What is Identity Theft?

Often you hear stories relating to identity theft and misuse of personal information. Whether it’s a retailer that loses credit card details or computer files loses computer files inside a credit bureau. Your identity is important, but what can you do? The first step is to understand the risks and issues of identity theft, so what is identity theft?

Identity theft is when someone steals your personal information, e.g. Social Security number and acts on behalf of you in order to make financial transactions or carry out illegal activities in your name. The thief can live a lifetime on you name ruining your credit and damaging your reputation. They could commit other frauds such as getting a new job to get a new mortgage, which could affect every aspect of your life.

Quick Facts

Identity Theft: Someone who identifies as you using your personal details such as bank account details to make financial transactions. The thief can take out a mortgage or get a drivers license in your name. Whatever actions they take you will be held responsible for their illegal actions. That’s why you need to make effort to avoid damages and keep your name clear of illegal consequences.

Financial Fraud: Often known as credit or debit card theft. Charges are made on your card to any retailer or business. The thief does not claim your identity but simply use your card to make illegal transactions.

It can be a nightmare having your identity stolen. There are many things you can do to protect yourself.

Keeping you identity safe always comes down to being aware of the problem, when giving out your personal details and taking steps to protect yourself.

Experts agree shredding is the best way of disposing personal and sensitive information.