“Hey, honey,” KayEm said. “They denied my credit card at the grocery store.”
“Really,” I said, “Because the same thing happened to me at the coffee shop this morning. I guess I need to call the credit card company to find out what’s going on.” I hung up the phone and looked up my account online. The words, ACCOUNT RESTRICTED, flashed across the screen in bold red letters.
As I prepared to dial the toll free number, KayEm called me back.
“Did you charge $420.00 at a gas station?”
‘Um, no because I don’t own a Hummer,” I said.
“Well someone did,” she said. “The credit company just called.”
I couldn’t believe it. How did someone get my credit number? The more I thought about it, the angrier I got. I had to get off the phone with KayEm to cool off a bit.
After pacing my office for several minutes, I returned to my computer to start working on protecting my identity. I printed my credit reports to look for any other problems. Thankfully, there were none. To be safe, I placed a fraud alert with the credit reporting agencies.
I was quite aggravated by this whole chain of events. I also felt quiet violated. Someone had taken my personal information and tried to use it for their advantage. Sadly, this isn’t the first time that I’ve had this feeling. I felt it once before when someone hacked into my e-mail account.
I hope that you’re never a victim of identity theft. If you are, please follow these measures. But the best way to deter identity theft is to remain vigilant by checking your accounts frequently.
Question: Have you ever been a victim of identity theft? If so, how did you deal with it?