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Adult Protective Services: Identity Theft

To report abuse of an adult at risk
(age 18 to 59), call your county helpline.

To report abuse in a nursing home
or other long term care facility,
contact the Division of Quality Assurance.

To report abuse of an elder adult at risk 
(age 60 plus),
call your county helpline or the Elder Abuse Hotline at 833-586-0107.

To report abuse outside of Wisconsin,
contact the National Adult Protective Services Association.


Identify theft is becoming more and more common. With just a few pieces of valuable information, an identity thief can ruin your reputation, your credit, and even your ability to lead a normal life. The following are actions you can take to protect yourself from becoming the victim of an identity thief.

Destroy identifying information

Rip or shred all bills and documents that have identifying information before you toss them in the garbage. Identifying information includes things like your:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • Social Security number
  • Account numbers

Also shred pre-approved credit card offers. These are a target for identity thieves.

Protect your confidential documents

Protect your passwords and pin numbers. Keep them hidden or locked up.

Do not carry extra credit cards, your Social Security card, birth certificate, or passport in your wallet or purse, except when needed.

Keep your information private

Do not give out your bank account information number unless you place the call. Banks NEVER e-mail or call to ask for your bank account number. If they work at your bank, they already have your account details.

If a caller tells you there is a problem with your account, tell the caller you will get back to the bank. Do not use the number they give you. Instead, look up the phone number for your bank and use that to call them. Aside from protecting yourself, this is also a good way for the bank to know that someone is targeting their account holders.

Never give out your bank account or Social Security number over the phone. Hang up immediately if you get a phone call from someone asking for your:

  • Social security number
  • Date of birth
  • Credit card number
  • Bank account number

For more information, visit the Wisconsin Office of Privacy Protection website.

Related topics

Adult Protective Services

Adult Protective Services: Financial Exploitation

Adult Protective Services: Avoiding Scams


Last revised October 14, 2022