American Consumer Credit Counseling offers guidance to consumers on managing fallout from ID theft.
Boston, MA – March 29, 2022
Identity theft has become so common in the United States that a person is victimized every 14 seconds. The Federal Trade Commission logged 2.2 million fraud reports in 2020, while documenting that millennials represented 35 percent of all ID theft victims.
Heavy use of social media increases risk levels for identity theft by as much as 30 percent, according to the consumer information and cyber security firm Comparitech. And a survey by cyber security firm Proofpoint found that 33 percent of all Americans have experienced identify theft.
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) advises clients to take swift action as soon as they recognize signs that they have been victimized by identity thieves or other fraud. Just a few steps can make a huge difference in limiting financial losses or preventing months of red tape.
“Digital commerce, digital banking, FinTech, social media and all of the ways Americans use these tools and services means their exposure to identity theft is higher than ever,” said Allen Amadin, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “ID theft and fraud are a problem to be managed, because it will probably never be eliminated. Consumers need reliable strategies and guidance for recovering from identify theft, and that’s what we give them.”
American Consumer Credit Counseling provides guidance and support almost every day to clients who have experienced identity theft. These critical steps – when taken quickly – can significantly reduce or even prevent financial damage:
- Contact credit reporting agencies right away – Be sure to contact Equifax, Experian and TransUnion and ask to place a fraud alert on all reports.
- Contact banks and creditors – Consumers should report stolen/missing credit cards and any fraudulent activity on statements. Accounts that have been tampered with or fraudulently accessed can be closed or frozen.
- Contact the Federal Trade Commission – By filing a complaint with the FTC, consumers will receive a document verifying that they are victim. Be sure to fill out the Identity Theft Affidavit.
- Contact the local police department – File a report with the local police. A consumer’s identity should be treated like any other stolen property. Document and report the theft to begin the investigation. Get a copy of the report as evidence for re-securing identity and removing fraudulent charges.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling, call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management through credit counseling, debt management, bankruptcy counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling, and financial education concerning debt solutions. To help consumers reach their goal of debt relief, ACCC provides a range of free consumer personal finance resources on a variety of topics including budgeting, credit and debt management, student loan assistance, youth and money, homeownership, identity theft, senior living, and retirement. Consumers can use ACCC’s worksheets, videos, calculators, and blog articles to make the best possible decisions regarding their financial future. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit http://www.consumercredit.com/financial-education.aspx