In today's digital age, where personal information is readily available online, identity theft has become a pervasive and ever-evolving threat. As a credit repair expert, I understand the importance of safeguarding your financial well-being against identity theft. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore what identity theft is, how you can prot...
Well, not everyone is as lucky as Jason Bateman to have funny gal, Melissa McCarthy, steal his or her identity. The movie Identity Thief takes you on a hilarious trip with outrageous mishaps between the two actors. However, in real life, identity theft is no joking matter. Behind all the laughs, the movie brings you to the rash reality that identity theft is no longer a matter of an unauthorized charge or two on your credit card; it can mean someone taking over your life.
At Praxis Consulting, we want you to be prepared for even the worst of these situations. Here are some quick tips to help you avoid becoming a victim of identity theft:
1. Secure your network: If you have WiFi in your home, make sure that the network is secure and locked. Criminals are able to hack networks and can know your every move on the Internet if it is not secure. Read over the documentation on how to ensure your network is safe or ask your Internet provider handle it for you.
2. Set banking alerts: In the age of the smart phone, everyone has a banking app. Be sure to set up alerts (email or text notifications) so you know when there is activity happening on your account.
3. Do not make purchases on untrusted sites: If you are unfamiliar with the website and the deal is too good to be true, RUN. More than likely this amazing deal is a way to lure you in. Try using payment processors, such as PayPal, to avoid giving out your financial information directly.
Why is identity theft so widespread? According to the 2005 Fraud Survey by the Better Business Bureau, half of victims recognize their perpetrator. These are warning signs to watch out for:
I used to work at a company that handled stolen and lost credit card reports. I don't know how often someone calls to report that their former or soon-to-be former spouse has stolen all their financial details and gone on a spending spree in revenge. This type of emotional blackmail can happen to anyone - not just ex-husbands or wives - but it's especially strong when angered. Identity theft can have devastating results both financially and emotionally. When someone has access to all of your private information, they often become familiar with you.
No matter the relationship, it's essential that you monitor your credit score and other financial data regularly.
Identity theft - the most devastating form of identity theft
Congress passed the Fair Credit Reporting Act several years ago in an attempt to smooth out some problems in the Credit reporting industry. The best known provision of this Act is one that permits Americans to receive a free copy of their credit reports from each of the three main credit bureaus once per year. So far, this provision of the Act has been a success. A lesser-known provision of the legislation is one that is intended to protect active duty military personnel from being victimized by identity theft while they are out of the country.
Each year, thousands of people around the world fall victim to identity theft… the assumption of their identity by others in an attempt to empty their bank accounts, establish fake lines of credit in their name, or to take advantage of current lines of credit and max out any credit cards that they might currently have.
Luckily, there are some simple steps that you can take that will help you to avoid identity thieves and keep your personal and financial information private. The tips provided below are designed to help you to protect your identifying information, though in the end the implementation of them is up to you.
Will we ever get a break? Not right now. In San Diego, police arrested a postal worker for stealing mail and trading it to identity thieves to support his drug habit.
Another arrest involved the hacking of wireless carrier T-Mobile USA's network. According to Fox News, the attacker gained access to a database of 16 million customers including the personel information of the Secret Service agent investigating the break in.
When we think of identity theft, children are probably not the first victims we might imagine. Unfortunately, more and more kids are being targeted for this crime, and the culprits may not be who you think. Right now, approximately 4% of all identity theft cases involve children, which means roughly 400,000 kids a year are having their futures ruined without their knowledge. * In an article on MSNBC.com, a 24-year old man explained that by the age of 10, his identity had been used to accumulate almost $250,000 in debt and to commit a felony. Another victim, a 9-year old boy, received a collection notice for a $2,000 debt.
Identity theft has become one of the United States top crimes. It is estimated that on a yearly basis, this crime costs the government an alarming $1.3 Billion. Identity theft works so well because the swindlers are easily able to get all the information and documentation about their victim that they need. Another very alarming fact is that theft of an identity can go completely unnoticed for many months prior to the realization that the crime has occurred. In 2007, the United States will implement a new Type of identification card. This card will have biometrical information on the individual.
Believe it or not identity theft has moved to the dead. It is compounding more and more family's grief because con artists are digging up identities of the deceased. The identity of someone who has died is becoming an irresistible target to thieves and the death helps buy them time before they are likely to get caught. The scam artists search the obituaries where they find valuable information that gives them a jump start at identity theft. Lengthy obituary and death notices gives crooks more valuable information that they use to do more damage. Identity theft crimes involving the deceased are a dark, shady side of the booming identity theft crime.
It’s almost hard to believe, but the elderly are by far the number one targets and victims in the United States for identity theft and credit card fraud.The elderly are typically selected because of their established credit histories, a lack of education about credit as well as an increased dependence upon family members. Elderly financial abuse is unfortunately on the rise. The 2011 MetLife Study of Elder Financial Abuse reported that victims lose an estimated $2.9 billion dollars annually which is up 12 % from 2008. Strangers are responsible for 51% of the elderly abuse crimes, but unbelievably friends or family members commit 34% of these crimes. The Most Common Victims
Picture yourself walking down the street, all alone. It’s late at night. It’s a bit brisk, and the wind is blowing through the tall buildings on both sides of you. Suddenly, from out of nowhere, someone runs by you, knocks you over, grabs your
wallet, and takes off.
It sounds like a scene from a movie, and there may come a time in the future where this type of person-to-person crime
is only found in movies. Why would anyone rob a bank, or rob an individual, when they could simply use a person’s
information to obtain employment, credit cards, and lines of credit?
Plainly put, Identity Theft is when anyone uses your name, social security number, credit card information or any personally identifying information as their own to commit a crime; including fraud. Identity theft takes many forms in the day and age of technology. It can range anywhere from someone simply verbally pretending to be you all the way to a complete theft of an identity including your social security number and credit history.