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A Personal Crime: Criminal Identity Theft

Aug 14, 2008
Criminals find several different ways to rob other people. For example, a thief might steal a car or cash and other items someone has on their person. They could break into a house and steal things as well. There is another way that criminals now steal that has a unique aspect to it.

This refers to criminal identity theft. When a thief steals, not possessions, but a person's identity itself, the crime is called criminal identity theft. Understanding just how thieves go about stealing someone's identity and what tactics they use is very important. Doing so will help you keep yourself from becoming a victim of criminal identity theft.

What Is Criminal Identity Theft?

Criminal identity theft is the action of a criminal assuming a different person's identity so that they may act as if they were them. The individuals who have their identities stolen and thereby become victims of criminal identity theft have to face serious consequences.

That negative toll can be in the area of legal matters, finances, credit ratings, employment interviews, etc. In fact, whatever the thief does in a negative or positive manner is a direct reflection upon the identity that has been stolen from another individual.

In addition, unfortunately, criminal identity theft is not noticed unless the criminal engages in an illegal activity and is apprehended. In addition, credit cards or other financial activities may be engaged in by the criminal. If the individual with the true identity is unaware of this financial activity it may reflect poorly on the victim if the person who engages in the criminal identity theft defaults on that financial arrangement.

If the above mentioned incidents occur, very sadly, in order for a victim of criminal identity theft to clean their name and credit after having had their identity stolen from them, they must deal with a difficult legal process.

Protective Steps

There are several steps that can and should be taken in order to lessen the potential risk of being victimized by criminal identity theft. Above all else, it is essential that you carry neither your social security card nor your social security number on your person.

Also, if you lose your wallet or purse along with any identification, make sure you report your loss to the authorities. In addition, if the driver's license is lost it is important to notify the local Department of Motor Vehicles.

In addition, it is a good idea to have your credit report checked at least yearly. However, if you feel that criminal identity theft may be a possibility with the loss of sensitive information, enroll in a fraud alert service. This service will notify you right away of any activity that involves your identity and application of any new credit accounts.
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