What is Identity theft?
Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personnel information without your knowledge for their benefit. They may use this info to commit fraud, become invisible, or to commit other crimes. The victims of identity theft can suffer adverse consequences as they may be held accountable for the perpetrator’s actions.
Financial identity theft is the most common form of this today. The thief may use your name to get credit cards, apply for bank loans, car loans, or even mortgages. Identity thieves have even filed for bankruptcy in the victims name.
Some of the other types include criminal, medical, child, and synthetic identity theft. In addition to these one of the worst forms is identity cloning which can encompass all other types. This is when the thief uses your information to in a sense become you. He learn everything about you, your birthplace, relationships, medical history, schooling, employment history and many other facets of your life. This allows the thief to pass themselves off as you and to disappear from their own identity and responsibilities.
There are numerous identity theft stories which describe the effects of this problem. Many times the victim is financially ruined. They may also face criminal prosecution as the thieves may commit crimes and the victims name is associated with the crime. If a criminal uses your medical information erroneous data may be placed in your medical records which could lead to incorrect diagnosis or even worse problems.
Knowing about the methods used by the criminals to obtain your personal information is very important. Most people do not know how their personal information was obtained by criminals until it’s too late. Here are some of the ways criminals obtain your personal information. The thieves may employ dumpster diving, phishing, visiting, spyware, corporate data breaches, mailbox raiding. The may look over your shoulder in public places when you are filling out documents or using your debit card. They may steal your wallet or purse. You also need to be wary of phone calls in which the caller asks for personal information. There are other ways they use which our how to prevent identity theft page covers.
A current article entitled, “Cyber Crime Made Easy” explained the level to which hackers are using malicious software. A noted security specialist recently said, “Interested in charge card theft? There’s an app for that.” This statement summed in the ease that these hackers are accessing all kinds of information online. Programs that hackers use have become so sophisticated that even inexperienced hackers can become proficient in no time. This type of program can steal charge card information, important documents, and even documents essential for homeland security. If the hacker were to gain these details, it would mean identity theft or even a possible terrorist attack.
In one notorious case of identity theft, the criminal, a convicted felon, not only incurred hundreds of thousands of dollars in credit card debt, obtained a government home loan, and bought homes, vehicles, and handguns in the victim’s name, but called his victim to taunt him — saying that he could continue to pose as the victim for as long as he wanted because identity theft was not a federal crime at that time — before filing for bankruptcy, also in the victim’s name. While the victim and his wife spent more than four years and more than $15,000 of their own money to restore their credit and reputation, the criminal served a brief sentence for making a false statement to procure a firearm, but made no restitution to his victim for any of the harm he had caused. This case, and others like it, prompted Congress in 1998 to create a new federal offense of identity theft.
If your identity is stolen, it may take months or even years clearing up the damage to your reputation and credit record. During this time, you may lose job opportunities, be refused loans for education, housing, or a car. Although you have not committed a crime, been late with a payment, or abused your credit, you are the one who will suffer severe financial consequences as a result of identity theft. As a student or recent graduate, being a victim of identity theft jeopardizes your financial future just as you are beginning to establish your credit record.
Identity theft is a problem which you need to avoid at all costs. do whatever you can to protect your information and used common sense at all times with regard to that information. If you become a victim the financial, emotional and and other costs can be overwhelming.
At identitytheftstories.net we look to these sites and others for further information about identity theft related issues and solutions. We hope that you will find them useful as well.
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