Victims of Crime

Theft of money and personal belongings is a traumatic event. The Embassy or Consulate can assist you in replacing your passport, but you will also want to take care of canceling stolen credit cards, replacing travelers’ checks, etc.

One of the first things you should do in the event of a robbery or theft is to report the loss to the police. The police report may be crucial to any insurance claims you might make, and is also needed to replace your Brazilian entry stamp by the Brazilian Immigration Service.

For more information access the Help for U.S. Citizen Victims of Crime Overseas page at the State Department website.

If you have reason to believe that a family member or friend has disappeared in Brazil, the Embassy/ Consulate can help you locate the individual. Please contact the American Citizen’s Services Unit, or the emergency duty officer if you are calling after hours.

Please note, however, that the U.S. Federal Law under the Privacy Act limits what we can tell you after our interaction with any American over 18 years old. The Embassy and Consulates cannot release any information about an American’s situation without his or her express permission to waive the Privacy Act.

Without this permission we can only notify the individual of your concern and suggest that they contact you directly.

In order to assist us in locating the US citizen abroad, it is helpful to have the following information available:

  • Name of the U.S. citizen abroad
  • Date and place of birth
  • Passport number (if known)
  • Itinerary
  • Last known address and phone number
  • Reason for travel/residence abroad
  • Date of last contact
  • Other contacts abroad (friends, business associates, hotel, etc.)
  • Caller’s full name, address, phone number and relationship

For Emergency Family Messages also include:

  • Nature of emergency
  • What you want the person told about the emergency
  • Name, address and telephone number and relationship with person in the U.S. they should contact

The Privacy Act of 1974 governs the collection, maintenance, use, and dissemination of personally identifiable information about individual American citizens that is maintained in government databases and files.  Under the Privacy Act, the United States government may not:

  • Disclose personally identifiable information about any American citizen. This includes information about an American citizen’s welfare, whereabouts, travel intentions, or legal problems.
  • Disclose this or any other information about an American citizen to anyone, including family members or Congressional representatives,
  • Disclose any non-public information about an American citizen to members of the media or of foreign governments.

According to the Privacy Act of 1974, no official of the United States government may disclose any information about an American Citizen without his or her express written permission.

The officers of the United States Department of State take seriously their responsibilities under the Privacy Act to protect the interests and information of American citizens, and are grateful for your understanding.

American citizens can waive their rights under the Privacy Act by completing a  Privacy Act Waiver (PDF file 28 KB).