Note that if you legitimately open a new account, you’ll need to give the lender a heads up that your credit file is frozen and that you need to unfreeze it before they can run a hard inquiry. Experian reports that around 5% of the American population is affected by identity theft each year. If you think someone has stolen your Social Security information, it’s important to act quickly.
Sign in to your account with the Social Security Administration , and check your Social Security Statement to ensure that all of your information remains correct. If your earnings or any information is incorrect, it’s a sign that scammers are using your SSN. If you discover that your SSN is circulating on the Dark Web, immediately lock your Experian credit file from either the mobile or web app to prevent further damage. If your SSN or other personal information has been discovered on the Dark Web, you need to monitor your finances to ensure your identity isn’t stolen.
How to prevent identity theft
If you know your email account is exposed, first scan your computer for malware, change the email password, and then sign up for IDStrong’s identity monitoring to check for other exposures online. Over the past few years, hacker groups have compromised billions of user accounts through data breaches. Hackers use various techniques to steal data, including malware, spyware, phishing scams, SIM card swapping, and ransomware. Some of these fraudsters even raid people’s trash or mail looking for bank statements, bills, or tax documents to steal Information.
- Unfortunately, checking your credit history once a year is rarely enough to protect yourself from identity theft.
- When it comes to scanning the dark web for stolen data, these 10 dark web scanners are some of the best options available.
- They can also offer further assistance, such as enabling two-factor authentication before they release your credit records.
- Don’t automatically toss out mail you think is junk or was sent by mistake.
- It only means that your number is up for grabs, not necessarily that anyone is using it maliciously.
- To learn more about reporting fraud, visit the OIG’s Resources for Other Types of Fraud page.
If you know where a scammer used your SSN — such as with your bank or a company — contact them directly. Make sure you have other documentation to prove your identity and stop the thief from continuing to use your information. While some parts of your identity can be monitored manually, there’s no easy way to “check” if someone else is using your Social Security number. Commit synthetic identity theft, where they combine your SSN with other information to create a “fake” identity. Shred any documents that include your SSN or other personally identifiable information before you dispose of them.
This lets you respond to potential cases of identity theft immediately. Even if you could remove your information from one dark web location, there is no guarantee that it hasn’t been copied or posted on other sites. Instead of removing information that has been compromised, focus on changing passwords, notifying your credit card companies and ensuring the stolen data becomes irrelevant. Few things cause anxiety like finding out that your personal details have been exposed in a data breach and may be available on the dark web.
Best Dark Web Websites
Dashlane is a subscription-based password manager and digital wallet application that offers security tools for both businesses and individuals. For exact details on which services are included in every pricing tier, visit their product page here. The Firefox monitor is Mozilla’s own breach detection service. Using your email, it scans the darkweb for known breaches and notifies you if your info has been compromised. This feature lets you identify all email addresses from a given domain that were compromised in a data breach. Have I been Pwned integrates easily with 1Password, a popular password manager.
In this article, we explain how you can check securely whether your personal details have been leaked. If your SSN ends up on the dark web, you can become a prime candidate for attempted identity theft and fraud. Scammers can purchase your SSN on the dark web and use it to open new accounts and credit cards, apply for loans, activate medical insurance, or claim benefits in your name. Credit- and identity-monitoring services, which typically carry a monthly fee, can also help reveal the work of identity thieves.
Place or manage a freeze to restrict access to your Equifax credit report, with certain exceptions. Chase’s website and/or mobile terms, privacy and security policies don’t apply to the site or app you’re about to visit. Please review its terms, privacy and security policies to see how they apply to you. Chase isn’t responsible for (and doesn’t provide) any products, services or content at this third-party site or app, except for products and services that explicitly carry the Chase name.
Whats Dark Web
When private details like your full name, aliases, date of birth, mother’s maiden name, or public records fall into the wrong hands , you could become a victim of online scams or account takeover fraud. If you suspect or discover your personal information is on the dark web, change your passwords right away. Don’t repeat passwords on different accounts, and ideally choose long, complex, random ones.
You just have to contact one of the three main credit bureaus and they will notify the other two. With a fraud alert, it’s harder for someone to open new credit in your name. As forcredit monitoring,ID Watchdog Plus is limited to Equifax credit alerts. Upgrading to the Platinum plan adds triple-bureau alerts, triple-bureau annual reports, and live Equifax score tracking.
Be sure to visit to get a free copy of your credit report every 12 months from each credit reporting company. Your Discover card has a $0 Fraud Liability Guarantee, so you’re never held responsible for unauthorized purchases on your Discover card account. We monitor every purchase, every day and alert you of any suspicious transactions by email, text or phone call. If you become the victim of identity theft, consult helpful resources like Link Identity Theft government site Your fraud alerts keep you in the know about activity on your Discover Card account.
Our team is made up of diverse individuals with a wide range of expertise and complementary backgrounds. From industry experts to data analysts and, of course, credit card users, we’re well-positioned to give you the best advice and up-to-date information about the credit card universe. You also may fall victim to new account fraud, in which the criminals open up new accounts in your name. Account takeover fraud is “by far more prevalent, because it’s easier to perpetrate,” says John Breyault, vice president of public policy, telecommunications and fraud at the National Consumers League. Policies provide up to $1,000,000 in compensation for stolen funds. Additionally,IdentityWorkscan reimburse you for child care and other expenses incurred as a result of spending time on identity restoration.
The best credit monitoring services that can help you spot fraud early
You might need a VPN at home to help protect your online privacy and stay safe from hackers. Learn how to create a strong password to help keep your information safe and secure. The standard going rate for an SSN is $3 to $4, and that price can escalate to around $8 for a full personal profile or “fullz,” which includes more detailed information. Report any fraudulent activity connected to your SSN to the SSA immediately.