Careful!!! It’s SENSITIVE: The 5 Major Types of ID Theft
When most people think of identity theft, they think of stolen credit cards or online hacking scams. What they’re missing is the fact that identity theft encompasses several other areas of life.
Yes, stolen credit cards are a serious issue. However, banks and credit card companies are doing a good job of letting people know when there is suspicious activity on their accounts. They either shut down the card or at least call to verify the charges.
So, what we need to know are the other areas of identity theft:
- Financial ID Theft: A thief takes out new credit in someone else’s name. If the victim doesn’t let the creditor know about the fraudulent credit within the 60-day time period allowed by the U.S. federal government (Regulation E), he or she will have to pay the fraudulent charges.
- Driver’s License ID Theft: A thief uploads his or her picture along with a victim’s data to a website that then sends a fraudulent driver’s license. The victim gets stopped for speeding, and when the officer runs his license through the DMV database, finds out there’s an arrest warrant in some state he’s never visited.
- Social Security ID Theft: Someone (oftentimes an illegal citizen) fraudulently uses someone else’s Social Security number to get a job. The employer files a 1099 or W-2 in the name of the victim, who learns about the crime when the IRS says he or she earned more money than originally claimed. Now, the victim owes more taxes for the extra income.
- Criminal ID Theft: A criminal is arrested and gives a victim’s confidential information to the police. The criminal is released on bail and doesn’t show up for court. Now, there’s a warrant out for the victim’s arrest — for a crime he or she didn’t commit.
- Medical ID Theft: A criminal poses as a victim and uses his or her name, birth date, Social Security number, and/or health insurance information to get medical care. The criminal’s blood type, allergies to medication and funky diseases are now in the victim’s permanent medical files. This is the most dangerous form of identity theft, since the medical misinformation can seriously harm you or even kill the victim.
We read about data breaches on a daily basis. All types of employers and companies are losing data and there are laws — both federal and on the state level in most states — that have compliance requirements for companies of every size. When data breaches occur in companies that don’t have the compliance parameters in place, the fines and penalties can be very expensive.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: This post is Part I in a series: In the next article, we’ll cover what corporations need to be aware of with regard to data breach, identity theft and compliance trends in order to help protect the business, its executives and employees.]
Vistage CE Member and entrepreneur Julie Ryan is an inventor, author and speaker whose sold inventions throughout the world via her own companies and licensing agreements with global medical companies. Julie has founded ten successful corporations in various industries including the medical, natural gas, long-term care, advertising and marketing fields. Currently, Julie owns and operates five companies involved in the development, manufacturing, marketing and distribution of a variety of products. Find out more about Julie at JulieRyan.biz.