What to do if your identity is stolen
Identity fraud is the fraudulent practice of using another person's name and personal information in order to obtain credit. An identity thief gets your personal information by stealing your post, using your lost or stolen credit cards, or by involving you in telephone and email scams - then they use your details to steal your identity.
The post is one the most vulnerable areas of your life where identity fraud is concerned. 66% of identity fraud cases in 2015, were because of ‘present address fraud’. This is where someone living at the same address (often flats with communal postal delivery areas) steals your mail.
16% of cases were due to ‘previous address fraud’. This is when the criminal uses your name and a previous address to take over your identity. And 15% of cases involved a fraudster forwarding mail to a collection address.
Other popular identity fraud methods include:
It doesn’t take much to get hold of enough information to steal your identity. A stray envelope, an old catalogue, a bank statement or the contents of your wallet are just a few ways that divulge your personal information. A criminal can then pose as you and commit identity fraud by borrowing money and running up debts in your name.
Here are the top items that identity thieves are looking for:
Regularly checking your credit report is recommended by the Home Office as an effective method of protecting yourself from identity fraud.
Top tips to avoid identity theft include:
We regularly monitor your Experian Credit Report for certain changes which could be fraudulent activity - looking for things like new accounts, new applications for credit, and existing accounts falling into arrears. If we spot any of these changes we’ll send you a text or email alert to let you know.
We monitor your personal details for you across the web – and alert you if we find possible misuse. This monitoring is 24/7, and if we find your details being traded or used where they shouldn’t be, we’ll send you a text or email.
Support from the Victims of Fraud Team
If you’re a victim of fraud, CreditExpert customers are assigned an individual case worker. You tell them which accounts and applications are fraudulent and they’ll investigate and contact the companies and lenders on your behalf.
Once it’s all resolved we’ll continue monitoring your report for up to 12 months (as long as your still a member of CreditExpert) for any changes which we think might be fraudulent, and we’ll give further advice and support to help protect you in future.
Experian CreditExpert provides more than just your credit report, including: