Help me stay a step ahead of the identity thieves!

About a year and a half ago, my wife closed her Credit Union account.

About six months ago, they sent us a letter saying that a computer containing customer databases had been stolen from one of their offices.

She placed a short-term security warning with all three credit bureaus, requesting live contact at home before approving any extensions of credit. She also checks her credit report each month for suspicious activity.

Since then, we have received two notices from a well-known computer company regarding their denial of her request for an online computer purchase, due to inability to reach her at home. A call to the company revealed that the false purchaser had used slightly incorrect versions of her SSN and phone number, which turned out to be existing errors in her credit bureau info. The computer company said theses thieves will often order a system and change the shipping address at the last minute, or acutally show up at your house to intercept the delivery.

The police have been notified, and the security notice at the credit bureaus has been extended to seven years. Our bank refuses to attach any sort of notice to her accounts, due to fear of liability should a teller fail to heed them. We are obviously considering a move to a different bank.

In yesterday’s mail, we received notices from our cell phone company thanking us for adding an additional line (in a different area code) with every bell and whistle imaginable. The number is included, and in the space of the ten days since it was added, over 900 peak hour minutes have been used. The line has been shut down as of yesterday. On Monday, we may be able to find out from their fraud unit where the phone was bought, which may, who knows, lead to an ID. Should that happen, you can believe Barry Bonds will have nothing on MY batting average.

So far, we know they have her information, which could of course lead to physical burglary.

We know they have her SSN, which of course leads to its own potential nightmares.

They could have found out our cell phone company from her credit report (which it appears they have already seen), which lists them by name as a continuous viewer, and, due to the fact that a phone was purchased and a line added, probably have a fake ID in her name.

Fortunately, our bank accounts are not listed in the credit report.

Can anyone provide factual accounts of what other nightmares may await us, so I can try to head them off at the pass?

So much for all that advice about, “just be yourself.” :rolleyes: