JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A Jonesboro man found out his identity was stolen after his mail went missing for more than a month.
Kenny Black said it's been a nightmare trying to get everything straightened out.
In June, Black realized he was missing several bills he always receives in the mail. "July came and once again we didn't get a bill," Black said.
After making some calls and visiting the post office, Black said he finally talked to his mailman.
"Mr. Black, we've been forwarding your mail to another address," Black said, repeating what his mailman told him.
Black said he immediately told the mailman that he didn't fill out any change of address form.
Worried this was a crime, Black went to the Jonesboro Police Department to file a report.
According to the incident report, Black told police his mail was being forwarded to another state and the suspect may have access to his bank records and credit card information.
Paul Holmes, public information specialist with JPD, told Region 8 News using a change of address form to steal someone's identity is not something they hear of often.
"They will come up with a new way or a new wrinkle on an old scam," Holmes said.
Filling out a change of address form isn't difficult. It can be done at the post office or online.
Holmes said because criminals will go to all lengths to get your information you must be vigilant.
"Pay attention to your credit report, pay attention to your mail, pay attention to any request of your personal information via the telephone, via email," Holmes said.
Black immediately put a stop to the change of address request and has had to cancel credit cards as well as call individual businesses to make sure he wasn't late on any payments.
Despite the hassle, Black said his credit bureau told him it's good he caught this so soon.
"They are trying to get as much information on you, Mr. Black, as they can get and pretty soon once they get enough they can steal your identity," Black said.
What Black said is the most frustrating, though, is not knowing exactly how this happened.
"Wish I could give some advice to people on how to prevent this, but I mean, it just happened, the mail just started disappearing," Black said. "There wasn't really anything we could have done about it."
Black has gotten most of their mail back.
"We are not missing anything at this time," Black said. "We've checked our bank accounts, our checking, and our savings. My wife and I are both members of teacher retirement so they have not gotten into any of that. Maybe we caught it in time."
Black said he did find out two fraudulent credit cards were opened in his name but got them shut off before anything was charged.
Holmes said if you notice something wrong with your mail or bank statements go to the Jonesboro Police Department to report it.
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