What is Identity Theft?
'Identity Theft'- the term says it all. Someone simply steals your identity and does mischief using it as a mask to identify his or her real identity.
To make it more clear, identity theft happens when someone steals your personal information- your name and address, your driver’s license, your Social Security Number, your bank account credentials etc- and then use it for wrong or unlawful purposes. The impostor could use these to take out loans, open up new credit accounts, seek medical services and even commit crimes, all in your name. The impostor could also access your bank or retirement accounts or steal your tax refunds and even implicate you in unnecessary legal proceedings.
This is now much more common than we think. Celebrities, businessmen, professionals, homemakers and even kids are falling prey to instances of identity theft.
What Happens When Hackers steal Identity?
In some cases, they just use your credit cards and debit cards and wrack up a lot of bills that you have to pay. Sometimes, however, they can gain access to the account, have the address changed, and then not pay the bills when they come. You don’t realize you’re not getting a bill, so you don’t realize there’s a problem.
Not only that, but thieves can also buy items with your cards, open new cards in their name, or a fake one, open accounts for gas, phone, and electricity, steal tax refunds and get medical care. They can even pretend to be you when and if they are arrested, which drags your name through the mud.
How ID theft or Credit Card Fraud Happens?
There are so many ways that identity theft can occur. For one thing, they can take mail out of the garbage or mailbox to gain access to account numbers and SSN. They may also try to trick you into emailing personal information or may steal it from a business office.
Avoid Identity Theft Today and Stay Secured
If you are like many people, you want to keep your personal information safe and don’t want to be the victim to identity theft. The problem is that if you are a victim of this sort of crime, you are still held responsible for what the hacker does. At Comodo, we don’t believe this is fair. Whether you own a business or are an individual, we can help secure your information.
Recovering from Identity Theft
Upon realizing that you've become a victim of identity theft, you need to act fast. The following things could be done as soon as you realize that your identity has been stolen and misused
- You could begin with placing an initial fraud alert. If it seems that your personal or financial information has been misused, call one of the nationwide credit reporting companies and request them to put an initial fraud alert on your credit report.
- Get your credit report from all credit reporting companies.
- You could consider asking the credit reporting companies to place a credit freeze on your credit file.
- Create an Identity Theft Report. This would involve submitting a complaint about the theft to the FTC and obtaining an Identity Theft Affidavit, filing a police report about the identity theft and obtaining the police report or the report number, and finally attaching the FTC Identity Theft Affidavit to the police report to make an Identity Theft Report.
This being done, you could consult experts and take the next steps to contact authorities or businesses where fraudulent transactions and do the needful.
Therefore, you should make sure that identity theft doesn’t happen with any company you do business. If you’d like to learn more, please contact us today.