- Open new credit cards in your name
- Make fraudulent purchases
- Log in to personal accounts (email, social media, bank, etc…)
- Open new phone and utility accounts in your name
- Clone your ATM or debit card
- Change your billing address
- Obtain a new driver’s license or official ID
- Use your identity when questioned by police
It’s important to understand that identity theft can happen to anyone at any time. Your identity is built on multiple layers that include more than just your social security number. What we call your identity is the total collection of your personally identifiable information. This information is constructed from multiple data points and is specific to describing who you are. This is the information thieves want and why they want it. When they gain access to this information, they have the ability to, in essence, become you. If any of this information is stolen, we consider this a personal breach of your identity.
How quickly does a thief start to use your personal information?
One study* by the FTC showed that criminals acted on stolen information within 9 minutes of getting the data. It is important to understand how identity theft can happen and act quickly when it does.
*FTC Study: How fast will identity thieves use stolen info? – May 2017 (https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/05/how-fast-will-identity-thieves-use-stolen-info)
How Do Thieves Steal Your Identity?
What’s the one thing we ask when we see a magician make something disappear? How did they do that? When you are watching a performer, you’re left confused by the sleight of hand, but in the end, it is fun and entertaining. The fun stops when the magician is an identity thief and we notice things in our life are disappearing. It may seem like magic when someone else mysteriously has access to your information, but knowing how identity theft happens removes the magic and puts the control back in your hands. So, how do thieves steal an identity? Here are a few of the most common ways this can happen:
The more informed people like you are getting, the more creative thieves become. Understanding these common methods of identity theft allows you to take the first step in protecting yourself and your family. The best part is, you are not in this alone and you shouldn’t have to constantly worry. IdentityIQ is here to help! Simply put, we actively monitor and protect your identity so you can focus on the things in life that matter most to you. We not only actively monitor for anything suspicious, but with IdentityIQ you will get the security of knowing that our experts are here to help when it matters most.