Help for identity theft victims

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- The Federal Trade Commission estimates there are about 9 million victims of identity theft every year.

To help consumers, the FTC has released a new video called "Helping Victims of Identity Theft." It's a tool that explains not only how to recognize identity theft, but also how to report it and fix the damage that it causes. It is geared toward consumer advocates, social workers, attorneys and many others.

Just last week, 3 On Your Side profiled a Gilbert family who had their lives turned upside down after their debit card information was stolen and used in New Jersey and Africa. Their account was restored and their lives are back to normal. Thanks to this new FTC video, other victims can navigate the reporting and repair process.

"The first thing you can do is give the person a copy of 'Taking Charge,' a free booklet from the FTC," said Laura Stack, who represents the FTC. "It's a step-by-step guide that lists priorities for victims, what to do now and what to do later. It has sample forms and letters your clients can use to contact credit reporting companies, businesses or health care providers."

For more information about identity theft visit