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Immediate action important if target of unemployment fraud

Published: Dec. 7, 2020 at 7:39 PM CST
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Since mid-November, the Kansas Department of Labor reported that it’s stopped about 2,335 fraudulent unemployment claims each day. The fraud largely includes someone filing a claim in the name of someone else who didn’t actually file. Since the fraudulent claims began, KDOL said it’s stopped more than 157,000. All told in the U.S., the financial impact from fraudulent unemployment claims is estimated to be between $8 billion and $26 billion.

If you’ve been targeted in an unemployment scam that means at some point, your personal information fell into the wrong hands. KDOL said you need to report the fraudulent claim immediately. You can do so online at reportfraud.ks.gov. There, you will also find the next steps which start with contacting the Federal Trade Commission and reporting possible identity theft. You can do that here: Identitytheft.org. Next, you’ll want to place a fraud alert with one of the three credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian or Transunion. Whichever credit bureau you choose will automatically inform the other two. From there, you’ll need to call your bank and credit card companies to them to watch out for unusual transactions.

Following those three steps will make it easier for you to fight any additional fraud that may come up in your name at a later date. Finally, you can set up an account at socialsecurity.gov/myaccount. This is free and allows you to amke sure your yearly earnings have been accurately reported. If something is wrong, you can immediately report it there.

If you get a letter concerning an unemployment claim you didn’t make, the bottom line is, you need to act quickly and report it as soon as possible. It’s also a good idea to change the passwords on all of your various accounts.

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