Fraudulent Unemployment Claims on the Rise in Illinois
Government officials throughout Illinois are urging residents to be on the lookout for identity theft activity related to unemployment insurance.
In an alert published by Illinois Attorney General’s office, people who have not filed for unemployment insurance are receiving letters and debit cards, loaded with funds, in the mail despite not having applied for benefits. Unfortunately, Illinoisans receiving these unsolicited letters and debit cards had their personal and financial information compromised.
The Attorney General urges those who believe their personal or financial information has been compromised to take the following steps:
- If you received a debit card in the mail that you did not request, do not activate it.
- Notify state and local authorities.
- Contact the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) at 800.814.0513 to immediately to report a false claim.
- Contact the Illinois Attorney General’s office to obtain information to take steps to guard against identity theft. You may also call the Identity Theft Hotline at 1.866.999.5630.
- Contact your local police department or Sheriff to file a police report.
- Obtain and monitor your credit report.
- You can check your credit report free once per week through April 2021 by visiting annualcreditreport.com.
- You may request a request a fraud alert by contacting one of the three major credit bureaus. Also, consider placing a freeze on your credit report to prevent further fraudulent activity.
- Review all your financial accounts closely for accuracy and dispute any unauthorized charges or debits immediately with your financial institution.
Victims of this fraud are not responsible for repaying stolen unemployment benefits and will be eligible to file for unemployment benefits if they do become unemployed.