As a United States armed forces member, you prioritize the nation’s safety. However, who is prioritizing the safety of your identity while you’re serving? Unfortunately, criminals often target those fighting for the country when looking to steal the identity of vulnerable individuals. Luckily, military active duty alerts can help protect you. Keep reading to learn more about these and discover how a California identity theft victim lawyer can assist you if your identity has been compromised.
What Are Military Active Duty Alerts, and How Do I Set Them Up?
For those serving in the armed forces, military active duty alerts act in a similar manner to fraud alerts placed on credit reports. It requires businesses to verify the identity of the person opening the account before doing so. This helps prevent you from becoming a victim of identity theft.
To set up an alert, you must contact one of the three major credit reporting agencies. There is no need to inform all three. When you alert one bureau, they will contact the other two.
An alert will last for a year, though you can continue to place them for the duration of your time served. Similarly, you can end the alert early if necessary.
Why Are Military Members Vulnerable to Identity Theft?
Unfortunately, military members are some of the most vulnerable to identity theft for a number of reasons.
When you are on active duty, you may be deployed at any time. As such, you may discover that you are unable to check your financial information often to look for signs of fraud. You may miss the warning signs, leaving you susceptible to having your identity compromised.
Similarly, many military members are often restationed, meaning they must move around more frequently. As such, it can be easier to miss signs of fraud.
Finally, those who are enlisted must provide a significant amount of sensitive data to the government. Unfortunately, if the government systems storing this information are breached, your information can be taken and used without your permission.
If I’ve Had My Identity Stolen, What Should I Do?
If your identity was stolen you may not know how to proceed. Once you discover the theft, you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission to report the theft. Next, you’ll need to reach out to all three bureaus, as well as the fraud divisions at any financial institution where you have an open account, such as your bank, credit card company, and anywhere you have a loan.
Finally, you must contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Identity theft can have significant impacts on your life, especially for those in the military. As such, a lawyer can help you regain control of your identity and repair your credit report. At Loker Law, our team understands how frustrating identity theft can be. Call our office today to learn how our firm will fight for you since you’ve bravely fought for our country.