When You Are Not Yourself- identity theft

 

You may not be the person your credit card company thinks you are. Because someone has stolen your identity.  Somewhere, somehow, they have acquired enough information or false documents, to pose as the real you, and open new accounts or order credit cards which are now being maxed out.

 

It can be done on with very little basic information such as name, address, social security number and mother’s maiden name. The proliferation of sites on the internet offering faked I.D.s, including drivers’ licenses, is a gold mine for the identity thief. Credit card companies send out “pre-approved” applications, and never ask for proof that the signature that comes into their office, is really that of the person whose name is going on the card.

 

Fortunately, federal law limits your liability on each card, to $50. But that doesn’t eliminate the feeling of insecurity, that such a theft can cause. Nor does it save you from what may be months of hassle to eradicate the false information that has piled up against you with various companies and credit institutions.

 

Many people don’t realise how they may be put at risk in their everyday activities. Ask yourself, how many businesses you deal with, have bonded or checked the background of those employees who could have access to your personal and credit card information?

Then consider how easy it is to request a personal report on someone over the internet.

For relatively little costs, you can now request information on anyone at all, and get any or all of the following:

 

 

One estimate suggests that identity theft is growing at a rate of 50% a year. As many as a thousand people a day may be victims, whose crimes are never “solved” or prosecuted. In 1997 alone, the U.S. Secret Service made over 9,000 arrests for identity fraud, and that was just the tip of the iceberg.

 

Don’t let yourself become a victim. Take some common sense precautions, and verify that they are working by ordering a credit report twice yearly to make sure that there is only one, you.  Free credit reports are available by signing up at ______________ (link to free credit report sign-up page)

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