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casheroo's avatar

What else can my mother do about her identity theft?

Asked by casheroo (18021 points ) December 8th, 2009

So, about two weeks ago my mother gets a call from Best Buy…someone with her name, and social security number opened an account. They were able to do it in the store, and spend money that day. Something must have seemed off, because they called my mother and she denied it…especially since it happened in NC and we live in PA.
She immediately checked her credit, and got fraud alert. Within a day, she got a call…someone at a store was trying to open a credit card in her name, saw the fraud alert and called. They apparently can’t call the cops, but my mother could (it was happening in TN)
Then the next day, it’s happening at Lowe’s, and they spent $7,000 and then called my mother to report the fraud. Nice.

So, she got a credit lock, which apparently means no credit can be given at all and she’ll be getting more calls.
GE Services seems to be failing, as they are allowing people to get the credit and then calling after money is spent.

What else can be done? Will she have to pay any of this back?
(also, how is this possible without her drivers license?!)
We think it must have occurred from my mother seeing many new doctors recently, and possibly someone in an office selling her information. I’ve warned her not to give doctors your ssn.

Is anything spent after the fraud alert was put on going to be cleared from her record? Will they always come after her? She had impeccable credit prior to this, so this is highly upsetting to her.
Any information would be great!

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9 Answers

Val123's avatar

Wow….well, my husband was a victim, but not to that extreme. Some one got ahold of some old blank checks that were for a closed account. Bought a truck in Oklahoma and a Poodle in Wichita. The authorities were looking at him all crazy for a while,till he said, “Man, if I brought a poodle home to my wife, she’d divorce me!!!” Finally they were convinced that it was, indeed, a case of ID theft.

What happened in his case was that he had to make some affidavits to the police, and stay in touch with them. Also…his entire credit history was wiped out. In his case, that was a good thing, because his credit was…not good, to put it mildly. However, in your Mom’s case, not good. Have her contact the credit departments, see what they can do. And a lawyer, if she has the money….

All in all, it wasn’t too painful for Rick….

casheroo's avatar

@erichw1504 She just got that the other day.

marinelife's avatar

She should definitely make a police report and get a record of it included in her credit files.

She should put a letter with the reason for the credit lock that was requested. Did you do that to all three of the major credit bureaus?

No, she is not liable. She can also ask at her bank for any additional recommendations they have.

marinelife's avatar

I think you will find this site very helpful.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

@Marina, Privacy Rights Clearinghouse is an incredible site. One of their best posts is about why using debit cards is a bad idea.

casheroo's avatar

Thank you for the information! She’ll be filing with the police once she gets all the paperwork together.

Val123's avatar

Let us know….

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