A fraud alert is a statement on a credit bureau report to help consumers who may have been a victim of identity theft.
- A fraud alert is intended to stop an identity thief from using your personal information to open fraudulent credit accounts in your name.
- When a creditor or business reviews a credit report in which a fraud alert has been placed, they verify the applicant’s identity and may contact you. Make sure your contact information is current on your credit report.
An initial fraud alert, which covers 90 days, is appropriate if your wallet has been stolen or if you suspect your identity has been or will be compromised.
- You will be entitled to one free credit report from each of the three nationwide credit bureaus.
An extended fraud alert, which lasts seven years, is for a consumer who knows that he or she is a victim of identity theft.
- You will be required to provide the credit bureau with a copy of an identity theft report, such as a police report, and appropriate proof of your identity.
- You will be entitled to two free credit reports within 12 months from each of the credit bureaus.
- The consumer reporting companies will remove your name from marketing lists for prescreened credit offers for five years unless you ask to add your name back.
Credit reporting agencies
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374‐ 0241
P.O. Box 9554
Allen, TX 75013
Fraud Victim Assistance Division, P.O. Box 2000
Chester, PA 19016