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Identity Theft in West Virginia

Did you know that West Virginians reported more than 840 cases of identity theft in a recent 12-month period? This crime is on the rise throughout America and represents a billion-dollar industry for criminals.

The IRS recently informed taxpayers that tax-related identity theft is an issue. Unfortunately, honest citizens often aren't aware of the problem until they try to file their tax return for the year and are informed that one has already been submitted - and their much-anticipated refund went to the impostors who turned in the fraudulent, earlier version.

Criminals use identity theft to steal the information they need - social security numbers, birth dates, bank account numbers, and more - to gain access to medical care, even cosmetic surgery; to open up lines of credit at banks and car dealerships; to pass a background check for an apartment; or to gain employment using a name with a clean history, among other uses.

If you live in West Virginia, there are several companies that offer Identity Theft Protection services that monitor your personal information 24/7, flagging any suspicious activity immediately and taking steps to protect your credit rating and reputation. Given that many cases of identity theft aren't discovered until months or years later, these services offer invaluable peace of mind knowing that any problems will be handled immediately and effectively.

You should also take precautions to ensure that your identifying details do not wind up in the hands of the wrong people. Even though it is common for physicians' offices and other service providers to request your social security number, you have the right to refuse to give it, to ask why that information is necessary, and to find out how your information is protected at that location. Be careful not to disclose too many details in social media, thus providing would-be identity thieves with enough information to answer your "challenge" questions and bypass the login and password requirement. In these and other ways, you can make it less likely that identity theft will impact your life.


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Identity Theft In The News

Sue Lani Madsen: HIPAA Identity Theft - Sort Of

If you're still waiting for your prescription refill authorization or a call back for a physician referral, it might have stalled on my mother's kitchen table. The problem started over a year ago. At ...

Published:  Sat, 21 Jul 2018 05:27:00 GMT

Protect Your Kids From Identity Theft by Freezing Their Credit

If you've taken steps to protect yourself from identity theft, good on you. But if you're a parent, you're not done yet-your kid could very well end up as a victim. More than 1 million children in the ...

Published:  Thu, 19 Jul 2018 07:36:00 GMT

Former Alabama bank president pleads guilty to identity theft in $100,000 fraud scheme

A former bank president already sentenced to federal prison has now pleaded guilty on state charges for issuing fraudulent loans and using the money for himself. John Kevin Vann, 57, pleaded to a char...

Published:  Fri, 20 Jul 2018 16:56:00 GMT

Can You Survive Identity Theft

Common sense is the best defense against identity theft - creating strong passwords for online accounts and monitoring personal credit reports and credit card statements are good, basic steps to take ...

Published:  Fri, 20 Jul 2018 13:03:00 GMT

Man charged with Oak Park identity theft pleads in Macomb County cases

A Washington Township man who posed as a residential builder has pleaded guilty or no contest in several criminal cases for defrauding people out of thousands of dollars. James M. Ciarmataro, 31, plea...

Published:  Sat, 21 Jul 2018 09:23:00 GMT

Aging Well: Protecting seniors from identity theft

Are the seniors in your life as protected as they can be from threats of identity theft Credit experts often recommend a credit freeze, also called a security freeze, as a way to protect personal inf...

Published:  Thu, 19 Jul 2018 16:28:00 GMT

Teacher in identity theft case sentenced to 48 hours in jail, two years probation

KNOX COUNTY - Ashley Wright, a Knox County Schools teacher who pleaded guilty to identity theft charges and stealing thousands of dollars from friends, family, and other Knox County Schools teachers, ...

Published:  Thu, 19 Jul 2018 13:19:00 GMT

She used her DMV computer and stolen mail to commit ID theft. Now she'll do prison time

A clerk inside the California Department of Motor Vehicles who was accused of using her computer access to commit bank fraud and identity theft was sentenced in federal court in Sacramento to three ye...

Published:  Thu, 19 Jul 2018 17:11:00 GMT

Tips to guard against ID theft while on vacation

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - As millions of Americans get ready to relax at the beach, visit theme parks, set sail on a cruise or explore exotic destinations this summer, AAA Tidewater Virginia is reminding ...

Published:  Fri, 20 Jul 2018 09:30:00 GMT

2 Honduran contractors charged with ID theft, fraud, tax evasion

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Construction contractors, shell companies and tax fraud -- those are some of the charges that have been filed against two Honduran citizens in U.S.District Court in Jacksonville. ...

Published:  Fri, 20 Jul 2018 13:23:00 GMT

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