Identity (ID) theft is a crime where a thief steals your personal information, such as your full name or Social Security number, to commit fraud.The identity thief can use your information to fraudulently apply for credit, file taxes, or get medical services.If you suspect you have become a victim of tax ID theft—or the IRS sends you a letter or notice indicating a problem—take these steps: Medical identity theft can occur when someone steals your personal identification number to obtain medical care, buy medication, access your medical records, or submit fake claims to your insurer or Medicare in your name.If you believe you have been a victim of medical identity theft, call the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-438-4338 (TTY: 1-866-653-4261) and your health insurance company’s fraud department.The hackers accessed Social Security numbers, birthdates, addresses, and driver’s license numbers.Equifax has launched a tool that will let you know if you were affected by the breach.
If you detect suspicious activity on your credit report due to the breach, learn how to report it immediately.
These acts can damage your credit status, and cost you time and money to restore your good name.
You may not know that you are the victim of ID theft until you experience a financial consequence (mystery bills, credit collections, denied loans) down the road from actions that the thief has taken with your stolen identity.
If you are impacted, Equifax offers you a free credit monitoring service, Trusted IDPremier.
However, you won’t be able to enroll in it immediately.