Why Is Identity Theft So Common?

What is the most common way of identity theft?

Financial identity theft.

This is the most common form of identity theft — when someone uses another person’s information for financial gain.

For instance, a fraudster may use your bank account or credit card numbers to steal money or make purchases, or use your Social Security number to open a new credit card..

What puts you at risk for identity theft?

You use the same simple password for multiple online accounts. Security experts agree that using weak passwords is one of the most common bad habits that puts consumers at high risk for identity theft. … Shockingly, “password” and “123456” are still among the most popular passcodes.

What are 4 effects of identity theft?

A 2016 Identity Theft Resource Center survey of identity theft victims sheds light on the prevalence of this emotional suffering caused by identity theft: 74 percent of respondents reported feeling stressed. 69 percent reported feelings of fear related to personal financial safety. 60 percent reported anxiety.

Are identity thieves ever caught?

Identity thieves almost never get caught In a study done in 2006, “only 1 in 700 identity theft suspects were arrested by federal authorities (0.14%).” Just to provide some perspective and comparison, 44.3% of violent crime suspects were arrested as well as 15.8% of alternative property crimes.

What is needed to steal my identity?

How your name and address can lead to identity theft. … This can include details like Social Security number, birthdate, or name and address. Depending on what identity thieves find, they can do things like open new credit accounts, steal from existing accounts or commit other crimes using a fake identity.

Can you go to jail if someone steals your identity?

Yes, a person can go to jail for committing identity theft. … Identity theft is often the first step to bank fraud, credit fraud, or other types of crime that add up to large amounts of stolen money or property that can then be effectively prosecuted in court for greater penalties, like jail time.

How bad is identity theft really?

Identity theft can happen to anyone and lead to a number of problems. It can damage your credit and disqualify you from loans, stall your tax refund, and drain your bank account — to name but a few outcomes. In more severe cases, it can even get you wrongfully arrested.

Why is identity theft so bad?

Damaged credit: If an identity thief steals your Social Security number (SSN), opens new accounts in your name and never pays, it could ruin your credit history. Not only can this impact your ability to get credit, but it can also hurt your job prospects and increase your auto and homeowners insurance premiums.

What do you do if someone steals your identity?

If someone steals your identity, you have the right to:create an FTC Identity Theft Report.place a one-year fraud alert on your credit report.place a seven-year extended fraud alert on your credit report.get free copies of your credit report.get fraudulent information removed (or “blocked”) from your credit report.More items…

What are the first signs of identity theft?

Clues That Someone Has Stolen Your InformationYou see withdrawals from your bank account that you can’t explain.You don’t get your bills or other mail.Merchants refuse your checks.Debt collectors call you about debts that aren’t yours.You find unfamiliar accounts or charges on your credit report.More items…

Can someone go to jail for identity theft?

Incarceration. A conviction for an identity theft crime can result in time spent in jail or prison. In general, a conviction for a misdemeanor offense can lead to up to a year in jail, while felony sentences can result in several years or more in prison.

Which is the most common age group for victims of identity theft?

16 or olderU.S. residents age 16 or older, were victims of one or more incidents of identity theft in 2014 (figure 1). This was similar to findings in 2012. Among identity theft victims, existing bank (38%) or credit card (42%) accounts were the most common types of misused information.

How do you survive identity theft?

If you’re a victim of identity theft, follow these steps to protect yourself.File a claim with your identity theft insurance, if applicable.Notify companies of your stolen identity.File a report with the Federal Trade Commission.Contact your local police department.Place a fraud alert on your credit reports.More items…