The campaign against identity theft needs you

http://www.seattletimes.com/sponsored/the-campaign-against-identity-theft-needs-you/

The campaign against identity theft needs you

In Washington, more than 8,300 consumers filed identity theft reports with the FTC last year.

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The Federal Trade Commission received nearly 400,000 identity theft reports in 2016. Here in Washington, more than 8,300 consumers filed identity theft reports last year with the FTC.

Recent FTC experiments show how quickly ID thieves exploit stolen information. In one experiment, it took 90 minutes for crooks to try to use fake personal information the FTC had posted on website commonly used by identity thieves. A few weeks later, we ran the experiment again and this time it took just 9 minutes. The total number of attempts: 119 using the first batch of information and 1,108 using the second set. Our experiments also demonstrated that the market for stolen information is global.  Internet addresses from close to 30 countries were associated with attempts to use the stolen information.

With the speed, stealth, and global reach of ID theft, what can we do to frustrate thieves and limit the damage? The answer is to make fighting ID theft an all-hands endeavor. And if you are an ID-theft (more…)

Social Security: Protect yourself from identity theft by following these steps

Social Security: Protect yourself from identity theft by following these steps

When it comes to doing business with Social Security online, there is little to worry about — all of our online services are protected by strong internet security protocols, and you should have confidence that they are safe and secure.

However, there are other ways identity thieves and criminals can obtain your personal information and cause you significant harm.

If someone contacts you claiming to be from Social Security and asks for your Social Security number, date of birth or other identifying information, without validating who they are, beware.

Do not provide your personal information without first contacting Social Security to verify if Social Security is really trying to contact you. It could be an identity thief phishing for your personal information. Call Social Security’s toll-free number at 800-772-1213 (TTY 800-325-0778).

If you receive a suspicious call, report it by going to http://oig.ssa.gov/report.

Or call 800-269-0271 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. You should provide as much of the following information as you know:

• The suspect(s) and victim(s) names, address(es), phone number(s), date(s) of birth and Social Security number(s).

• Where the fraud took place.

• Description of when and how the fraud was committed.

• Why the person committed the fraud (if known).

• Who else has knowledge of the potential violation.

Identity theft is one (more…)

12 Places Your Data May Not Be Safe (And What You Can Do)

 

12 Places Your Data May Not Be Safe (And What You Can Do)

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Data compromises and the identity-related crimes that flow from them are now the third certainty in life, right behind death and taxes. That said, there is plenty you can do to stay as crime-proof as possible.

According to Risk Based Security, more than 4.2 billion records were compromised worldwide in 2016 alone. In truth, the total number of compromised records is unknowable. Here’s what you do need to know: it is a near certainty that most, if not all, of your personal identity portfolio is already “out there.”

How to Keep Your Personal Information Safe

Identity theft is a catch-as-catch-can endeavor. Where there is a will, there is almost always a way. In fact, many, if not most, of us have already been compromised either by a breach or as a result of obsessive (and excessive) overexposure on social media. Enough of our personally identifiable information (PII) is readily available on the web to make us easy targets for phishing attacks and identity-related crimes.

Thankfully, identity theft is often a crime of opportunity. All that vulnerable information still needs to be accessed, which may require more effort than your (more…)

Combat Identity Theft With Alertness And Preventive Steps

http://www.arkansasbusiness.com/article/118227/identity-theft

Combat Identity Theft With Alertness And Preventive Steps

John Cullum, Principal, Bell and Company

Most people today are familiar with the term identity theft, however, 20 years ago it was not a concern to most individuals and businesses in the United States.

The rise of the information age and the way bad guys can use modern tools have made identity theft a serious matter. It was not until 1996 that Arizona became the first state to recognize it as a crime. The criminal may not always wear a mask. It can be a friend or a relative.

There are many forms of identity theft. Fraudsters use a taxpayer’s information to apply for tax refunds in the victim’s name. The IRS sends a refund based on the first return filed, and the victim may not know this theft occurred until he tries to file a return and the IRS rejects the electronic filing.

Fraudsters will also try to obtain personal information to obtain loans or credit cards in a victim’s name. Increasingly they are stealing the identity of children under legal age. This act of identity theft may not reveal itself for many years and is not discovered until the child is applying for a student (more…)

Soaring identity theft problem spurs education forum

http://www.hometownlife.com/story/news/local/plymouth/2017/08/07/soaring-identity-theft-problem-spurs-education-forum/540178001/

Soaring identity theft problem spurs education forum

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Experts say identity theft hit an all-time high last year — and the Canton and Plymouth area is certainly not immune.

That’s why state Rep. Jeff Noble of Plymouth has announced a consumer education forum, featuring representatives of the Michigan Attorney General’s Office, at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15, at the Plymouth District Library.

“We’re trying to get as many people as possible informed about this, especially older folks, to keep them from being taken advantage of,” Noble said.

While the elderly can sometimes be more at risk, Noble said identity theft is a crime that can — and does — affect victims of all ages.

Canton police Lt. Michael Steckel cited some of the area’s most common forms of identity theft:

  • Criminals are stealing personal information and using it to obtain money by filing fraudulent unemployment claims.
  • Every year, numerous residents try to file their tax returns, only to learn that someone already has filed a fraudulent claim in their name.
  • Police routinely receive reports of a stolen identity being used to open fraudulent credit card accounts to make purchases or (more…)

College students are targets for scams and at high risk for identity theft

http://www.macon.com/news/business/article167094322.html

 

College students are targets for scams and at high risk for identity theft

AUGUST 14, 2017 12:34 PM

Your cell phone could protect you from identity theft at the pump Most credit card skimmers use Bluetooth technology

https://www.ksat.com/news/your-cell-phone-could-protect-you-from-identity-theft-at-the-pump

Your cell phone could protect you from identity theft at the pump

Most credit card skimmers use Bluetooth technology

By Mariah Medina – Digital Journalist

Headline Goes Here

AUSTIN, Texas – Texas Commissioner of Agriculture, Sid Miller, released a video of tips to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft at the pump.

While many were widely known tips and tricks, Miller shared a little-known fact about the usefulness of your cell phone to combat identity theft.

Here’s Miller’s list of tips:

1.) Avoid pumps out of a gas station clerk’s view

Gas pumps out of a clerk’s view are more susceptible to tampering.

2.) Use a credit card

Miller suggests using a credit card over a debit card when at the pump. In the event your identity is stolen, thieves can clear out your bank account if you use a debit card.

3.) Get a receipt

If you have your identity is stolen, you are able to narrow down where your identity was stolen using your receipt. Additionally, Miller said if you (more…)

Mail theft often times leads to identity theft

http://wncn.com/2017/08/08/mail-theft-often-times-leads-to-identity-theft/

Mail theft often times leads to identity theft

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Mail theft can result in more than just losing a valuable check or package.

Criminals often take mail to steal your identity.

The Federal Trade Commission estimates 400,000 people had their identities stolen last year because of mail theft.

But, there are simple ways you can protect yourself.

Postal inspectors say most mail theft in this part of the state is committed by organized rings that use runners to grab the mail out of your box whether it’s at home or a business.

The Post Office handles over 207 billion of pieces of mail each year and while the majority of it arrives just fine, there are hundreds of cases of mail theft each year.

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“We tend to find the suspects are looking for checks, things that they can alter or ‘wash’ to convert to their own gain,” says postal inspector Mike Carroll.

A mail box that’s filled with letters that haven’t been collected (more…)

I Was An ID Theft Victim: Here’s What I Did Right (And Wrong)

I Was An ID Theft Victim: Here’s What I Did Right (And Wrong)

I Was An ID Theft Victim: Here’s What I Did Right (And Wrong)

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It was bound to happen at some point: I became a victim of identity theft. After a 20+ year career writing and educating consumers about credit, including identity theft, I found myself on the other side of the story.

I was alerted through credit monitoring that a new retail credit card had been opened in my name. While I had shopped at that store the day before, I most certainly had not opened an account. A phone call to the retailer revealed that the perpetrator had bought a few hundred dollars worth of sneakers online and they were out for delivery as we were speaking.

Organization—sign up free Nav offers an easy way to keep your whole credit life organized. View your personal and business credit together in one account. Sign up for free.

It’s been a few months since the incident and here are some lessons I’ve learned.

What I Did Right

I monitor my credit. This helps me see warning signs, such as new inquiries and accounts on my credit reports. In addition to card issuers that provide me with free credit scores each month, I have a Nav account that provides me with (more…)

Soaring identity theft problem spurs education forum

http://www.hometownlife.com/story/news/local/plymouth/2017/08/07/soaring-identity-theft-problem-spurs-education-forum/540178001/

 

Soaring identity theft problem spurs education forum

 14 7LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

Experts say identity theft hit an all-time high last year — and the Canton and Plymouth area is certainly not immune.

That’s why state Rep. Jeff Noble of Plymouth has announced a consumer education forum, featuring representatives of the Michigan Attorney General’s Office, at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15, at the Plymouth District Library.

“We’re trying to get as many people as possible informed about this, especially older folks, to keep them from being taken advantage of,” Noble said.

While the elderly can sometimes be more at risk, Noble said identity theft is a crime that can — and does — affect victims of all ages.

Canton police Lt. Michael Steckel cited some of the area’s most common forms of identity theft:

  • Criminals are stealing personal information and using it to obtain money by filing fraudulent unemployment claims.
  • Every year, numerous residents try to file their tax returns, only to learn that someone already has filed a fraudulent claim in their name.
  • Police routinely receive reports of a stolen identity being used to open fraudulent credit card accounts to make purchases or (more…)