It seems like thieves are continuously discovering new and varied ways to access financial accounts and steal the identity of the account holder. Identity theft has become a serious problem throughout California as well as the rest of the United States. In fact, numerous consumer protection alerts are posted on a weekly basis warning consumers of the latest techniques being used.
Every day, the majority of Americans post personal information on social media accounts. Savvy internet hackers are able to access this information. Then, they are able to match this information to data gathered from banking sites that they have hacked into. This combination gives them everything they need to bypass most security systems and gain access to the individual’s accounts.
In addition to gaining access to accounts, these hackers also have the information needed to open up new accounts for their own personal gain. These accounts are based upon the Social Security Number and credit history of the unsuspecting victim. Then, once the damage has been done, the individual discovers that his or her identity has been stolen and damage has been inflicted upon his or her credit report.
Identity theft is a common consumer protection problem, and there is little that the individual can do to prevent it from occurring. Being careful in what one shares on social media is a start; however, one must also be vigilant in protecting other sensitive information such as account numbers and Social Security Numbers. Regardless of the protective measures that a California resident takes, there is always the possibility that information will be stolen and one’s identity will be compromised. If this happens, the individual will most likely need legal assistance in quickly stopping and recovering from the damage inflicted.
Source: CBS Philly, “Identity Theft Still A Problem Despite Increased Security“, Feb. 6, 2017