Once online identity fraudsters have enough of your personal details, they can apply for credit in your name and run up debts without you knowing.
The number of victims of fraud has increased by 63% over the last 5 years, based on cases dealt with by the Experian Victims of Fraud team. In fact, 7% people of UK adults say their personal details have been used to commit fraud.*
What you can do if you suspect identity fraud
A first step is to contact Action Fraud – the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre, then inform a credit reference agency, such as Experian, as they hold your credit report.
If you are concerned that one or other of your online accounts has been compromised, then it is worth changing your password(s) to a new one as soon as you are able, and try not to use the same passwords for different accounts, especially those with financial information.
Post in other people’s names It’s great to come home and find letters waiting for you on your doorstep but when the letters turn out to be for a previous resident or even someone that has never lived at your address it can be frustrating. If it’s a demand for payment it can also be understandably worrying.
The good news is that as long as you have no financial connection to the individual (such as joint account) then their information will not affect your credit report in anyway.
This is because all credit checks are done by name, and not address, so lenders won’t see or use information relating to the other person when checking your report.
The best thing to do is to return the letter unopened to the sender clearly marked as “not at this address”. The lender should then look for their customer elsewhere.
Sadly we can’t prevent a person from using an address to apply for credit, or stop lenders from contacting their customers at an address, but by regularly returning the post the lender will stop trying to contact them. Continue reading →
You might think that a deep knowledge of all things techie might help protect people against identity theft, but according to new research from Experian* tech-savvy consumers are much more likely to be victims of ID fraud compared to other, less technologically-literate users.
The study found that the most digitally-savvy group – the most prolific users of mobile and social technology – made up almost a quarter (23 per cent) of all ID fraud victims in 2015. This group also saw the biggest increase in ID theft over the past year, rising by 16.7 per cent over the previous 12 months.
It’s Glastonbury 2016 this weekend, probably the most well-known of the many summer festivals full of revelry, music and (hopefully) sunshine.
From black-clad teenagers to an family taking a ‘different’ holiday, they all want to get away from it all and stop worrying about the daily grind.
However, if you are going to this or other summer festivals, it’s worth remembering that fraudsters like to strike while your guard might be down – so it pays to remember some tips to keep your identity safe while you rave.
While the majority of people that we helped last year were male, aged between 30-40 and living in the South-East, we found that fraud occurred across all age ranges, genders and all in areas of the country. So we all need to be aware of how we can protect ourselves against fraud.
Chris talks about Experian’s customer services and how they resolved the fraud against him, and the great service he received.
Do you try and protect yourself from the sun when you’re away? Similar steps can help protect you and your family from identity theft.
Check out our video with guest Michelle Highman , Chief Executive of The Money Charity
It’s best not to carry things with you that you don’t need, as handbags and wallets often contain lots of items containing information that can identify you personally that you just won’t need on holidays. Fraudsters just love these! Some examples are bills, receipts, out-of-date driving licences and medical prescriptions. Continue reading →