Also known as an initial security alert, a 90-day fraud alert notifies potential credit grantors to verify your identification before extending credit in your name.
In most cases, fraudulent activity can be detected by reviewing the accounts, inquiries and addresses that appear on a credit report. Review your report carefully for the following items:
Once you have confirmed fraudulent activity on your credit report or from another source, file an identity theft report with a law enforcement agency, typically your local police department.
Call the special telephone number listed on your credit report. You can speak with an Experian consumer assistance associate who is trained in fraud victim assistance. Experian will work with you to investigate the fraudulent information on your credit report.
Also known as an extended fraud victim alert, a 7-year fraud victim alert requires that you must be a victim and provide a police report. To request this alert, follow these steps:
Even though the fraudulent accounts created under your name were not from you, it is in your best interest to contact those businesses and let them know you were a victim of fraud. Contacting them directly may help you resolve the fraudulent information in your credit report more efficiently.
Notifying your existing account holders of your victimization is a good idea, as it may help to reduce further fraudulent activities.
If you suspect you are a victim of identity theft, here is some important contact information that can help you respond:
It is important that you check your credit reports regularly because early detection is key to minimizing the damage that mistakes and fraudulent activity can have on your credit. Experian's credit monitoring service checks your three credit reports daily and notifies you when key changes are detected. You also get unlimited online access to your credit report and score.