Collection Calls as a Result of Identity Theft
In most cases, people who receive collection calls accrued the debt themselves and have fallen behind on their payments. In some instances, however, these charges are a result of identity theft. Because people rely on technology to pay bills and make banking transactions, it is important to stay protected against hackers and Internet fraud. The best way to avoid collection agency harassment is to reduce the risk of having your identity stolen in the first place.
Consumers who use debit cards should check their account activity frequently. Every major bank has an online banking option which makes it quick, convenient, and free to monitor checking accounts. Anyone who comes across questionable or suspicious transactions on their statement should contact the bank as soon as possible.
Credit cards are better protected against fraud. Therefore, they should be used for online shopping and other Internet transactions instead of debit cards. Information shared online runs the risk of being stolen by hackers and used without your knowledge or consent. Again, people who suspect their accounts have been used fraudulently should contact the credit card company immediately.
Collection calls only begin once payments have not been made for a significant amount of time. Regular credit checks are a surefire way to stop theft in its tracks. Some criminals can open new cards in the victim’s name; in some cases, the only way a person knows that this new account exists is by seeing it on their credit report. Credit scores are very sensitive to missed payments, and even a fraudulent card can have a negative impact on your score for a while.