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Identity Theft

Identity Theft. Outline. Definitions Methods used Ways to prevent What if it happens US Laws on Identity Theft and Privacy Organization that help. What is Identity Theft. Fastest growing crime in America Affect everyone regardless of age, gender race, or status

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Identity Theft

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  1. Identity Theft

  2. Outline • Definitions • Methods used • Ways to prevent • What if it happens • US Laws on Identity Theft and Privacy • Organization that help

  3. What is Identity Theft • Fastest growing crime in America • Affect everyone regardless of age, gender race, or status • Almost 10 million American victimized last year • 41% increase over the last year • Cost to the economy $53 Billion

  4. What is Identity Theft (Cont.) Two classes of crime related to identify theft • Account takeover • Thief acquires person’s existing credit • Used to purchase products and services • Victim discovers on monthly statement • Identity theft (Application fraud / true name fraud) • Thief uses SSN etc. to open new accounts • Used to purchase products and services • Victim unaware for extended periods of time

  5. Methods Used • Dumpster diving • Stealing mail • Fraudulent access of credit files • Work place access • Shoulder surfing at ATM, phone booths • Personal data from online sources

  6. Three most important things • Carefully check your credit report twice a year • Sign-up for credit monitoring service • Regularly check your public records • Government Records • Google search

  7. Sources of Risk • Know your personal information • Personal Identification y Number (e.g., USA SSN) • Driver’s license • Credit cards • Bank account • Mothers maiden name • Address and phone number • Anything else that helps impersonate you

  8. Key Elements • Personal Identifier (SSN) is the key to many accounts • Release SSN only when necessary • Do not carry SSN card in your wallet • Avoid putting SSN on checks and drivers license • Don’t allow merchants to add it to checks by hand • If asked for SSN, ask if there is an alternative • If government asks, look for privacy notice • Don’t use it for PINs and Passwords

  9. Things You Can Do • Remove your name from marketing lists of the three main credit bureaus Equifax, Experian, Trans Union by calling (800) 5-OPTOUT • Limit pre-approved credit offers • If tossed into garbage – gold mine for ID theft • Install a locked mailbox at your home • Limit postal theft

  10. Things You Can Do (Cont.) • Use SSL or other encryption when shopping on-line (www) • Phone calls • Never give SSN, Credit card number, personal data over the phone. • Scams - Today is your lucky day • Document Storage • Store personal information security in your home (safe)

  11. Make Your Data Secure • Encrypt electronic data when possible • Shred or otherwise destroy paper copies • When shopping – take credit card receipts • Never toss them in public trash cans • Carry receipts in wallet not the bag • Avoid business that are careless with your data • Avoid using credit cards where the risk is high • Some web sites

  12. If It Happens • Act quickly • Assess the situation • Trace the problem • Call the credit card company or credit bureau • They will have a fraud department to advise you

  13. If It Happens (Cont.) • Log all conversations • Credit card companies • Law enforcement • Include dates, names and phone number • Note time spent and expenses incurred • Send critical correspondence by certified mail with return receipt requested.

  14. If It Happens (Cont.) • Ask credit bureaus for names of credit grantors of fraudulent accounts • Ask, in writing, to remove inquiries generated due to fraud • Get copy of credit report every few months for the next year • Contact, in writing and via phone, all creditors involved in fraud • Get replacement credit cards

  15. If It Happens (Cont.) • Report crime to your local police • Contact the passport office • May need legal help, consumer law if: • Debtors won’t respond • Credit bureaus will not help • Contact bank • Stolen check, fraudulent bank accounts • Post office • If thief has filed change of address form

  16. U.S. Laws and Regulations • 18 U.S.C. 1028 "The Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act of 1998" • State Laws: http://www.lawresearch.com/private/identitytheft-State-Law.htm • California: Civil Code 1798.29 –Residents Civil Code 1798.82 – Business • Requires reporting database break-ins

  17. In Short • Know you are at risk • Take positive actions to prevent identity theft • If it happens, act quickly • Know your rights • Document your steps

  18. Additional Resources • http://identitytheft911.com • http://www.privacyrights.org • http://www.usdoj.gov/criminal/fraud/idtheft.html • http://www.identitytheft.org/ • http://www.idtheftcenter.com/index.shtml

  19. Magazines To Stay Current • SC Magazine: www.scmagazine.com • Disaster Recovery Journal: www.DRJ.com • Information Security www.infosecutitymag.com • Access Control & Security Systems: • www.securitysolutions.com

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