Are you a victim of identity theft? This is one of those factors that may ruin your credit record. It is hard to find out who has performed actions to ruin your credit. However, once you are informed that your credit has been damaged, it is time to fix it.
Theft is performed by stealing your identity. Someone might have performed a faulty credit activity in your name or maybe your credit card account had been hacked. Whatever the reason may be, fixing a bad credit is essential at the earliest. Here you can learn some easy ways through which you can fix your credit after a theft.
What to Identity Thieves Do?
Some may be wondering that what is an identity theft or how does it take place? This goes without a question that such occurrences leave you into a state of discomfort and anger. You may be curious to find answers to all your queries.
Identity Theft is the establishment of new credit in your name. Thieves procure your identity and use to take borrowings and open credit accounts. They may also use your credit card to the maximum credit limit. Maybe your credit account has been used to take cash advances. If you notice such activities in your account which have not been performed by you then it is time to report the theft and repair your credit.
How to Recover After Identify Theft
Anyone can be a victim of theft. It is important to take these steps once you get to know that your credit record has been hampered due to theft.
Fix your Credit Report
In order to fix your credit report, you need to demand it from the credit bureau. Once you notice that your credit report has errors, prepare the list of data that is not appropriate. The credit details and personal information on the report must be provided a special attention. According to studies, there is over 70 percent of consumer credit reports that contain an error. Certain credit reports are found with multiple errors.
We are sure that you do not desire to let your credit report counted among those faulty ones. Once you are informed of identity theft, your first step should be towards check the reports for mistakes. Once you find the error report it. If you report on time there could the council would take measures to improve your credit score. Here are some ways through which you can file a correction on your credit report.
Use a Certified Mail for sending the Letter
After an identity theft, you need to take actions as quickly as possible. A certified mail is handy for send a letter that contains matter towards improving the score. This provides you a tracking number through which you can get to know whether the letter has reached the credit bureau. Repair Mantra recommends you to keep the original copies of the credit report and send the copies with the mistakes highlighted.
A Letter of Dispute
Another step to fix your credit after identifying theft is writing a letter of dispute. You are required to create your own letter instead of downloading it from the web. Your letter should be personalized and professional.
In order to prepare the letter of dispute, the victim must describe the faulty credit entry and also provide information about the theft. If you have filed a police report, you can consider including a copy of the report in the letter. This can attract the attention of the CRA and your credit record would be improved.
Get in touch with the Financial Institutions
The Financial Institutions that are affected by fraud must be given an explanation. You need to call your lenders in order to let them know that you are affected by identity fraud. This is a criminal act and should be taken seriously. You need to get in touch with the authority in charge and file a case against the person who stole your identity.
Send the financial institutions that are affected by fraud a copy of the police complaint reports and incorrect entries. This might minimize the effect of the identity theft.
Maintain a Record of Everything
After you have provided a letter of credit report and contacted with the affected financial institution it is important that you keep all the copies of the letters, complaints and other documents that are used in the process. This is an important thing in the procedure in the identity theft procedure. The letter that you have sent to the credit report agencies, banks, and the police report might prove useful.
For more assurance, you can even maintain a call log record of what people and authorities have informed you. Use an organizer to schedule all the records. This can prove handy anytime as identity theft happenings can arise the demand for these documents.
Place a Fraud Alert
If you are a victim of fraud or identity theft then it is crucial to place a fraud alert. This is an alarm put for credit lenders so that they take measures to protect you. While accessing a credit card or any such service you will be asked to answer some security questions which would be set by you. You can remove the fraud alert anytime you wish. So, do not worry while activating.
Identity theft is a criminal offense, which needs to be dealt with the police. However, you can prevent such happenings by activating a fraud alert every time you feel that your credit is in danger.
Now when you have taken all the necessary actions to report the identity theft your credit must be repaired to some extent. In some cases there are multiple accounts opened by the thieves, therefore such activity would completely damage your credit. You would need to completely rebuild your credit profile from scratch.
Close all accounts that were hit by the theft and apply for new credit cards and loans. You can take assistance from a professional if you find it difficult to do it yourself.