Define / History of identity theft. Avoiding common ways Worksheet.

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The term "Identity Theft" originated in the 1990s and refers to an action in one of four categories: Financial Identity Theft (using someone else’s identity to obtain goods and services, fraud); Criminal Identity Theft (pretending to be someone else when picked up for a crime); Identity Cloning (assuming someone else’s identity in daily life) and Business or Commercial Identity Theft (using a business name to which one is not entitled to obtain credit, fraud).

Some people prefer the word "fraud" to "theft", it is more technically accurate in a legal sense, the media prefer the term "theft" as it’s more emotionally charged. Either way it’s not good when it happens. So these links should help you understand exactly what it is, how it can happen and what to do about it if it happens to you.
Knowing your enemy and his methods is the first step in protecting yourself.


Home Office Identity Fraud Steering Committee
This Home Office Identity Fraud Steering Committee site can help you protect yourself, advises what to do if it happens to you and suggests where to get further help.

Direct Gov
Identity theft affects over 100,000 people every year. This Government site explains how criminals can obtain your personal details and how you can protect yourself.

Crime Reduction
Provides a technical description of exactly what identity theft (and identity fraud) is and how exactly it is defined legally. Plus it provides further information on what to do.

Computer Active!
Magazine writer Iain Thomson shows you some easy steps you can take to outwit the fraudsters and avoid the devastating effects or potential financial loss you might suffer.

Direct Gov: Young People
It’s not only people with houses and jobs that can suffer from Identity Theft, this Direct Gov site for young people explains how it can affect students, with even worse effects.

Equifax is one of the UK’s central credit reference agencies and who better has the statistics of how much identity theft is costing individuals and the country as a whole?


How Stuff Works: Money
This website prides itself on providing information on how everything works and Identity Theft is no exception, this article by Lee Ann Obringer makes it all understandable.

Office of Inspector General
Just being a student does not protect you from Identity Theft – they don't need to steal your money; they just take your name and reputation and use them to get cash.

ID Theft Gov
Find out what Identity Theft is all about and how government agencies are coordinating to deal with it with the help of the President's Identity Theft Task Force.

National Criminal Justice Reference Service
Provides a legally technical description of what identity theft (and identity fraud) are and provides further information on what to do if you become a victim of either.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corp
Despite the very best efforts of law enforcement the problem of Identity Theft is on the increase and while individuals are usually protected they can suffer financial losses.

Identity Theft Program
Don’t Panic. Here’s a very detailed set of worksheets describing exactly what actions you should take if you have been the victim of any type of Identity Theft crime.


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Last updated August 17, 2007 2:30 PM