What is identity theft? Identity Theft Facts

With all the publicity in the media you probably know what identity theft is. But we have provided information for those of you who are still wondering... What is Identity Theft?

Identity theft happens when another person assumes your identity by stealing and using your personal information, such as your Social Security number, bank or credit card account numbers or other information, with the purpose of stealing your money or committing other crimes.

Identity theft is not new, it has been a problem for many years, but the increase in technology has made identity theft easier for criminals, but more complicated for consumers and identity theft victims.

People who have had their identities stolen can spend years and thousands of dollars cleaning up the nightmare that these callous criminals have made of the victim's good name and credit record.

It takes the average victim a year to realize that their identity has been stolen. Victims have been known to lose their jobs, be refused loans, education, or housing. Some people have even reported being arrested for crimes they didn't commit.

Criminals have found many methods to steal the identities of innocent people. Advances in technology constantly introduce new methods for criminals to steal identities. Some methods include: