Identity theft

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Identity Theft

A crime in which a person pretends to be another person for the purpose of using his/her financial information for personal gain. Identity theft can be fairly basic; for example, one may steal and use a credit card. Often, however, identity theft involves using computer programs to find a person's financial information and conduct large transactions with that person's money. Identity theft is a serious crime, as it can ruin the victim's credit, making it difficult to obtain a loan when one is needed. Many banks and credit card companies provide identity theft protection to reduce a client's liability for identity theft and to minimize its occurrence.

Identity theft.

Identity theft is the unauthorized use of your personal information, such as your name, address, Social Security number, or credit account information.

People usually steal your identity to make purchases or obtain credit, though they may also use the data to apply for a driver's license or other form of official identification.

References in periodicals archive ?
It used to be that shredding your documents was protection enough, but with modern technology, identity thieves can access your information without ever leaving their home.
These proposals include the following actions: Amending the identity theft and aggravated identity theft statutes to permit the prosecution of identity thieves; creating a two-year mandatory sentence for convicted identity thieves available under the "aggravated identity theft" statute; and broadening the statute that criminalizes the theft of electronic data by eliminating the current requirement that the information must have been stolen through interstate communications.
Identity thieves may also steal a child's identity to commit other crimes, such as giving another person's identity to police at a traffic stop or during an arrest.
Stolen mail is still the major source of information for identity thieves.
But many civil libertarians are concerned that the "contactless" chips--as opposed to cards that only give up their information upon direct contact with a reader--lack adequate security precautions and are susceptible to unauthorized "sniffing" by identity thieves or government snoops hoping to gather information covertly from passport holders.
However, purchases and loans made by identity thieves in another person's name often cannot be simply erased.
There are two classes of tax scams: those in which taxpayers try to avoid taxes and those in which identity thieves use the tax law as a way to obtain sensitive personal information to use for illegal purposes.
Identity thieves also have used the identities of deceased individuals and prison inmates to apply for and obtain federal student aid.
The FACT Act requires regulators to devise a list of red flag indicators of identity theft, drawn from the patterns and practices of identity thieves.
This section will discuss how identity thieves obtain the necessary information in order to assume a victim's identity and the various ways in which identity thieves exploit the victim's personal information for their own personal benefit.
9 million--fell prey to identity thieves in the last year alone.
Identity thieves may pose as representatives of banks, Internet service providers, and even government agencies to get you to reveal your Social Ssecurity number (SSN), mother's maiden name, account numbers, and other identifying information.