How can your insurance help after your identity has been stolen?
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It’s a nightmare scenario: realizing identity thieves have accessed your personal information. Identity theft can come with serious consequences and place your financial future in jeopardy.
Most credit card companies and banks have protections in place to ensure you avoid the brunt of the financial impact. These protections typically only cover items purchased without authorization. You may find yourself on the hook for a number of expenses, including legal fees, the cost of replacing documents, and more.
Fortunately, your homeowners or renters insurance policy can step in to provide some relief. This coverage is typically affordable, running between $25 and $60 per year, depending on the insurer and the limit of coverage. Find out more about how identity theft insurance coverage can help you get back on your feet after an attack.
Many homeowners insurance providers offer the opportunity to purchase additional coverage (often called an endorsement or a rider) to provide relief should identity theft occur.
While identity theft coverage will not cover direct loses — like unauthorized purchases or bank loans taken out in your name — it can help you get your finances back on track.
Homeowners insurance identity theft protection often comes with the following benefits:
Many companies will offer you access to a fraud specialist who can advise you on what steps you need to take to restore your credit or otherwise repair damages done in your name. These specialists can, in some cases, even make calls on your behalf to creditors, the IRS, or other agencies and organizations.
Renters insurance may also provide assistance in the event of identity theft. Many renters insurance companies offer identity theft coverage as an endorsement. These typically carry the same protections and limits as their homeowners counterparts. Companies such as Allstate, American Family Insurance, and The Hartford offer such options for renters.
It should be noted: adding this coverage in no way protects you from having your identity stolen. Identity theft protection is merely a safeguard that may alleviate some of the financial burden after an identity theft incident. If you're looking for a way to keep your personal information from being stolen, consider keeping a close eye on your credit report and taking advantage of free protections offered by your credit card company. Bear in mind that no option is foolproof, and that vigilance is among the top tactics you can use to protect yourself.
Some insurers partner with identity theft defense companies like CyberScout or Generali Global Assistance to provide identity theft protection. These companies actively monitor your credit reports and watch for signs of foul play. While they are not able to prevent identity theft entirely, they may offer a good first line of defense.
|Identity theft coverage limit|
American Family Insurance
$15,000 per occurrence and $30,000 per policy term
*USAA provides this coverage standard on all homeowners policies.
Some insurance companies provide coverage that goes even further to protect clients from identity theft. State Farm, for instance, offers Cyber Attack Coverage, Cyber Extortion Coverage, and Fraud Coverage.
Many homeowners and renters might wonder about the true value of identity theft insurance. It’s true that no one coverage can stop identity theft from occurring — just as auto insurance can't protect against collisions — but identity theft coverage can help you regain your financial footing. With its relatively affordable cost, it may pay long-term dividends. If you are interested in identity theft coverage, feel free to call and speak to one of our knowledgeable agents about how it can help.
This article was written by one of The Zebra’s insurance experts. Each of our articles is thoroughly researched to provide accurate and actionable information. That’s insurance in black and white.®