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What should I do if I am a victim of identity theft?

Report the crime to the police immediately. Get a copy of your police report or case number. Credit card companies, your bank, and the insurance company may ask you to reference the report to verify the crime.

Immediately contact your credit card issuers and advise them that you believe you are a victim of identity theft or credit card fraud. Get replacement cards with new account numbers and ask that the old account be processed as "account closed at consumer's request" for credit record purposes. You should also follow up this telephone conversation with a letter to the credit card company that summarizes your request in writing.

Keep a log of all conversations with authorities and financial entities. And follow up. Make sure that all creditors or credit bureaus have received what they need from you. Make certain they are aware that you may be a victim of identity theft or credit card fraud.

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