My Wallet is Lost (or Stolen) What Should I Do?

1. Calm Down And Make Sure Its Actually Lost

First step – breathe. Losing a wallet or a bag full of personal stuff is bad, but it’s not the end of the world. Everything can be replaced, and in most cases, you’re only going to lose a small amount of money – so calm down.

Then stop for a moment and make sure your wallet is actually gone. A few years ago my husband (the same one!) thought his wallet was stolen, only to discover two days later that it just fell into a box at work. So try and think where you saw it last, and if there’s any chance that you just misplaced it.

Still gone? OK, let’s move on to…

Still gone? OK, let’s move on to…


9. Consider signing up for identity theft protection services

If you lost your personal and financial documents, or you’ve experienced a data breach, you might want a little help protecting your identity and credit score.

First, find out if your bank, mortgage lender, or insurance company offers identity theft protection services at a rate that’s typically lower than those provided by the major ID theft protection companies. Then find out if what they’re offering is worth the expense.

In most cases, you’re paying for convenience, and you’ll save money and possibly do a better job if you monitor your credit reports and freeze your credit entirely.

But be prepared to remain vigilant for the next year or so, as it could take months before fraudulent activity appears in your bills or credit history.

I had a self-custodial wallet, and still have the device that it was installed on

Looking over this selection of wallets may help you remember which one you used. If you still have the wallet files, you may be able to recover your funds. The name of the relevant files depends on the software that you used, but one of the most common file names is wallet.dat. If you find a wallet file, create a backup first before trying to recover the wallet.

Call the credit bureaus

Get in touch with the two main credit bureaus used in Canada—Equifax and TransUnion. They can add a temporary alert to your profiles in case someone tries to use your information to apply for loans, credit or services in your name, says Maria Maffia, vice-president at Dragonfly ID, an identity restoration company that will make all the necessary calls and do the paperwork associated with a missing wallet or other instances of compromised identity. With alerts on file, if a thief tries to pose as you while applying for a credit card or to rent an apartment, for example, the person running the credit check will be asked to call the phone number you’ve associated with your credit profile and confirm it was you who made the application. In the case of a lost wallet or another known breach of your personal information, the credit monitoring companies offer this service for free, Maffia says.

What I Did Within the First 10 Minutes

Immediately I looked everywhere I could think of for my wallet.

Within ten minutes of losing my wallet, I visited my bank. I went to the teller and told her that I’d lost my wallet and needed to cancel my debit and credit cards and receive new ones.

The teller checked my account and verified my last purchase: the meal I’d bought at the cafe. She was able to cancel my cards on the spot, provide me with a temporary ATM card and order a new credit card with a new number.

6. File A Police Report

It might sound a bit silly to file a police report for a stolen wallet with some cash and a couple of credit cards. After all, let’s face it – detectives are not going to drop by your house for this, and Inspector Morse is not going to scour the streets, looking for clues that will lead to your wallet.

However, it’s still important to file a poli

However, it’s still important to file a police report – and get a case number. You might need it for your insurance claim, your bank might ask for it if there’s any trouble, or you might need it to prove there was a crime in case you face identity theft in the future.

Thankfully, it’s easier than ever to file a police report – you don’t even need to go to a police station with some police forces – and you can do it all online.

If you’re in London, you can report the crime via this Metropolitan Police page.

UK Money Blogger TipCheck your local spotted and selling page sites before you give up all hope. People these days seem to post on Facebook a lot when they find items such as phones and purses. Also, post a status that is open to the public and can be shared, my brother had his wallet handed back to him from this method. People like to be heroes!Claire Roach, Daily Deals UK

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6. Report lost insurance cards

You’ll need new auto and health insurance cards, but you’ll also want to review your policies to know where you stand if someone files a fraudulent claim on your accounts.

Make sure your carriers realize you lost your policy information and ask if there are security measures in place to protect your finances and your medical records.

Other Odds and EndsIf I Lost My Wallet

If your wallet was lost or stolen, there is a good chance it landed in the hands of criminals. You may want to be proactive and change the locks on your doors since they now have your home address. 

This is a great time to sign up for credit monitoring with to have the professionals keep an eye on things for you.

If you have a lawyer, call them too to give them a heads-up you may be dealing with a case of identity theft. They may also have some tips to ward off the danger. 

I had a web wallet, but the service shut down since

If the service had custody of your bitcoin balance, it is likely lost. Research the name of the service to determine what happened to the service, in case it just rebranded and is still around.

Call the bank again

If your wallet doesn’t turn up in the first couple of days, it’s time to begin the process of replacing your cards. Get in touch with your financial institutions again to cancel the cards permanently and order replacements. You can do this in person at a branch or over the phone. If you can get to a branch, you should be able to get a replacement bank card on the spot (again, provided you have identification). Your replacement credit card will likely take seven to 10 business days to arrive.

What I Did Next

Within 24 hours of losing my wallet, I visited Service Ontario to replace my driver’s licence and health card. I received temporary ones.

Within the week, I ordered a new bus pass, and new points and loyalty cards.

That weekend, I purchased a new wallet.

For the next two weeks, I monitored my accounts online to ensure that I recognized all of my transactions.

Within the month, I received my new credit and debit cards, a new driver’s licence and a new health card.

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