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What to do if your Purse or Wallet is Stolen in the UK
You turn away for just a minute, and someone steals your purse or wallet. The next minute your phone starts blowing up with notifications from your credit card company. At this point, most people are not only left devastated but also in a panic mode.
Once you, unfortunately, find yourself in this kind of situation, do not panic. Here is what to do if your purse or wallet is stolen in the UK. This guide can help you protect your identity from further danger and limit your liability.
Try not to panic!
When the unfortunate incident happens, it is essential to calm down and figure out where to begin. Try to remember where you last saw your wallet and if there is a chance that you forgot where you placed it. However, if you are sure it was taken from you, you can replace everything in the purse or wallet apart from the cash.
Contact your bank and report your stolen debit/credit card
Thieves have the potential of doing a lot of damage with your debit card in a brief period. After you realize your wallet is missing, contact your financial institution or bank immediately to minimize the potential losses.
Inform the financial institution or bank that you have lost your debit card. The bank will cancel the debit card immediately and replace it with a new account number.
When you report a missing card within two working days, you will only be on the hook for up to £50 in unauthorized purchases. Some banks or financial institutions will not even charge that.
However, if you delay for more than two business days and less than two months, you will be held responsible for unauthorized purchases amounting up to £500. When you report after 60 working days, you will be liable for all unauthorized purchases made with your card.
List all items that were in your wallet
It is essential to know what was in your wallet before losing it. That can help you figure out the companies you need to contact and what you have to replace.
Besides, your insurance company and the police may want to know the exact items that were stolen. Therefore, it is vital to come up with a list of what you lost while everything is still fresh. Some of the common items in a wallet include:
- Membership cards
- Driving license
- ID card and passport
- Credit and debit cards
- Store loyalty cards
File a police report
Make sure that you report your stolen purse or wallet to the police. You need to file a police report to get a crime reference number in case you become a victim of identity fraud (you will also need the crime reference number for insurance claims).
When filing the police report, you may answer questions such as:
- Describe your lost purse or wallet
- Where and when you lost it
- Some of the items inside
Filing a police report in the UK is easier than ever. One does not have to go to a police station. You can file the report online.
Change your locks
If your keys were in your stolen wallet or purse, hurry up and change the locks to reduce the risk of robbery. Thieves are known to:
- Make key copies
- Note down their victim’s address from their driving license.
- Submit their victim’s wallet to the police station
With that, the thief can easily get to your property and rob your house.
Order new credit or debit cards
After losing your wallet or purse, you still need another payment card for emergencies. Contact your Credit Company or bank and order a replacement card. You can do that via the bank’s app or online. However, some banks in the UK may take at least 10 business days.
Since the new card has new details and numbers, you will have to inform all websites, among other places, you had registered your previous payment card. Without doing that, future transactions will not go through. You can order new copies of your official ID, driving license, and any other lost documents during this time.
Besides, if you had registered your travel card with TFL under your name, you can order a new card and cancel the previous one. The company will transfer the amount on your previous card into the new one.
Re-Order new Loyalty cards and cancel the stolen ones
Most people may consider this a low priority, but loyalty cards such as Tesco and Nectar may hold points worth a lot of money. Once the card is stolen, the thief can redeem all the points that have taken you years to gather.
Therefore, it is essential to remember each membership card that was in your wallet. You can use a website, app, or call the loyalty company to cancel and order a new membership number.
Consider Identity theft protection
Even after cancelling your credit and debit cards, chances are you are still vulnerable. The information on other cards in your wallet, such as Social Security cards, can provide thieves with all the information they need to steal your identity. Always leave your Social Security card in a safe and secure place at home.
You can also consider signing up for a reliable identity theft protection program in the UK. After you notice your wallet is stolen, you can contact your identity theft protection company to help you cancel your debit and credit cards. They can also help replace your Social Security card, driver’s license, insurance cards, and other items lost in your wallet.
For the future…
Even after taking the appropriate steps, replace your purse or wallet with a new one. This time, only carry what you need to avoid losing everything if the incident reoccurs.
Some insurance companies in the UK insure cash up to £500. Get a reliable insurance company and get a contents insurance policy.
Also, avoid storing personal information such as addresses and passwords. They can easily make you a target.