Identity Theft Fraud: 16 Ways Thieves Steal And
Find Your Information
According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) identity thieves employ a variety of
tactics to get your personal information, such as:
1. Dumpster Diving: They rummage through trash
looking for bills or other paper with your personal information on it.
2. Skimming: They steal credit/debit card numbers
by using a special storage device when processing your card.
3. Phishing: They pretend to be financial
institutions or companies and send spam or pop-up messages to get you to reveal your personal
4. Changing Your Address: They divert your billing
statements to another location by completing a change of address form at the post office.
5. Old-Fashioned Stealing: They steal wallets and
purses; mail, including bank and credit card statements, pre-approved credit offers, new checks or tax information.
They steal personnel records or bribe employees who have access.
6. Pretexting: The use false pretenses to
obtain your personal information from financial institutions, telephone companies and other sources.
You many not realize how exposed you really are until you're the victim of
identity theft fraud. The following are pieces of public information that unscrupulous
identity thieves can use to their unlawful advantage:
10 Ways How Anyone Can Find
Out About You
1. Your current and previous address (from the U.S. Postal Service and
2. Any criminal convictions (from court records)
3. Whether you have a professional license (from licensing
4. Whether you have filed lawsuits or been a defendant in a lawsuit
(from court records)
5. If you've had speeding tickets, drunken driving convictions or
other marks on your driving records (from the driver's license bureau)
6. What cars, trucks, boats, planes you own (from state motor vehicle
7. Whether you have filed for bankruptcy or had liens placed against
your property (from court records)
8. What you have pledged as collateral for bank loans (from Universal
Commercial Code filings, usually in county recorders' offices)
9. What pieces of real estate you own and how much they're worth (from
county tax records)
10. Whether there's a warrant out for your arrest (from court records
and police agencies)
Preventing Identity Theft: 7 Steps You Can Take To Avoid Becoming A
Credit Report: Your Safety Precaution Against Identity Theft Fraud
Range: Learn Some Tips About Your FICO Score Grades
Resources: Government Agencies and National Organizations
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