Identity theft happens when someone steals your personal information to commit fraud. Using your information, the fraudster will try to withdraw money from your accounts, apply for credit cards, and more. This can lead to damaged credit, unwanted bills, and a lot of time and effort spent on your part to clean up the mess.
What to Do If It Happens to You
1. Call the Bank Immediately
To report confirmed fraud or identity theft on your Bar Harbor Bank & Trust accounts, call our dispute resolution service at 866-987-1457 (US and Canada) or 972-677-5852 (if calling from outside the US or Canada), Monday through Friday, from 8:00 am-8:00 pm ET.
2. Notify Credit Reporting Agencies
You should immediately notify one of the three credit reporting agencies (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) that you are a victim of identity theft. You will need to provide your name, social security number and address; you may be required to provide other personal information upon request. These reporting agencies enable fraud alerts which can stop an identity thief from opening additional accounts in your name. Please note: contacting one of these agencies will suffice. These agencies are required to share fraud alerts with each other within twenty-four hours. These fraud alerts are typically in effect for 90 – 180 days.
Credit Reporting Agencies Contact Information
Fraud Hotline: 800-525-6285
Report Order: 800-685-1111
Fraud Hotline & Report Order: 888-397-3742
Fraud Hotline: 800-680-7289
Report Order: 800-888-4213
3. Contact All Associated Creditors
Contact all creditors with whom your name and other personal information was used fraudulently. You should contact the security/fraud department of each creditor by phone, and follow up with this in writing (be sure to include copies of supporting documents). Companies will likely ask you to fill out fraud affidavits retrievable at www.identitytheft.gov.
4. File a Police Report
A police report should be filed with your local Police Department or where the identity theft took place. Keep a copy of the report as proof of the crime.
If you have any trouble filing a police report, ask to file a “Miscellaneous Incidents” report. You could also file with the State Police or Sheriff’s Department.
It is important, that when dealing with the authorities and financial institutions, you keep a record of all conversations. This would include dates, names, phone numbers, length of time, and expenses incurred. Document all conversations you have. Send all correspondence by certified mail, return receipt requested. Keep copies of all letters that you sent and any supporting documentation. These documents may be used as evidence in the event you are able to seek restitution in a later judgment of conviction against the thief.