How a Thief Steals Your Identity
How Identity Theft Occurs
Identity thieves will use a variety of methods and ruses to gain access to your personal information. This can range from impersonating an employee of a company or an official representative.
Other means of acquiring your personal information:
- Stealing records from an employer.
- Acting in collusion with an employee of a company or organization which has legitimate access to records.
- Obtaining credit reports by abusing their employer’s authorized access to credit reports.
- Impersonating someone such as a landlord, employer, or someone else who may have a legal right to the information.
- Hacking into a company or organisation which has your records on file, for example, a bank or a Govt. Department.
More common methods of stealing your personal credit card information:
- Rummaging through your household trash, or the trash of businesses or dumps in a practice known as "dumpster diving."
- Stealing credit and debit card numbers as your card is processed for a normal transaction by using a special information storage device concealed on their person. The credit card is quickly swiped through a small device, known as a "skimmer". These devices typically store the details of several hundred credit cards. As soon as possible, the "skimmer" device gets uploaded to a computer where other criminals process the information.
- Stealing wallets and purses containing identification and credit and bank cards.
- Stealing mail, including bank and credit card statements, pre-approved credit offers, new checks, or tax information.
- Completing a "change of address form" to divert your mail, and therefore critical information, to another location.
- Theft of personal information from your home.
Also see Identity Theft - What to do