If you talk to someone who's been a victim, they'll tell you that repairing the damage can be frustrating and time consuming. The Consumerist has a good guide to what to do if you're a victim. Here's some of their points (except for the last one, which is my addition):
- First off, read everything on the FTC's identity theft website at www.consumer.gov/idtheft/ -- they've got a lot of great information there.
- Get your credit reports (all three) and read them carefully (line by line).
- Others will invariably have advice for you and some judgemental comments (i.e. "this is what happens when you bank online"). Expect them, and don't let them get to you.
- Be disciplined-- spend some time each day working on it until it's cleaned up (expect to spend about 100 hours in all)
- Fill out a police report, and keep copies to send to credit bureaus, collection agencies, etc...
- Be organized. Keep a separate file for each creditor.
- Write down time, date, phone #, contact information, and a synopsis of EVERY conversation you have with someone.
- Contact each credit reporting agency and dispute each and every charge. Put a statement of identity theft on each credit report.
- Follow through relentlessly.
- NEVER throw away your files. These things can come back to bite your butt years later.
- Given all the paperwork you'll have to do (and all the records you'll need, you might want to invest in a small photocopier.
HT: Sound Money Tips