If you ever lose your wallet, you will likely be stressing out due to the amount of sensitive information that goes along with it. Not only are you going to be exposed to potential credit card fraud, but also identity theft. In this article, we will be focusing strictly on what you should do as soon as you realize you have misplaced or lost your wallet and how to get brand new cards as fast as possible.
So You Lost Your Wallet…
- Cancel and Freeze All Your Credit Cards
The most important step to take first is to cancel and/or freeze all of your credit cards. A lot of credit card companies make this step as easy as possible nowadays to prevent misuse of your credit cards. If you lose and/or misplace your wallet, all you need to do is freeze all of your credit cards. You want to do this as soon as you realize that your wallet is missing because it can provide you with the best chance to avoid misuse and unauthorized use of your credit cards. To do this, you will want to either call and contact the credit card companies that you have cards with or head to their website and place a freeze on the cards. A lot of the companies make this easy nowadays as noted above. Many have the ability to freeze your card while you sort out whether or not you misplaced it, lost it, or had it stolen. This is going to give you the time that you need to potentially find it or proceed to follow the other steps without having to worry about it being used by someone else.
- File A Police Report
Another big thing that you are going to want to do is be sure to call the police and file a police report. You can visit your local police station as well. You want to do this when you lose and/or have your wallet stolen because it is going to help you down the line if someone does happen to attempt to use your credit cards without permission and/or steal your identity. This is a great way to minimize the hassle that you might have to deal with to prove that it wasn’t you that used your credit card on certain transactions.
- Order Replacements
Once you have concluded that you have indeed lost your cards, you are going to want to order the replacements that are needed. You can do this by contacting your credit card company, explaining to them that you lost your cards and that you need brand new ones. They will replace your card, sometimes even with one-day or expedited shipping. This is going to get you back to using your brand new cards as quickly as possible and you shouldn’t worry about being without your card for a significant period of time.
- Change All Of Your Subscriptions and Online Accounts
Another big thing that you are going to want to do when you lose your wallet and get your credit card(s) replaced is to make a list of all of your subscriptions and online accounts and make the appropriate changes to your brand new card(s) once they arrive. This is going to allow you to avoid any interruptions of service because you will promptly switch your payment to the brand new cards that you receive. This is an important step because you don’t want to end up with missed payments due to getting brand new credit card replacements.
- Check Your Account
Another big thing that you are going to want to do is go through your account to make sure that your card was not used during the period at which it was compromised. You want to go through your statements to ensure that no one made unauthorized charges on your account. By ensuring that no one made unauthorized charges on your account, you should be able to minimize the chances that you miss any fraudulent charges. If you suspect any charge or see a charge on your account(s) that were not made by you, all you have to do is contact your credit card company, let them know, and file a chargeback. They will be able to investigate and remove the charge accordingly.
- Set Up Alerts
You want to set up spending alerts on all of your credit cards. Ideally, you will set alerts for any spending on your card at all. That way, you will be able to receive alerts anytime and every time your card is used. This is going to be a great way to better prepare yourself next time. That way, you will know exactly when and where your card is being used and how it is being used. You can have these alerts come via text message, app notification, or even email depending on your preference. It is a great way to set yourself up to better protect yourself in case you happen to misplace or lose your wallet again.
Overall, there is a lot that you are going to want to do when it comes to protecting yourself after you lose your wallet. By following the different tips above, you should be able to better protect yourself by limiting the exposure that you have. Not only do you want to place an immediate freeze on all spending on your accounts, but you want to request a brand new card and report the lost social security card to the local police. This is going to give you a fallback option if there are unauthorized charges made on your account. You can point to the date at which you noted losing your card as proof that you did not make those charges. Losing your wallet is certainly something that you want to avoid, but it doesn’t have to stress you out too much. By following the tips above, you should be able to avoid the significant hassle that comes along with it.