Posts tagged "Identity Theft Prevention"
Based on a recent assessment of 40,000+ SSNs of children, it was found that more than 10% those SSNs were being used by someone other than the child, far in excess of the rate of misuse in the adult population. The study points out the major issues that surround child identity theft and why we need to start paying attention now. It is more prevalent than many think and the threat is growing. Here are a few of the statistics that were found:
- 4,311 or 10.2% of the children in the report had someone else using their Social Security number – 51 times higher than the 0.2% rate for adults in the same population
- Child IDs were used to purchase homes and automobiles, open credit card accounts, secure employment and obtain driver’s licenses
- The largest fraud ($725,000) was committed against a 16 year old girl
Apple has been hit with a lawsuit in Florida alleging the company is violating iPhone user’s privacy and committing computer fraud. The case came in response to news that the iPhone maintains a time stamped location log, and that data is also stored on user’s computers.
The lawsuit was filed in Federal court in Tampa Florida on April 25 by two customers who claimed Apple was tracking iPhone owner’s movements without consent, according to Bloomberg.
The case was filed after word that the iPhone and iPad with 3G support maintains an unencrypted log file showing where users are based on cell tower triangulation. That file is transferred to user’s computers during the sync process with iTunes and is maintained as part of the device’s backup file collection.
Major data breaches like the recent Epsilon Breach occur frequently, even if you don’t hear about all of them. With all the publicity surrounding this particular breach, people have been asking how to remove themselves from some of those marketing lists that are frequently compromised.
Opting our of marketing databases is one way to lower your risk of becoming a data breach victim.
So, how do I get out of marketing data bases?
Most databases allow you to opt out of having them share and sell your information, you just need to find out how. Many sites make it tricky to get this done, but most sites that are selling or harvesting your information allow you to do so one way or another.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, Identity Theft still tops the annual list of consumer complaints. The list was released last Tuesday and Identity Theft was #1 for the 11th year in a row with more than 250,000 complaints. Identity theft accounts for 19% of all consumer complaints received by the FTC last year.
Why is this such a lingering, time-tested problem? Because most people, most businesses, read about it being such a terrible problem, and then go off an do little about it. Corporations fail to train their employees on personal identity theft, and that lack of skill and prevention framework seeps into the workplace. This, in turn, leads to the loss of more data, customer records, employee files and intellectual capital.
The report also states that the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. area ranks #1 in the nation for identity theft complaints per capita. Number 2 on that list is Brownsville, Texas followed by Dunn, N.C.
In a town with a population of about 3,000 people it seems that almost all the citizens of Bennett, Colorado have had their identity stolen. The scheme was simple and it was easy to fall victim. Identity thieves apparently used skimmers to extract credit and debit card numbers from individuals. Skimmer scams can happen when the criminal installs a “skimming” device over the card slot of an ATM, debit or credit card reader. The skimmer then reads the magnetic strip as the user unknowingly passes their card through it.
In the case of Bennett, Colorado it is believed that this was done at a local King Soopers gas pump. The skimmer is gone now and authorities are on the hunt for the thief. King Soopers has denied that any of the fraudulent activity happened at their gas pumps and authorities have also said that they knew this was a crime spree for the past few weeks. In the meantime, many of the victims who used debit cards are without those funds because its the same as using cash. The average amount stolen was around $700 and more people are coming forward every day.