in your life.
With a menu of reporting format options ranging from a free TransUnion credit report to a low-cost $29.95 three in one credit report profile including a free credit score, there is almost no reason that you can’t quickly and conveniently obtain your TransUnion credit report information and immediately report any payment, debt, name, or address mistakes to TransUnion.
Do you need to purchase a personal TransUnion credit report? Right now you can run a personal credit check for only $9. Do you want to compare your Experian, Equifax and TransUnion credit reports side-by-side to be sure none of them are reporting damaging or flat out wrong information about your credit history? If so, the three in one credit report is the way to go.
Yes, credit reporting agencies sometimes make mistakes. TransUnion may not even know it and their mistakes could cost you. It is up to you to make sure that your debt payment history information is reflected accurately on TransUnion’s report. Does your TransUnion credit report tell lenders that you made two late payments — but you didn’t? Does the report say that you still have an outstanding auto loan debt — but your car is paid off? Correcting wrong info can possibly increase your credit score. Increasing your credit score could mean the difference between a lender saying YES instead of NO. Transunion also offers id protection services that will keep track of your credit reports for fraud and identity theft.
Here is what a TransUnion credit report will show you:
- Names you have used
- Current and prior addresses
- Names of your creditors
- The amount of secured and unsecured debt taken out in your name
- Whether that debt is in the form of a revolving or installment account
- The current balances versus the limits on those accounts
- How prompt or late payments have been
- Your employment history and employer addresses
- Public records of judgments or liens against you
How do you get your TransUnion credit report right now? Just visit their site at www.transunion.com.free credit report.
One of the most important parts of returning your life to normal after your identity has been stolen is to fill out an identity theft police report. Filling out an identity theft police report will make the police aware of the theft and will allow them to charge the criminal with the crime when they are found and if your information can be linked to them in any way, they will be charged with the crime. Unless the police are aware that the identity theft has occurred, there is no chance that the criminal will ever be charged with the crime.
Why Is Filling Out The Report Important?
In many cases, any credit card companies that you contact to close accounts that were opened because of the identity theft will require you to fill out an identity theft police report before they will consider your claim to be valid. You may also be required to sign a waiver allowing the credit card company to prosecute the person that has opened the fraudulent account to the full extent of the law once they have been found so that the credit card company can recoup their losses. Identity theft fraud costs credit card companies and banks millions of dollars each year and allowing the criminals to be prosecuted in criminal court means that the company many be able to get back some of the money that they lost.
Once you have filled out an identity theft police report, chances are that you will not be held liable for the accounts that were opened fraudulently in your name. Many credit card agreements have a waiver that the person will not be held accountable in the event of the account being used by another person for criminal matters and will cancel the account at the request of the victim with very few questions asked. It is easy for the credit card company to determine whether a credit card is being used for fraudulent purchases because after the credit card has been issued, the criminal charges as many items to the credit card as possible in a short amount of time, maxing it out, and never make any payments on the bill for the account.
What Happens After You Fill Out The Report?
After you fill out the identity theft police report, there is little else that you will need to do until the criminal that was using your identity has been caught. If you have authorized the credit card company to pursue the conviction of the criminal, you probably won’t even have to show up at the court for the trial of the criminal. In some cases, the criminal will be conducting their criminal operations in another state, which would make it difficult for the person to attend the court hearings, but in the majority of the cases, just filing an identity theft police report is enough to ensure that the criminal will be tried for the crime.
How To Report Possible Identity Theft
It is important for every person to know how to report possible identity theft. Identity theft is a terrible offense that causes a great deal of financial problems for the people that are affected by the crime. The problems associated with identity theft will generally occur …What Steps Should Be Taken To Report Identity Theft? – Protection Against Identity Theft – Identity theft is a horrible crime that continues to victimize a person long after the theft has occurred. The hassles start when the crime is discovered and continues as the victim tries to repair the damage that was done to their credit history. If the person is lucky, they …How To Avoid Losing Money Through Credit Report Identity Theft – Protection Against Identity Theft – Credit report identity theft is becoming more and more of an issue each year as more people go through the hassle of having their personal information stolen. So how can a person avoid losing a great deal of money from an occurrence of credit report identity theft? There are …
Types of Credit Card Fraud
Credit card fraud comes in several different forms and even if you don’t currently have any credit cards in your name, you can still become a victim. Criminals are becoming more crafty as they attempt to find ways to steal your credit and use it fraudulently. Here are some of the more common credit card fraud methods that you should familiarize yourself with.
Application fraud: The most common type is the application fraud. Fake or stolen documents are used to open credit card accounts. This is of two types: The card obtained by assuming the identity of someone or by falsifying the financial position to obtain credit.
Assuming the identity of another person is a form of traditional identity theft. The fraudster may create false names and addresses or even steal the identity of an existing person to obtain the card.
Acquiring more credit than entitled, by exaggerating financial position is another common practice. Banks often protect their interests by demanding documents to support the financial claims or by confirming details with the employers.
Stealing: Criminals get hold of your card either by stealing or when you lose it. Postal intercepts are a common form of stealing cards whereby the card is stolen before it reaches the rightful owner by post.
Skimming: This is a type of fraud where the card is cloned or forged without the card owner’s knowledge. The data in the magnetic strip of the card is copied and used. This type of crime is difficult to spot since skimming is exposed only when the next statement is generated. The magnetic strip can be copied by a dishonest employee at the point of sale, with illegal recording devices or by skimming devices installed in cash machines.
Online fraud: Most credit card frauds are committed over the internet. The card details are hacked at the merchant site when being used to make legitimate online purchases. Another common scam is thorough phishing. The phishing sites send out false e-mails or links to fraudulent sites to deceive the card owner to part with card details. These details are then used to make false purchases.
CNP fraud: Purchasing goods on mail order or on telephone without involving a direct seller, where no PIN verification is required, can result in card not present (CNP) fraud. The card details are obtained even from old receipts and since the seller does not verify the PIN number or signature, it becomes difficult to detect such crimes.
BIN attack: Credit cards companies often come under the BIN (Bank Identification Number) attack. Fraudsters generate the last four numbers by obtaining the first six numbers (BIN) of a legitimate card. The cards in the same BIN range have similar data like expiry dates etc.
The key to avoiding such frauds is to be aware and follow safe practices. Always use strong passwords on your internet banking and credit card websites. Do not give secure information on telephone or e-mail. Report a lost card immediately to block any further transaction. Also, consider using a credit monitoring service to keep track of what’s going on with your credit reports. With such simple safe practices, you can ensure that your plastic money is safe.
Computer Data Has a Long Shelf Life
Conscientious people shred their bank statements and cut up their credit cards without a thought. But when it comes to disposing of their computer’s hard drive, they can be extremely careless. With computers constantly evolving and being made more powerful, people frequently upgrade to the newest models, casting aside millions of computers yearly. Many computer users leave sensitive information on their hard drives as they discard them at computer drop-off centers or in landfills, just waiting for an identity thief to come by. If you have a computer to dispose of, you don’t want to become a future statistic for identity theft.
Some people do not realize the process involved in removing data from a hard drive. Many computer users think if they move all their files to the trash or reformat the hard drive that the files are gone for good. Actually, those trashed files remain fully intact, unless they are rewritten. Rewriting only takes place if space is needed and most computers have ample space. In the case of reformatting the drive, data can be still retrieved with the right tools. If you are among the unaware, the Department of Defense has advice on how to remove information from a hard drive.
Wiping the Hard Drive
You can buy programs, also known as shredders, which are relatively inexpensive, or find freeware on the Internet that will do the job. These programs cover the data with zeros or random characters to make them unreadable by data-restoration software. The DOD recommends overwriting the drive sectors three times with different characters. Other experts recommend going over the data seven times to make it completely unrecoverable. Also, wiping just certain files may not fully protect your information, as copies of those files can be stored in other parts of your computer. It is probably best to use the wiping program on your entire hard drive.
Removing the Hard Drive
If you don’t want to use a wiping program, you can remove your computer’s hard drive. It is relatively small and will store easily in a safe or other secure location. If you aren’t sure where the hard drive is located on your computer, refer to your manual or manufacturer’s website. Once removed, some people resort to pounding the hard drive with a hammer, or using a magnet, or soaking it in water or acid. All these methods are ineffectual. The only method to guarantee the removal of your information is to sand the platters or use an industrial shredder which obliterates it.
The sheer amount of e-waste being generated each year is a threat to our environment. Federal regulations don’t cover e-waste, but some states have passed legislation dealing with the landfill problem. Yet, disposing of a computer is easier today than a few years ago as there are more options available. To help confront the landfill problem, some stores have unveiled take-back or buy-back programs. While online sites have also appeared to buy back old electronics, where they will revamp them to sell or recycle the components. You would be doing a great service if you consider other options rather than tossing your computer into a landfill.
Stealing your sensitive information from an old hard drive is just one way criminals can commit identity theft. Learn other methods to protect yourself from identity theft and keep your data out of the wrong hands.
1. Department of Defense, Department of Defense Directive, October 24, 2002, https://www.acq.osd.mil/ie/bei/pm/ref-library/dodd/d85001p.pdf
As national unemployment figures continue to remain high, you can find cybercriminals cashing in on the wave of applicants posting resumes to a range of job banks and other employment websites. Both Monster.com and USAJobs.gov were hit with a monster-size breach in the past that allowed thieves to confiscate personal information such as IDs and passwords, email addresses, phone numbers, DOBs, and more. Earlier this year, the Cyber Investigation Unit of the FBI reported an uptick in the number of employment schemes from mystery/secret shoppers to envelope stuffing to courier services scams, all involving victims that had relinquished their bank account data, social security numbers and other personal identifying information online.
In this current economic climate it’s never been more important to circulate a resume, and cybertheives have never been more interested in finding your resume to make a profit rather than finding you employment. The key to attracting legitimate employers is to recognize when and where to post your resume, and what job offers to respond to and which ones to ignore. Minimize your risks online by discouraging fraudulent businesses from approaching you.
Fact or Fiction – Posting your resume as “private” will hinder your chances employers.
Some applicants feel that by making employers take additional steps to obtain their resume, the company will quickly lose interest. But the fact is your legal name, address, phone number, work history and even your references, when posted publicly, can potentially fall into the hands of identity thieves. Most employment websites do offer a privacy feature that allows applicants to hide private information. If you should decide to post to an employment site that does not offer this option, use a disposable email address and purchase a P.O. Box at your local post office. Replace your current contact information with the disposable email and PO Box on your resume. You’ll be avoiding possible risks should the online job site have a data breach.
Fact or Fiction – Including your references when posting your resume will increase your chances of getting the job.
While it may or may not increase your chances with potential employers, the fact remains that you need to consider that your reference’s contact information is available to everyone that views or downloads your resume. You’re placing their private information at risk, which is not the best way to handle references should you need them in the future.Fact or Fiction – Always disclose your education information.
This statement falls somewhere between fact and fiction. As far as resume formats go, it’s an absolute necessity. However, you do need to consider that anyone can call your school and request your personal information without your consent. If you’re currently in college, request a FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) form from your school’s office. Once they have it on file, only legitimate institutions and businesses can have access to your information. Students under 18 will need their parents to sign the form. For more information about FERPA forms, see the U.S. Department of Education’s website.
Fact or Fiction – Every job offer is legitimate.
The fact is online job sites have sped up the hiring process considerably, but that fact alone doesn’t necessarily make them legitimate. Most businesses continue to move through the hiring process methodically, requiring one, two and sometimes three interviews before having potential employees complete a formal written application asking for personal information, work history and references. If you feel rushed to supply the employer with your SSN or drivers’ license, then consider it a big warning to walk away. Legitimate employers do not conduct background checks until the interview process is completed. Consider the following as signs or warnings that you may be looking at a fraudulent job offer.
The employer requests your bank account numbers
The position requires you to transfer money
The position requires you to open accounts with e-Bay, Pay Pal or Western Union.
Now some of this information may seem obvious, but the cybercriminal’s key to success is to rush you through the entire process before you’re even aware that you’ve been an identity theft victim. Before you give any personal identifying information, learn how to recognize the signs of identity theft.
Here are some other tips that may cause you to reconsider that too-fabulous-to-be-true, dream position:
You receive an email about a job offer but the email address does not contain the domain name of the company.
The fax or phone number does not have the same area code as the corporate phone number.
Before giving any information whether through email or the phone, play Magnum PI and conduct an online search of the company making the job offer or the person who has contacted you. If you’re still not satisfied, contact BBBonline.com or the State Attorney General’s office where the company is located.
Call the company’s HR department and verify that the person who’s contacted you on the company’s behalf is legitimate.
Fact or Fiction – A vague email job offer is often a valid offer.
Unfortunately, this is more fiction than fact for many job seekers. The rule to remember here is, if a job offer emailed to you seems very “general” or has a “vague” job description; it may not be a job offer at all. The email might contain a link that redirects you to yet another job site inviting you to post your resume, or it might be an email marketing campaign for an employment conference, seminar or class attempting to solicit money from you. Either way, it pays to think twice before replying to these responses.
Some of the more common emails may include:
Invitation to post to another job site and the invitee doesn’t bother to tell you they get a small referral fee when you do.
Promises of a “dream job”, only after you paid their fee.
Claims they have a great opportunity for you, only the recruiter can’t seem to remember the company or the job title to this spectacular position.
Invitations to self-help seminars, promising a job only after you’ve purchased their seminar.
Some email job offers are actually valid. In a recent World Privacy Forum job search study, the best job offers come within the first month of a resume being posted. If responses seem scarce, you may want to take down your resume and start over.
There is always a downside to the efficiency that modern technology provides. While it is more convenient to carry a credit card instead of bulky cash, your identity becomes vulnerable due to the information you have provided to apply for the card. More so, you become almost too exposed with credit bureaus collecting information about you when creditors ask for it. Before you know it, you could be a victim of identity theft.
How do you know that your identity has possibly been stolen? There some telltale signs that someone is assuming your identity and one of them is when your application for a credit card, loan or insurance gets rejected due to low credit score yet you are sure that you have paid your bills on time. You can also be a victim of identity theft if a debt collector demands that you pay your credit card account that has been overdue yet you never had a credit card. It is also a sign that you are a victim of stolen identity if you receive, through mail, a credit card that you have never applied for.
If you suspect that your identity is stolen, immediately report it to credit bureaus. Place a fraud alert, which will initially last for 90 days according to the provisions of the Fair Credit Reporting Act FRCA, and ask for a copy of your true credit report. You will then receive an e-mail of your rights as a victim of stolen identity from credit bureaus. You can ask for an extension of the fraud alert for up to seven years for as long as you have evidences that your identity is indeed being used by another person. You can cancel the fraud alerts anytime the case has been solved.
Once you get credit report from credit bureaus, immediately review the reports and look for fraudulent accounts and erroneous information. Report to the credit bureau, from which you receive your report, any anomaly that you see. Your notification will require the credit bureaus block the information from future credit reports and notify creditors of the fraudulent accounts. Check your credit reports manually or sign up for credit monitoring to get the names and contact details of the credit grantors of the fraudulent account and ask the bureau for those details if they have not included it in your report.
These are just the initial steps that you can take once you notice that someone else has assumed your identity. From here, you can proceed to more complicated measures such as freezing your account and asking the assistance of your local law enforcers. Identity theft can ruin your life if you do not act on it quickly. So be aware and stay on top of what’s going on with your credit reports.