Identity Theft by Phishing
Stealing Your Life: The Ultimate Identity Theft Prevention Plan
by Frank W. Abagnale

Stealing Your Life is more frightening than a gory murder mystery. Any one of us, from cradle to grave, is vulnerable to a swindle that can wreck us emotionally, cost us serious money, ruin our credit ratings, and take us years to straighten out. Identity theft is here to stay, and as long as legislators, businesses, law enforcement agencies, and individuals fail to take it seriously, the number of victims will continue to climb.

For thirty-two years, the author has been a law-abiding citizen; his criminal past, famously recounted in the book and film "Catch Me If You Can," is a distant memory. However, he knows how crooks think, and this knowledge has led to a lucrative career as a consultant for the FBI and corporations all over the world in preventing frauds and scams. Abagnale is horrified at how easy and tempting identity theft is for the budding criminal. He calls it "a crook's dream come true."

     

Identity Theft by Phishing

Identity Theft : Fastest-growing Crime

Identity Theft by Phishing * Identity Theft : Fastest-growing Crime

Identity Theft : Fastest-growing Crime   
Michael Sanford

Identity theft is quickly becoming one of the most prevalent forms of crime in the country, with approximately 10 million victims a year.

Cases include impostors using someone's credit card number to make purchases, and social security numbers stolen over the internet. Identity thieves are also now robbing identities on a large scale, as seen by the Choice Point and LexisNexis cases earlier this year, when personal information from 175,000 accounts was stolen from these two large data collecting companies.

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Bogus Tweet Fears Dog AFL (Herald Sun)
PLAYERS have been urged to report fake Twitter accounts as internet identity theft continues to dog the AFL.

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Identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in the country with about 10 million victims a year, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center.

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Symantec Reports Surge In Phishing Attacks (V3.co.uk Via Yahoo! UK & Ireland News)
February saw a dramatic rise in phishing attacks and the use of current events to persuade unsuspecting web users to download malware, according to the latest monthly spam report from Symantec.

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The crime takes several forms, including impostors using someone's credit-card number to purchase merchandise and drivers giving someone else's personal information when pulled over by police for speeding.

Cases of credit-card and Social Security numbers getting stolen over the Internet are becoming the most common instances of identity theft, but people do not need to own a computer to be victimized.

Bridgewater was watching a New Year's parade in 2003 when she got a call from a man claiming to be with a credit-card company.

For example, criminals recently gained access to 175,000 accounts from two data collecting companies: ChoicePoint and LexisNexis.

While banks take security measures to protect customers who bank online and use credit, ATM or debit cards, officials say consumers themselves must take precautions.

Signed with an official eBay logo, the e-mail tells a consumer that their eBay account has had "unusual activity" or is in danger of closing.

A victim of identity theft will need a new credit card, driver's license or Social Security card, depending on what information was stolen and used.

Her days of casually tossing her purse about ended when a relative stole personal information from her purse and rented apartments in New Mexico, signed up for credit cards, bought different cell phone plans and purchased a $43,000 pick-up truck.

Kurrasch learned of the identity theft when her application for a car loan was denied.

Identity theft has become and epidemic and the number one crime in America. Millions of consumers have become victims of identity theft in one way or another. The internet has become a breeding ground for crimes of persuasion. Through high-tech scams, fake websites and emails, computer hacking, and telemarketing schemes, thieves are able to obtain and sell your personal information on the black market. According to one source if your FICO score is 550-650 your information is worth $150 to $200.

With personal information thieves can drain your bank account, obtain credit cards, mortgages loans, personal loans, auto loans, and even deceive law enforcement and commit crimes in your name. No one is safe!

According to the Denver Post 7/31/2005, American Idol Star Rueben Studdard recently filed charges of identity theft and fraud against his ex-manager.

What can you do if you become an identity theft victim?

You can do-it yourself, but it will take hundreds of hours, thousands of dollars, and dealing with stress and mayhem that's associated in restoring your identity. In today's busy society; working, raising the children, paying the bills and dealing with everyday life, it is almost impossible to find time to deal with something else, especially if your identity is stolen.

Consumers are becoming more aware of the problem of identity theft due to the costs involved in being a victim, but The Capital Journal reports that few people realize the time investment that can go into recovery: Around 600 hours of work over months or years.

When consumers contact the Federal Trade Commission, their primary concern is identity theft.

Identity theft robs people of more than just money.

According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, it now takes a victim more than 600 hours of work, spread over months and years, to recover from having their identity stolen.

That 600 hours represents nearly $16,000 in lost or potential income, according to the resource center.

The average victim also ends up spending an extra $1,600 of his own money to clear his name and clean his credit report.

It could be as simple as telling someone they've won a prize, but in order to claim the prize the "phish" must provide credit card information for shipping and handling.

According to advice from the FTC, if a prize is labeled "free," then no personal or financial information should be needed to claim it.

Another scam is receiving a communication online from a financial institution that suggests an account has been violated and they need validation of personal information to re-establish the account.

The FTC warns that no "legitimate" business will ask through electronic means for validation of personal and financial information and that in the unlikely event they do, they will convey that information through a letter sent through the U.S. Postal System.

All a scammer needs to do is create a suitable copy of a letterhead for a business, a bank or even the Internal Revenue Service requesting personal information.

Rarely does a legitimate business ask for such information through e-mail or instant messages.

When approached over the Internet, the best thing to do is to call the Internet provider and report the incident.

For more information on Identity Theft please visit the Identity Theft resource center.



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Index of Articles about Indentity Theft

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