What to do about Identity Theft

If you have had personal information stolen, for example, your wallet ot documents containing your name, address etc. from your home, then you may be worried about becoming a victim of identity theft. You may be asking yourself – “What will my identity be used for?”

The answer to this question is somewhat scary, and the best way to limit the amount of damage that can be caused, is to act fast and report the loss. You may not notice the signs of identity theft for sometime, but if things have gone missing and they contain data that is personal to yourself, then you may become a victim.

If your name and address has been stolen along with a date of birth, then you could find that your identity may be used to apply for credit cards or loans, and these will be used to purchase goods and services. This can cause you to have massive debts and this in turn, will seriously destroy your credit rating. The other thing that can occur in cases like this, is that mail to your address may be redirected with your identity and therefore you will not recieve the goods that have been purchased. Not only that, but any mail that you are expected, whether it be bills or personal letters from family and friends, will not go to your address. Think how bad this could be if you are expecting a check book or credit card? That, combined with the Pin that will also not turn up at your house, can also cause massive debts and have a negative effect on your credit score.

Your identity can also be used to obtain loans, mortgages and even finance or credit for large goods such as cars or household equipment. If these debts are not paid, then you are at risk of losing your house, especially if the loan has been secured against your home. That is why it is essential to keep records of everything and also to act fast if you believe documentation has been stolen.

Another way in which your identity can be used is for criminal activity. Imagine if someone had identity with your name etc. on it. If they were to put themselves in a criminal act, such as burglary or even murder, then your identity would be used and you would therefore be liable for this crime. Failed court apearances would lead to a warrant for an arrest issued in your name, and you would have no idea until the worst had happened. This could have a seriously negative effect on your life, and could lead to lost employment, homes and even could wreck personal relationships with family and partners.

Along the same lines as criminal activity, your identity could also be used to blackmail you. If someone had used your identity for something bad, then the person that did the bad deed in your name could try to blackmail you out of money amongst other things. They could also use your identity to aid in the crimes that accompany illegal immigration and also terrorism.

Although these are fairly frightening things to have to come to terms with, the more you wise up about identity theft, the more likely you are to be able to prevent it from happening. Keep your data and personal information safe and you reduce the chances of this crime happening to you.