No One is Immune – Here are the FACTS Associated with Identity Theft:
- Consumers suffered total fraud losses of $18 billion in 2013.
- In 2013, Identity fraud incidence increased for the second consecutive year, affecting more than 13 million consumers.
- The average Identity Theft victim suffered a loss of $2,294.
- Total time spent to resolve cases averaged more than 11 hours per victim.
(Sources: FTC and Javelin Strategy & Research)
Every day transactions, like using credit and debit card machines, ATMs and making online purchases can put your identity at risk.
We hear about it on a daily basis – no one is immune. Even large financial institutions are susceptible to the potential loss of client personal information.
There are 4 Types of Identify Theft:
Unfortunately, the burden of proving and restoring your identity rests with you. Fortunately, we can help. If you find yourself a victim of this type of crime you can take actions to reduce the financial impact and prevent future events.
5 Tips On What To Do If You Become a Victim of Identity Theft
1. Keep a Careful Watch over Your Accounts
It seems like a no-brainer, but once they have your personal information, identity criminals can use it any time – even 6 or more months later.
2. Cancel Any Compromised or Suspected to be Compromised Card
If you think your credit or debit card has been compromised, cancel it immediately and request a replacement from the provider along with new PINs. Most major credit card companies provide dedicated 24X7 support and access to fraud suspicion and reporting for their cardholders.
It is also recommend that you create a directory listing in your phone containing your credit and/or debit card financial institution(s) and their fraud/theft contact information. Review these types of services in advance, and sign up for any early warning/alert system they offer.
3. Order and Review Your Credit Report
This step allows you to assure that no one has opened a new financial account in your name recently. Be sure to select a credit report service that will pull from all 3 of the major credit reporting agencies: Transunion, Equifax and Experian.
You are entitled by law to obtain a free copy of your credit report every 12 months. However, if you fall victim to Identity Theft, there will be a need to pull updated reports on a periodic basis in order to monitor potential fraudulent activity.
4. Consider Placing an Initial Fraud Alert & Freezing Credit Lines
When you think a thief may have your information, notifying the credit bureaus and placing an Alert on your file makes it harder for the thieves to open new account in your name.
Businesses will go extra lengths to verify your identity before an account can be opened when the fraud alert is present.
5. Take Pro-Active Action and Enroll in Identity Protection and Fraud Expense Services and Coverage
If you are a Farmers homeowners and/or renters insurance policy holder and fall victim to Identity Theft, you are already covered for Identity Fraud and Restoration services – at no added cost to you. You and your spouse or significant other are covered for up to $28,500 in restoration expenses and $1,500 in indemnity costs.
Farmers Identity Shield can give you some additional peace of mind for about $60 per year. This coverage can be added to your policy by endorsement providing coverage for losses due to identity theft; credit and public records monitoring, and identity or travel documents replacement.
Victims of identity theft or those who suspect they may be victims receive:
- Identity resolution services for the entire household
- 24/7 access to an advocate at Identity Theft 911® to guide the victim through the identity recovery process
- Preparation of correspondence necessary to notify all relevant parties of the fraud (credit bureaus, financial institutions, etc.)
- Creation and maintenance of a case file of all phone calls, documents and results
- Assistance in placing fraud alerts and security freezes with credit bureaus
These benefits are just another example of how Farmers and the Michael Binns Insurance & Financial Services Agency can help you and your family protect what you love and plan for your future.
Simply click the Contact Tab on the lower right side of the screen to schedule your no obligation free insurance review.