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Criminals are targeting New Yorkers for identity theft, with almost 19,000 residents reporting this violation of their privacy and security to the Federal Trade Commission every year. These thieves use stolen social security numbers, credit cards, and other personal data to get jobs, to obtain medical care and expensive cosmetic procedures, to take out payday loans in several states at once, and even as aliases during their criminal activities.
Identity theft can cost its victims dearly in terms of time and money, as proving that purchases made and accounts opened were done so fraudulently can be difficult at best; sadly, some individuals have also experienced false imprisonment for crimes committed in their names.
How can New York residents prevent becoming victims of identity theft? The best approach is to make sure that personal information is never taken in the first place. One prime piece of information is social security numbers, so it is best to leave any documents bearing SSNs (including the cards themselves) in a safe place at home rather than carrying it in a purse or wallet. While many businesses will request SSNs on their forms, New Yorkers should first ask why it is being requested, how it will be used, and most importantly, how it will be safeguarded by the business itself.
Another useful tactic is to make use of Identity Theft Protection services. These companies give customers peace of mind by monitoring their social security numbers, credit cards and bank accounts, and other personal information around the clock. Any potentially criminal, unauthorized activity is flagged immediately and blocked from happening again, preventing customers from being victimized over a long period of time without even realizing it.
While identity theft is a frightening prospect, the average New Yorker can protect him- or herself from being victimized with the help of both paid services and wise decision-making with respect to their personal information.
Identity Theft In The News
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - A Lansing man is facing up to 20 years in prison for his role in an international identity theft and tax refund fraud scheme. On Monday, a jury convicted Oghevwakpo Igboba of one ...
Published: Thu, 20 Sep 2018 18:57:00 GMT
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - Starting Sept. 21, 2018, a new federal law will offer you and your children more protection from identity theft. You will be able to place a security freeze on your credit ...
Published: Thu, 20 Sep 2018 14:54:00 GMT
LifeLock, a leading Identity Theft protection service, receives the highest ranking available from TopConsumerReviews.com. We're pleased to give LifeLock a first-place ranking as our top pick for Iden...
Published: Wed, 19 Sep 2018 10:41:00 GMT
Staying offline doesn't keep you safe from online threats. That's bad news for many older Americans. According to a 2017 study by the Pew Research Center, 34 percent of senior citizens in the U.S. don ...
Published: Wed, 19 Sep 2018 07:17:00 GMT
Discussions about ID theft often involve hackers and cyberattacks gaining access to consumer and payment data. But action from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Tuesday (Sept. 18) showed how ...
Published: Tue, 18 Sep 2018 19:17:00 GMT
Identity theft: 700 block of Foothill Boulevard. After hiring a forensic accountant to secure documents of what she believes to be fraudulent activity on her bank account, a woman reported to the sher...
Published: Wed, 19 Sep 2018 20:50:00 GMT
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