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Blog > Identity Theft > How to Report Identity Theft to Credit Bureaus
 July 08, 2022

How to Report Identity Theft to Credit Bureaus

Woman reporting ID theft to credit bureaus
The rule “thou shalt not steal” is ignored by cybercriminals. Unfortunately, identity theft is a booming business – it’s up by over 400% since 2010.

The most common form of identity theft is when people use someone’s Social Security numbers and other personal identifiable information and then create bogus bank and credit card accounts in the victim’s name.

If you’re the victim of identity theft, you probably want to know how to report identity theft to credit bureaus. The reporting process can seem intimidating on top of the pain and financial hardship caused by identity theft. The good news is that reporting it is actually quite straightforward. Sure, it takes some time, but it’s important to act as quickly as possible to keep anyone else from trying to open accounts in your name.

If you’re the victim of identity theft, you probably want to know how to report identity theft to credit bureaus. The reporting process can seem intimidating on top of the pain and financial hardship caused by identity theft. The good news is that reporting it is actually quite straightforward. Sure, it takes some time, but it’s important to act as quickly as possible to keep anyone else from trying to open accounts in your name.

Do you have to report identity theft to credit bureaus?

No, you don’t have to report identity theft to credit bureaus if you don’t want to – but if you know that there’s been fraud involving your personal info, reporting that fraud to Equifax, Experian and TransUnion can limit further fraudulent activity.

You have two options: initiating a fraud alert or a credit freeze.

A fraud alert forces creditors to verify your identity before opening credit, while a credit freeze cuts off access to your credit score and credit reports until you.” In other words, with a credit freeze, it’s unlikely for new credit accounts to be opened by you or someone else in your name because the three major credit bureaus block access to your data which is needed for most credit accounts to be created – from car dealerships to credit card companies and everyone in between.

Is starting a credit freeze a big step? Yes. But if you’ve been a victim of identity theft, it’s a better, safer option than a fraud alert. FYI, a credit freeze doesn’t protect you from identity-related matters that don’t require a credit check. For example, someone may still be able to get medical care in your name or attempt to file a fraudulent tax return using your information.

The good news is that a credit freeze won’t affect your credit score and, like a fraud alert, it’s a free service.

Three steps to help report ID theft to credit bureaus

The process can usually be broken down into two easy steps plus one “bonus” step:

  1. Contact each of the three major credit bureaus to inform them of the fraud and give them your personal identifiable information – name, address, SSN, etc. You’ll also need to provide them with a valid photo I.D.

Equifax: 1-800-349-9660 or equifax.com

Equifax

P.O. Box 105139

Atlanta, GA 30348-5139

Experian: 1-888-397-3742 or experian.com

Experian

P.O. Box 2002

Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289 or transunion.com

TransUnion

P.O. Box 2000

Chester, PA 19016

  1. Initiate credit freeze paperwork with all three credit bureaus.
  2. Get professional identity theft protection with a world-class service like IDShield.

This third step is important .. IDShield helps protect you against online thieves, helps you catch potential fraud early and offers best-in-class personal data monitoring, credit monitoring and privacy and reputation management. Customers can receive information on how to become better at recognizing the signs of identity theft and the benefits of credit monitoring. IDShield prides itself on its highly qualified team of professionals, including licensed private investigators,  who won’t give up until your identity is restored. Our industry-leading Licensed Private Investigators will do whatever it takes as long as it takes to help recover and restore your identity to its pre-theft status. Sign up today for either a 1 or 3 credit bureau monitoring plan plus one-on-one consultation.

IDShield offers a free trial, so there’s no risk. It’s your all-inclusive solution to identity protection, credit monitoring, reputation management and identity restoration.

Don’t just report identity theft to the credit bureaus

In addition to reporting identity theft to the credit bureaus, you should also:

  • Get in touch with each business where an account was fraudulently opened.
  • Keep copies of all documents and make sure to keep records of your communications in writing.
  • Fill out an FTC Identity Theft Report for the Federal Trade Commission.
  • File a report with law enforcement.
  • File a report with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

We hope that this has been helpful. Stay safe out there!

IDShield is a product of Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc. (“PPLSI”). PPLSI provides access to identity theft protection and restoration services. For complete terms, coverage, and conditions, please see an identity theft plan. All Licensed Private Investigators are licensed in the state of Oklahoma. This is meant to provide general information and is not intended to provide legal advice, render an opinion, or provide any specific recommendations.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you file a police report for identity theft?

Yes, you can, and should. Many credit card companies, financial institutions and debt collectors require a police report when you contact them about fraud.

What is the process for filing a police report for identity theft?

First, you need to file a theft report with the Federal Trade Commission at
www.identitytheft.gov. Then, with that in hand, file a police report.

Can you file a police report for identity theft online?

You can, if your local law enforcement has an online portal for ID theft. If not, check with your state attorney general’s office to learn how to file a police report for identity theft online.

What information do you need when filing a police report for identity theft?

Make sure you have your FTC theft report, along with government issued photo ID, proof of address, and evidence of the fraud.

Do police investigate identity theft?

They do, most particularly, when:

  • You know the person who committed the fraud.
  • You have information that could aid a local investigation.

IDShield has different plans tailored to suit your specific needs. Choose the one that’s right for you.

ESS

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