You should be able to shop or pay bills online without worrying about your personal information being stolen. However, that is not the social environment in which we currently live. We are surrounded by cyber criminals who are waiting for any opportunity to steal our personal information.
Cybercriminals who gain access to a person’s private information can cause that person to experience financial ruin. A Baltimore identity theft attorney from Berger Montague can help consumers lessen the blow and assist you in overcoming your identity theft incident.
Signs of Identity Theft on Your Credit Report
To become a victim of identity theft, your personal information must be illegally obtained from another person for financial purposes. Hackers can use your data like your Social Security number and date of birth to access your financial accounts.
Once your personal information is exposed to this type of access, hackers and criminals can open new accounts and apply for utilities, loans, and other forms of credit in your name.
One of the most dangerous aspects of identity theft is that these actions can happen without your knowledge. However, there are signs that identity theft may be occurring that you can determine from your credit report.
Unauthorized Activity From Your Bank Account
One of the critical signs of identity theft is any unauthorized expenses from your bank account. If there are any expenses that you do not recognize, you may want to contact your financial institution and alert them of the expenses. Afterward, you may want to consider closing the account.
Unauthorized Activity on Your Credit Card
Another common sign of identity theft is seeing unauthorized activity on your credit card. Hackers will authorize small expenses to test whether the credit card is active. Like your bank account, you want to contact your financial institution and alert them of fraudulent expenses.
You may also want to contact one of three top credit reporting agencies and notify them of potential identity theft.
Bills and Financial Statements Missing in the Mail
Another common sign of identity theft is missing bills from your mail. Once hackers gain access to your data, they can use that data to redirect your mail to whatever address they choose. Hackers then use the information from your mail to continue to open new accounts in your name.
Loss of Cell Phone or Utility Service
Another sign of identity theft is the loss of cell phone service or another utility service. Hackers who access your utility bills can open up new accounts, use your upgrade options, or transfer your service to their new upgrade.
Denial of Your Medical Claims
Being denied a medical claim is another common sign of identity theft. Hackers are known for gaining access to and using the medical services under your health insurance policy.
Suppose you receive an invoice for medical services that you did not authorize, or your medical claim is denied to reach your benefit limits. In that case, that is a sign that identity thieves have access to your health insurance.
A Warrant Out for Your Arrest
Another form of identity theft involves a person offering their personal information to police officers when that person has been arrested. When that person gives the police officer your information, you are at risk of obtaining an arrest warrant in the near future.
To clear your name from this type of identity theft, you will have to contact your nearest law enforcement agency and prove that you are not the person who was arrested.
When You Might Not Be a Victim of Identity Theft
Identity theft is very real and very scary. But while it might be a consumer’s first thought when they see an error come back on their credit report or background check, that’s not often the case. These errors are often due to negligent methods on the part of a credit reporting agency or background check company, not because of an identity thief.
Knowing how to determine the real situation can be challenging. The best way to investigate what might’ve happened is to work with a lawyer experienced in technology, privacy, and data breaches. If it turns out that a reporting error was made, it’s likely that the background check company or credit reporting agency violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
You want your information fixed and your identity back, but you may not realize how valuable your case truly is. You have federal rights under the FCRA, and our consumer protection attorneys can uphold them.
Among your rights, you can hold the liable party responsible for any monetary losses you’ve endured as a result of the error. And we can take them to court if necessary.
Identity Theft Federal Legislation
As a victim of identity theft, it can seem as if you are powerless against this type of crime and that there are no protections. However, several types of identity theft federal legislation offer protection for you. Congress passed the Identity Theft Enforcement and Restitution Act, which increased the amount of restitution that you are entitled to recover.
You can protect your financial assets through this Act once you immediately report your identity theft incident to the proper authorities. Reporting your identity theft incident to the proper authorities can help protect you against future harm from your incident.
How an Identity Theft Lawyer Can Help by Bringing a Lawsuit in Baltimore
Handling an identity theft incident by yourself can seem overwhelming for most people. For this reason alone, you need the expertise of an identity theft attorney who can bring litigation in Baltimore. An identity theft lawyer has the necessary experience and negotiation skills to protect you from suffering from the consequences of massive debt.
Filing a report with the proper authorities will help to increase the chances of catching the perpetrator. Working with an identity theft attorney to bring an action in Baltimore will help protect you from the legal repercussions moving forward.
Create an Identity Theft Recovery Plan
One way that an identity theft lawyer can help you is by creating an identity theft recovery plan. Having a plan to help eliminate the consequences of your identity theft incident can help you feel more confident in resolving the issue. An identity theft lawyer can lay out the particular steps you need to take and help you collect the proper documentation.
Place a Freeze on Your Accounts
One of the steps that an identity theft lawyer can assist you with is placing a freeze on your compromised accounts. Establishing a freeze on your accounts will prevent identity thieves from continuing to open new accounts in your name.
Credit reporting agencies will also be notified about your freeze on your credit history and will not be allowed to view your credit history without your permission.
Why Berger Montague Is the Firm to Choose
With 65 lawyers representing clients nationwide, including from our nearby office in Washington, D.C., we routinely win settlements for our clients for more than $100,000. In fact, since 1970, we’ve won over $36 billion in verdicts and settlements from class action and individual lawsuits.
Our attorneys are familiar with data breaches, email phishing, social media scams, and other tactics used by cybercriminals. We’re also intimately familiar with consumer rights. As the best FCRA firm in the country, we can also investigate background check companies and credit reporting agencies to identify their liability for errors in your personal information.
You can count on our elite, well-resourced team at Berger Montague to guide you through the process of fixing your personal information, repairing the integrity of your identity, and obtaining the compensation that you deserve.
Call an Identity Theft Lawyer Today
Has an identity thief compromised your personal information? An identity thief lawyer in Baltimore that can take action will help to protect you against future harm from the incident. We can also hold negligent companies and agencies liable for any credit report or background check errors that led you to believe your identity was stolen.
At Berger Montague, we provide free consultations. We also represent clients on a contingency fee basis. We only take a portion of your settlement or court award. And we take nothing if we lose your case. In a victorious FCRA case that goes to court, the defense will be responsible for covering litigation costs and attorney fees.
If you or a loved one has been victimized by identity theft, it’s in your best interest to speak with an identity theft lawyer. Call our office, or submit our contact form to schedule a consultation today.