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Updated by April Rose Casiple Semogan on Feb 28, 2020
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How to Deal with Identity Theft in Australia

The internet has opened up doors for communication, for business and for information. Unfortunately, it has also opened up doors for crime, such as identity theft. So what should you do in case you fall victim to this cruel crime? Here is a comprehensive guide on how to handle identity theft in Australia.

Report your predicament to the authorities.

If you suspect that someone else is using your identity, don't just stand there and report to the authorities. Make sure to ask for a reference number of the case so that you can follow up with ease.

Let the authorities know if any of your cards or ID cards are missing.

It is actually legally required for you to report any suspected theft or fraudulent use of your identity information. You should let the relevant government or private sector organisation know your information has been lost or stolen.

Make sure that you have your latest copy of your credit report.

It is possible that your identity thief would use your information to apply for loans fraudulently. With this in mind, you should get a copy of your credit report. You should also let significant credit reporting agencies know that you are a victim of identity theft.

Make sure that you close all the accounts and services that are affected by the theft.

Close any social media accounts or other accounts that might be affected by identity theft. You should also cancel any products or services that you did not apply for.

Check your mailing address.

You should check with Australia Post in case there is anything that has not been placed on your mailing address even when you are expecting them.

Actively dispute any payables that resulted from identity theft.

Whether it is a notice from a financial institution or a utility provider, actively dispute any payables that resulted from identity theft. Let them know about your situation. You should explain that you are a victim of identity theft and that you did not borrow or use their services.

Get in touch with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

It would help if you got in touch with the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner for various reasons. It can be because you think your privacy is compromised or if an agency or organisation misuse your personal information.

Seek legal assistance from a criminal defence lawyer to handle your concern efficiently.

Getting your identity stolen is tough, but you should fight this crime by not giving up on your case. You will be needing some legal advice along the way, especially if someone starts using your identity to open accounts or avail services and products. The theft may damage your reputation at some point so you will be needing a lawyer to know how to go on about this.