Combatting identity theft

Having your identity stolen can be both financially and emotionally distressing. If you know, or suspect, that you have been a victim of identity crime you should contact your local police on 131 444 (or if you are in Victoria contact your local station) and report any stolen identity documents or cards to the government agency or company that issued them to you.

Along with reporting suspected crime via the ACORN, there is an additional step you can take to address theft of your identity and reduce your risks going forward. iDcare is a new support centre for victims of identity crime. It is a free service that you can call to get assistance with navigating the complexities of damage to their reputation, credit history and identity.

On average, victims of identity crime will spend at least 18 hours dealing with the consequences of the incident, and victims of total “identity hijack” spending more than 200 hours. Victims of such crime can also suffer considerable psychological distress – around one in six require counselling or other medical treatment. The iDcare centre aims to address this issue.

The iDcare service, based out of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, is free for the community and anonymous. The Australian Government is providing financial support for this important service, especially as identity theft continues to be one of the fastest growing crimes impacting Australia and the rest of the world.

Further information is available on the iDCare website or you can call 1300 432 273 (1300 IDCARE) Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm for assistance.

If you are feeling distressed or upset, or know someone who is, visit our Emotional Support page where we have information and links too many of the support services available to you.

You may also be eligible for a victims’ certificate which may help you to overcome problems in your personal and business affairs caused by identity crime. If you are a victim of Commonwealth identity crime, you may apply to a magistrate for a Commonwealth Victims’ Certificate. Further information is available from the Victims of Commonwealth identity crime page.

Similar certificates are also available to victims of state and territory identity crimes in New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia.

You can also consider the following victim support services available in each state and territory:

Further advice can be found in the Government’s Protecting Your Identity pamphlet.