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  1. #1

    Okay, desperately need some help, DBR folks

    So my wife just heard from the bank that someone used her social security number to open a bank account. She is there now, shutting it down but we have no idea what on earth to do next… like, a SS number being out there feels pretty bad.

    Any chance anyone here could give any advice about what to do next?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Ash View Post
    So my wife just heard from the bank that someone used her social security number to open a bank account. She is there now, shutting it down but we have no idea what on earth to do next… like, a SS number being out there feels pretty bad.

    Any chance anyone here could give any advice about what to do next?

    Thanks!
    She needs to lock all credit accounts with Transunion, Equifax and Experian ASAP. This will prevent anything new being opened.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    North of Durham
    Quote Originally Posted by aimo View Post
    She needs to lock all credit accounts with Transunion, Equifax and Experian ASAP. This will prevent anything new being opened.
    Agree. I had to do this a few years ago - I don't recall the exact mechanics of it but I think it was pretty easy to do.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2020
    Location
    Western NC
    Quote Originally Posted by aimo View Post
    She needs to lock all credit accounts with Transunion, Equifax and Experian ASAP. This will prevent anything new being opened.
    This. I did it about five years ago after a large bank (I think it was) exposed my financial information along with several million more customers. According to Consumer Reports, this is the single most effective way to combat having your finances hacked. It's not bullet proof as there is other mischief that someone can cause if they have your SS#, but the credit lock will take care of most of it.

    It will mean that if you want to take out a loan or apply for a new credit card, then you have to apply for a one time release of your credit information. It is a bit of a hassle, but not anything too restrictive. If you already have all the loans and credit cards you want/need, it isn't an imposition al all.

    One card I like, but don't use a lot is the Discover card. Every month they scan the internet for your SS# and tell you by email if they find something (or not). They also tell you your credit score monthly. If you see any significant, unexplained changes in your score, it might mean something is wrong and to look into it. Again, it is not foolproof, but I find it helpful data.

    Hope this helps, if only a little.

  5. #5
    I would also make sure that any logins to financial institutions employs multiple levels of authentication. i.e., 1) login/password and 2) verification number sent to her phone or email account. It is good practice no matter what.

    Additionally:
    a) Change all of your passwords (to passphrases if possible),
    b) Don't use the same password on any two apps/urls,
    c) Employ a password tracking app to help keep track of this stuff.

    Larry
    DevilHorse

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Quote Originally Posted by DevilHorse View Post
    I would also make sure that any logins to financial institutions employs multiple levels of authentication. i.e., 1) login/password and 2) verification number sent to her phone or email account. It is good practice no matter what.

    Additionally:
    a) Change all of your passwords (to passphrases if possible),
    b) Don't use the same password on any two apps/urls,
    c) Employ a password tracking app to help keep track of this stuff.

    Larry
    DevilHorse
    I've used 1password for awhile now and it's awesome.

    Sorry you're dealing with this. This is our world, unfortunately.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    On the Road to Nowhere
    Have you paid for an IDTheft protection service? Or have it as a perk of a credit card or bank (these tend to be bare bones but better than nothing)? If so, they should help you handle this.
    "Good sense travels on the well-worn paths; genius, never. And that is why the crowd, not altogether without reason, is so ready to treat great men as lunatics." - Cesare Lombroso

  8. #8
    Discover offers monitoring for free to everyone (even no members). Also Experian offers it to everyone after they were hacked. Sign up for all of them. Might not be a bad idea to file a police report to have it documented.

    Don’t be too worried about a SS number being out there. Honestly most are already out there. It is important to be vigilant going forward on changes to your credit score and report. The good things is, as mentioned before, most banks and credit cards offer a basic monthly level for free.

  9. #9
    Thanks all!

    Okay, froze all of the credit companies… looking at passwords now. What a pain in the rear! Thanks for all of the advice!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    WA State
    Quote Originally Posted by Section 15 View Post
    This. I did it about five years ago after a large bank (I think it was) exposed my financial information along with several million more customers. According to Consumer Reports, this is the single most effective way to combat having your finances hacked. It's not bullet proof as there is other mischief that someone can cause if they have your SS#, but the credit lock will take care of most of it.

    It will mean that if you want to take out a loan or apply for a new credit card, then you have to apply for a one time release of your credit information. It is a bit of a hassle, but not anything too restrictive. If you already have all the loans and credit cards you want/need, it isn't an imposition al all.

    One card I like, but don't use a lot is the Discover card. Every month they scan the internet for your SS# and tell you by email if they find something (or not). They also tell you your credit score monthly. If you see any significant, unexplained changes in your score, it might mean something is wrong and to look into it. Again, it is not foolproof, but I find it helpful data.

    Hope this helps, if only a little.
    A great post, Section 15. I'll second all of this. I locked my and my sweetie's credit about five years ago. Haven't noticed any imposition as we already had used our credit for home, cars, and a single credit card. Since then, we've moved to debt-free status. I am far less concerned about a financial fraud scenario - but I monitor all the accounts like a hawk.

    The only credit card? Discover. Once a month, I get an email letting me know things a hunky-dory on the internet. Not foolproof, but nothing is. I prefer to be harder target than average.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    A number of institutions that have been hacked provide free "credit monitoring" services via a third party...you'd pretty much need that. I also have a credit card, Capital One, which updates my credit score every month and alerts me to changes.

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