Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Is There a Way to Prevent Identity Theft?

Pretty woman walking down the street, pretty woman… then suddenly , a man seizes her hand bag. The woman shouts and begs for help, but the man runs as fast as he could until the woman does not even have a view of the man’s shadow….

Would you like this thing to happen? Of course not. Everybody wants to preserve their property and their money because these are fruits of their hard work. Stealing one’s property is a violation of the law, similar to stealing your personal identity.

Sometimes, it is more acceptable although it is also a crime when somebody steals your property. The worse thing happens when it is already your privacy or the personal information that is taken away from you by thieves.

Identity theft is a threat against your person. It reveals everything about you to another person who will use it illicitly. Knowing all the information about yourself will allow him to make transactions with other people using your identity. You will lose money!

However, do not worry too much about identity theft because there are several ways for you to prevent you from being a victim of identity theft. If only you will strictly follow these, you will be guaranteed with the security of your identity.

1. Always securely keep your things in proper places. – This is the basic thing that you should do. Never allow anybody to fix your wallet where your identification cards, bank accounts and other personal information are placed. Avoid trusting so much even to the closest person to you. Study shows that almost 26 percent of the cases in identity theft, the victims knew who the perpetrators are.
2. Burn all the receipts, personal applications, bank statement and any other kind of forms before you discard them. This will help you to protect your financial data and status.
3. Never give personal information instantly over the phone. Make sure that the person calling reveals to you his real purpose for calling. But it is not still an assurance, it is better if you will see them personally before you give out information about yourself to know the real purpose.
4. Bring the ID that you needed most for a particular transaction. Leave it to your house, if you do not need it at all. This is also one way of protecting yourself from identity theft.
5. Usually, when you make a bank transaction such as depositing or withdrawing, you are to fill up a form. It is better if you only write the last four4 digit of your bank account number. The teller already knows the proper thing that they are suppose to do.
6. Surf in the net and know the latest information about online identity theft. You also have a big concern about this since sometimes you are making transactions through computers . Web spoofing is also stealing one’s website identity. You don’t know if somebody already knows your financial account number by imitating the website where your e-mail account is located.
7. Take some precautions when it comes to your credit and debit cards. Always keep your credit cards in a secure place. When using it in paying the stuffs that you shop, make sure that you give it properly and get it immediately to the cashier because you can be distracted by the person next to you in line.
8. Secure your ATM cards as well. When you withdraw from your ATM account, secure the card properly. Prevent yourself from being a victim of skimming. This is the process where the machine is able to get the details of your transaction.

Sad to say but everyday there are about thousands of people who become victims of identity theft. Sometimes, other people do not have any idea about this kind of crime. It is high time that you should get yourself be aware about this before it is too late.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Read about Identity Theft

Be Informed and Up-to-Date! Read Articles Concerning Identity Theft !

Are you aware of identity theft and the danger it can bring to your life if you become one of its victims? Perhaps not yet. Do not think that your innocence regarding identity thefts subtle workings is a protection from being violated.

Identity theft is a malicious and vicious crime wave nowadays. It is but necessary that you be properly informed of its machinations and implication. You also need to be kept up to date of recent events and cases pertaining to such crime. Being informed and up to date is a step to prevent being attacked or being a victim of this crime.

There are many websites through out the Internet developed to give you needed information, data and updates regarding identity theft. These websites will tell you everything you have to know about identity thieves, how they operate, when and where they attack and what they usually do to carry out their malicious plan.

The information they share to the masses of internet users, who are usually the first target of this crime, are through articles concerning identity theft. In these articles, they explain the subtle machinations of identity thieves just to obtain strictly personal and confidential information about people.

Articles concerning identity thefts also give an account on how to prevent being victimized by identity thieves. There are also articles about the laws being passed against identity theft. There are also in-depth explanations of various identity theft cases already tried in court.

According to articles concerning identity thefts, the term identity theft is the co-option of another person’s personal and confidential information. Identity thieves go to great lengths to discover a person’s whole name, social security number, credit card number, passport and ATM card information. The persons whose personal information and identity they stole are usually clueless of this fraudulent activity until after a crime has been committed and they are deep in trouble because they are the assumed culprits.

Identity theft is a crime being committed by malicious and ingenious criminals. This crime takes on plenty of forms. It can also be conducted in many varying ways on different avenues. Though it uses different schemes, they are identified because of the wrongful acquisition of another person’s personal data through fraud or deception and typically for economic gain.

The Websites with articles concerning identity thefts explain why people need to take precautions against identity theft.

Unlike fingerprints, which are solely yours and cannot be stolen by others, for their own gains, your personal data like Social Security number, bank account or credit card number, telephone number, and other valuable identifying data can really be stolen and used for the criminal’s own ends. If valuable data of yours fall into wrong hands, you can become a victim of persons who would like to profit at your expense.

Some articles concerning identity theft also share particular tactics being employed by identity thieves just to get hold and access other person’s personal information.  There are also news accounts on the incidents wherein identity theft may occur.

An example is the articles on credit reports containing serious errors that might cause consumers to be denied car loans, credit, credit cards and even mortgages. Another example is a recent article concerning identity theft warning consumers of the possibility of "huge victimization" within the next two years.

These reports all bear serious warnings to be extra careful in monitoring all financial transactions for unexplained account activity, withdrawals, or fund transfers.

There are also ample information about the nature and extent of identity theft activities as reported by victims.

There are also articles about good news on the fight against identity thefts. There is the article account about the Fair Credit Report Act. According to the article regarding this matter, the FCA  requires credit-reporting agencies to fix credit card mistakes.

There are also legal websites that will give access to users legal articles concerning identity theft cases. They give brisk analysis and specific data about trying identity theft cases in formal legal proceedings.

Here are other areas where identity theft can occur:

-  medical transactions
-  bank transactions
-  mails and e-mails
-  credit card transactions
-  internet transactions

Many articles concentrate on the particular areas where there are risks of identity thefts. There are also articles concerning investigations and statistics of identity theft. Steps in proper prevention and warning about identity theft are also shared in most articles.

It is but wise for Internet users to read up and start feeding yourself with important stuff about identity theft.

Identity Theft: What You Need to Know about it

The use of your personal data such as your name, address, telephone number, credit card, and mother’s maiden name by other people is called identity theft, which is also known to be an identity fraud. It is the illegal use of your personality to commit crime or any illegal acts.

Usually, this crime is done to commit financial fraud or deception. Either it is using your name to buy something or obtaining it thought the use of your credit account and other personal security accounts.

By the use of your name, the identity theft gets a good service and all they left for you is the bill that your name will be paying.

Sometimes, the well-established citizens are the ones victimized by identity theft; it can also target some people who do not have that much account.

These identity thieves also use college students, the data and information about these students are much better and much easier to obtain. They use their names for application for credit cards and use it for criminal and illegal purposes.

Most college students do not care about their financial account and do not apply for these credit cards but will eventually receive credit card application on their mailbox.

Large business groups are the main target of these identity thieves. They usually find out before they apply for credits, they have history of non-payment of bills, which is actually done by these identity thieves.

Small businesses will be surprised once they apply for loan and denied of approval because of the pending loan that needs to be paid. This is every critical problem where in these small businesses have to pay the loan they did not purchase.

Almost everybody is possible to be victimized by these identity thieves. It is because of the modern technology that exists in the world today.

Transactions are made without face-to-face contact, transactions that require the name, address, contact number, security information and sometimes password. Using malicious software that are downloaded through websites, thieves are able to gets all these information.

This is how easy these thieves get the information they need. Once they got all the information they need, they will have all the possibilities to commit different financial and other related crimes.

These thieves use different identities to purchase something, gather different services, obtain bank account, apply for credit card, apply for loans and other government benefits and obtain money using the victims’ identity.

The major problem with this kind of crime is that the victim will be forced to clear all the transaction he or she has not made. In most cases, these thieves usually pretend to be the victims’ identity, obtaining all the necessary information including the victim’s security settings.

The funny thing, these transactions are from the knowledge of the owner but will be surprised to receive many bills and loans to be paid. The more that these thieves involve in these crimes the longer it is to repair the damage.

The damage done to the victim will bring difficulty in obtaining new jobs, applying as an employer, applying for credit cards and renting apartments.

However, this major problem can be resolved. Many companies offer identity theft insurance. Many people will have the privilege to obtain this insurance as an option in their home insurance policy.

It is now possible to detect the people that uses the personal data if have home insurance policy. By this means, the owner will have the knowledge on who are the thieves that tries to use their personal data.
Reports about the present situation of the accounts are given to the owner in regular basis. However, the owner may need to pay the service rendered.

The amount that is paid over to these identity theft insurance is huge. There are many debates about it but people prefer to pay it to have peace of mind.

It is better to pay the huge prize than to be worried about the security of your identity. These insurance will surely protect the account from the identity thieves. You do not need to worry if the accounts are secured by it.

Finding the best identity theft insurance is the first thing you need to do.

Further introduction to Identity Theft

There is something you can do about preventing identity theft. Knowledge is power and here is where you become empowered!

Protecting Your Mail

Thieves would steal your mail from the garbage and even from your own mailbox.  Don't let them!  Make sure that every single piece of mail with any kind of identifying information on it is shredded before you throw it away.  Simply tearing it into a few pieces is not adequate protection.  This only provides the thief with a fairly basic jigsaw puzzle to your most valued information.  Invest in a small shredder for your home.  These are very inexpensive especially when you consider that the minimal cost of the item could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars in the long run, not to mention a huge headache.  If you can't purchase one yourself then take your mail to work with you and use the shredder in your office.

A locked mailbox will not completely guarantee your protection from identity thieves but it certainly may help in dissuading their attempts to steal your mail.  Look into purchasing a mailbox that has a slot in the top for the mail to be slid into but where you need a key to actually remove it.  This way, if your mailbox is broken into you will at least know it right away and will perhaps be able to notify creditors, banks and other companies before any real damage is done.

What To Do When Identity Theft Occurs

All right, so it happened.  Even with all of the precautions and care you've taken to protect yourself from thieves, somehow and someway they found a way to your personal and financial life.

“I did everything I could possibly do.  I took the time to make myself aware and educate myself on the facts and this still happened…why?”  Well, unfortunately sometimes there is no real answer to the question why, it just is what it is.  You have to keep in mind that these perpetrators are professionals and they will stop at nothing to achieve their goal.

Just like you go to work everyday and perform your job with the proficiency and skills that you have acquired, so do they.  Their job everyday is to rip off honest, hardworking and innocent people such as you and I.  It's not fair and it never will be.  They have made a huge mess of your life and you are the one who is stuck with the task of picking up the pieces and turning things right again.  Sometimes you can build that fence higher, make the bridge more difficult to cross and even fill the moat with alligators, but inevitably there will always remain a weak and penetrable spot.  Identity thieves are adept at looking for and seeking out those particular spots.

The most important thing for you to keep in mind right now is that regardless of how much damage was done and how bad the situation looks at present, it could always be worse.  Think about what would have happened had you not already been so familiar with how identity theft works.  You may not have been able to prevent it but you certainly knew how to recognize the fact that it was happening to you.

The Different Methods of Identity Theft

There are really only two basic types of actual identity theft, although there are many different methods that one can utilize to rip someone off in an identity theft type scam.

The first of these identity theft type is generally the easiest and most basic way for thieves to achieve their objective, account takeover  An example of account takeover is when a thief gets hold of your actual physical credit card, or perhaps just the card number and expiry date, using it to purchase services or products.  This works out extremely well for the thief, as the credit card owner doesn't usually notice the additional purchases until they either receive their monthly statement in the mail or have attempted to use the card and found that it has reached the maximum limit allowed.

The second type of identity theft is called application fraud, or what is otherwise known as “true name fraud”.  In order for a thief to be successful at application fraud, they must have access to a good deal of your personal information such as your Social Security Number (SSN), full name, address, place of work, salary, driver's license number, date of birth etc.  Of course not all of these pieces of information would be necessary for a thief to get away with application fraud but certainly a combination of some of the above would be required.

It Can Affect Anyone

Like many, you may assume that identity theft only happens to those people who might be a bit more careless when it comes to safeguarding personal information.  Or perhaps you are of the mindset that because you don't really have a lot of money in your personal account or don't have credit cards with large spending limits, that identity theft thieves wouldn't necessarily target someone like yourself.  Well, make no mistake about it; identity theft can happen to anyone, including you!  Basically, if you have an identity then you are susceptible.