This post is was originally published on The College Investor
You are ready to go back to school and so you go to apply for a student loan with the best rate.
Someone already took out money in your name and now you, the real you cannot take out any more money for school.
Education is expensive enough when you take out loans on your own!
And now you have to deal with a mess somebody made when you were not looking?
Unfortunately, student loan identity theft is a real problem that happens and continues to happen. It’s hard to prevent because so much personal information about you is already “out there”.
In today’s post, we will go over how you can prevent this from happening in the first place and what you can do if you find out someone took out student loans in your name.
8 Tips For Protecting Your Identity
It is never too early and you can never be too cautious when it comes to protecting your identity from thieves.
Taking these steps to keep your personal information safe is the best move when it comes to protecting your identity from malicious people.
Life happens and sometimes these malicious people do in fact end up stealing other people’s identities and pulling stunts like taking out student loans.
Why would somebody take out student loans if it isn’t in their name?
Who wants to get a degree that is not in their name?
The truth is, while federal loans are disbursed to student to use for educational expenses, these identity thieves can in fact take the money and use it for other purposes.
So what can you do?
Here’s an outline of the steps you need to take immediately you find out someone took out student loans in your name.
Note: The IdentityTheft.gov website has an excellent system that will create a personalized recovery plan based on the report you give them. They also have a team you can chat with online Monday through Friday 9am-8pm EST.
If you plan on taking out student loans yourself for school, these steps will help you get started with the recovery process so you can do so.
However, we do realize that it could be a long journey of trying to clear your name and getting your credit straightened out.
Although grueling, I will encourage you to stay the course until it is all cleared up so you are not paying for someone else’s mistake for the rest of your life.
Being a victim of any type of identity theft is nothing to ever wish on anyone.
Student loan debt that was not incurred by you can be a stickier situation and have a long-lasting effect on your credit if you don’t act immediately.
You are moving in the right direction if you take the steps outlined above – immediately.
Have you been a victim of Student Loan Identity Theft? What did you do to clear things up?