The attorney general recommends that you take the following steps if you suspect you are a victim of identity theft:
- File a police report with your local law enforcement agency and keep a copy of that report. Many banks and credit agencies require such a report before they will acknowledge that a theft has occurred.
- Contact the three primary credit reporting bureaus to have a security alert or freeze placed on your report.
- Request a copy of your credit report and review it for unauthorized account activity.
- Report unauthorized charges and accounts to the appropriate credit issuers and credit bureaus immediately by phone and in writing. Cancel the accounts.
- If your wallet or purse is stolen, immediately cancel your credit and debit cards and get replacements. Put a stop payment on all lost or stolen checks.
The Federal Trade Commission
(FTC) has authority to prosecute identity theft at the federal level. Report ID theft to the FTC by calling 877.IDTHEFT (877.438.4338).
If you are a victim of identity theft, you may get a call from someone posing as a bank representative or law enforcement official requesting your personal information under some pretext. Do not give out your information - you have no way of knowing who is really on the other end of the line. If another person is arrested and falsely uses your name or other personal information, Texas law allows you to have your information expunged from the arrest record. Contact the Crime Records Service at the Texas Department of Public Safety
(DPS) by calling 512.424.5258.
Protecting Your Identity
Identity theft can happen to anyone. Previously, criminals stole your wallet for your cash. Now they want your wallet to steal your good name. Protect yourself and your identity.
Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal identifying information without your permission. This information may include your name, address, driver's license number, Social Security number, mother's maiden name, birth date, or financial information such as your bank account, credit card, or PIN number.
An identity thief may obtain your identifying information by stealing credit card applications, bank statements, or checks from your trash or mail, finding your lost or stolen wallet or purse, hacking your credit card number from a corporate database, or stealing your information from inside a company that holds it.
An identity thief may use your information to obtain new credit cards, open checking accounts, get a bogus driver's license or Social Security card, make long distance calls, apply for a job, or make purchases using your bank account or credit card. ID theft is a felony crime and should be reported to your local law enforcement agency.
Because of the nature of the crime, you may not realize your identity has been stolen until you are denied credit, turned down for a job, or sent a bill for purchases you did not make. By that time, your good name and credit history may be in ruins. Rebuilding good credit in the aftermath of identity theft can take months or even years.
Telemarketing No Call Lists
Texas No Call
P. O. Box 313
Walpole, MA 02032
866.896.6225 toll free
Federal No Call List
888.382.1222 toll free
Federal Trade Commission, Texas office location in Dallas (covers all of Texas)
100 North Central Expressway, Suite 500
Dallas, TX 75201