Identity theft can be a serious issue.

One of the biggest worries for young people is to have a solid financial plan and have something come up that is out of their control. One of these issues is identity theft. This can be a worrisome and frustrating time, but having a handle on how to deal with the issue can save a person time, money and stress.

Take quick action
When a person is first made aware that their identity may have been stolen, there are some steps that they will want to make a priority.

  1. Get a copy of your credit report – One of the first ways to learn if you have an identity theft problem is to look over your credit report for abnormalities.
  2. If you locate any, contact proper authorities – If the identity was indeed stolen, speak with police (if a wallet was stolen), as well as financial institutions. They may be able to rectify the situation.
  3. Change passwords online – Changing passwords can help minimize the damage from someone stealing an identity, and could help ensure personal finance problems are only temporary.
  4. Keep financial accounts in check – Look to make sure there hasn’t been any unusual activity on bank statements.
  5. Ensure Social Security number is secure – If a person’s Social Security card was stolen, speaking with the federal government may be beneficial. Keeping this, as well as other financial documents in a safe place can help prevent this later on.
  6. Monitor social media/email accounts – Keeping an eye on a person’s social media by looking for unusual activity may also be a good idea.

If a person goes out of their way to take care of the problem as soon as they see something is wrong, it may minimize – or even eliminate – problems.

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