Step 1: The acquisition of personal data
The first step of identity larceny is when thieves steal your personal data. This can occur through a variety of means, including hack, imposter and trickery, phishing scams, redirecting or intercepting chain mail, physical larceny — like when a criminal digs through your trash for identifying information — and datum breaches .
Data breaches are among the most popular ways identity thieves collect personal data. This was made clear over the summer when hackers stole the secret information of about 80 percentage of working Americans. Although thieves made out with our Social Security numbers, addresses, and about everything else, it ’ randomness crucial to remember this doesn ’ thymine form identity larceny. Thieves have merely stolen our personal data ; they haven ’ metric ton made use of it. Identity larceny is what happens next .
Step 2: The use of the stolen identity
The future step of identity larceny occurs when thieves begin using the personal data they ’ ve collected. Often this will result in a series of trials, wherein thieves test the robustness of the stolen information. If the datum proves accurate, scammers will either undertake to steal more information from the same informant or take immediate action on the data at their administration.
Some of the most common ways thieves use this personal data include :
- Opening new accounts
- Taking over existing accounts
- Using the victim’s debit/credit cards to make purchases
- Selling the identity on the black market
- Acquiring additional identity-related documents, like health insurance cards and passports
- Filing fraudulent tax returns
- Committing insurance fraud
- Renting and stealing rental cars
Step 3: The discovery and correction of identity theft
Some forms of identity larceny can be caught right field away, like the misapply of recognition or debit cards. unfortunately, many types of imposter can go undiscovered for years, like when identity thieves prey children. additionally, crooks can use a victim ’ s insurance information to receive medical care. many times, victims don ’ metric ton realize this until they seek health caution treatment and are denied for past due balances .
These delays are fabulously badly news for victims because the longer it takes to catch identity larceny, the more accounts criminals can compromise.
The correction summons can be a drawn-out one. On average, it takes round 100 to 200 hours and six months to complete. Depending on how long your identity larceny remained undetected, it could take thousands of hours and not be fully resolved for years. While this visualize can be a bite overwhelm, the good news program is you don ’ t have to go through this alone .
If you ’ re an Allstate Identity Protection member, we ’ ll be by your side through the wholly work. We can besides help you get proactive about preventing identity larceny in the first place. To gain more control over your data today, try our ten-spot tips for protecting your digital footprint .