Friday, April 1, 2011

Boo to You Ms. Identity Thief

You hear about it all the time on the news. People warn you about guarding your personal information. And yet when it happens to you, it's still shocking and completely defeating. I had suspected that someone may have stolen my identity a month ago. When I went to submit my tax return online, it came back as rejected because another return had already been filed for my social security number. What? I left it alone and paper filed instead, hoping that it was some glitch in the computer system.

Well, I found out yesterday that the glitch was that someone had already tried to file taxes with my social security number. Boo. The IRS agent was very nice and very helpful; he provided lots of information on where I need to go from here. But anything involving the government is going to be a slow process. Paperwork has to be filed. Fraud alerts have to be flagged. Investigations have to be made. I have to prove who I am.

The IRS agent did tell me that in cases like this, the identity thief usually just wants to work and is not after my credit. But of course, I still have to set up alerts and monitor everything. When I called the Federal Trade Commission this morning to file a report, they asked me if I would be willing to work with law enforcement in the investigation if charges were filed. Law enforcement. Investigation. Charges filed. Gross. I think I watched a Lifetime movie once on identity theft- that's what I am picturing and that makes me sad for what's ahead. (Ok- I recognize that my life is not as dramatic as a Lifetime movie...haha- but my brain can't help but think of it).

God isn't surprised by this. Nothing is outside of His knowledge or control. He knows who I am, and He knows the person who stole my identity. And He loves us both. I'm trying to pray for the right reactions and responses for this process. I would appreciate it if you joined me in those prayers for love, grace, patience, and victory.

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