Identity Theft And Credit Card Frauds

Identity theft needs to be taken seriously as it can affect your life. Many people do not understand it, though it is the most rapidly growing crime in the United States. Identity theft means that someone has taken over your identity and is using your personal information to make purchases and deals on your behalf - with out your knowing about it. You only come to know once your creditors are clamoring for their money. Committing identity theft to make huge purchases without your knowing could be considered a very mild consequence; as such theft can be committed for terrorism, industrial espionage, and other illegal activities, that can have larger consequences.

Protect yourself by caring for your personal data. Never give out personal information to strangers and people not required to have it. Fraudsters are known to seek your personal data, including your credit card numbers, and social security number on phone – purporting to call from your bank. Never deal with anonymous persons, whatever the enticement.

Never leave mail unattended in your mailbox. Have your box emptied daily, and if required, twice a day. Fraudsters make use of your bank statements and credit card statements to steal your identity. Try not to carry all your credit cards in your wallet. Take only the one you need for that day’s transaction, leaving the rest at home in a secure location.

Credit Card Frauds

The most common fraud committed by identity theft fraudsters is using your credit cards for fraudulent transactions. In most cases such identity theft frauds are committed online to make huge purchases. Let us look at the kind of frauds identity theft fraudsters commit using your credit card.

The first is intercepting your mail and laying their hands on your credit card, or a replacement card. You are not aware that your bank has mailed you your card, and the fraudsters make merry. Banks, today, take precautions by sending cards that need to be activated by the legitimate cards holders by confirming their identity through various means, including social security number. Even if you have received your card safely, you need to be cautious when using it. You may be using your card at a legitimate place of commerce, but an employee can ‘skim’ your card with a second swipe on an electronic strip. Identity theft fraudsters later buy this information and have the card cloned. This cloned card is as good and genuine as your original card.

When identity Fraud fraudsters use credit cards online to make purchases, the online merchants are not able to verify the true identity of the person making the purchases. After the fraud has been detected, the card issuer or the bank usually pays the cardholder back, but the cost is charged to the account of the online merchant who sold the products without verifying the identity of the purchaser.

Many legitimate cardholders are known to resort to what is known as Cyber Shoplifting. They make those online purchases, and later claim that they had not authorized those purchases!