[…]Identity theft happens whenever someone uses your personal identification to commit fraud or other types of crimes. They may use your name, credit card number, or your Social Security number (or other identifying information).
According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the United States, some 9 million Americans have their identities stolen every year. They also state that identity theft is likely to affect most people in some way.
The thief may rent an apartment using someone else’s name. He/She may open a line of credit or use your own line of credit for his/her buying needs. He/She may apply for a job using your identification.
The effects of identity theft are very real. Your credit may be destroyed. You may have more debt than you should. You may be denied school loans or other types of loans due to poor credit or overuse of credit. You may even lose out on job opportunities if the case becomes severe enough.
The good news is that this very serious problem does have solutions. You may not even know about the problem until a debt collector calls you about a debt you do not remember creating. In other situations, you may spot the minor problems right away.
In many cases, the victims of identity theft can solve their problems quickly by being vigilant both online and offline.
These crimes are punishable by jail time and the repayment of funds.
Unfortunately, the road to getting your credit repaired and getting your debts worked out is rarely as easy to accomplish.
HOW DOES IDENTITY THEFT HAPPEN?
There are many ways in which identity theft can happen. Most of the time, you will not be making big mistakes such as handing over your personal information.
Rather, it may be small things that you do not think of or realize that can allow for someone to get your information. Still, by knowing how this happens, you will be able to prevent further occurrences.
The following are some of the most common methods by which identity thieves get their information:
One of the most common and hard-to-spot methods is phishing. Here, the identity thief pretends to be a credit card company, bank, or even an online payment service like PayPal or eBay.
They send you messages through email or even pop-up messages when you visit websites. They claim that you need to verify information or that your account has been put on hold.
The goal that they have is simply to get you to log into your account through their website so that they can steal your personal information.
While it may sound like something that would never happen, dumpster diving is also a commonly used method for getting your personal information.
They look through trash for bills that contain personal information. […]
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