Once a thief has your information what can they do with it? There are many ways that your identity could be used and only some of them will cause you immediate financial loss. It is important for you to watch and be aware of things that could cause you problems both short term and long term.
The first way your identity could be stolen and used is Credit Card Fraud. A thief may open new credit card accounts in your name. When they use the cards and don’t pay the bills, the delinquent accounts will appear on your credit report. It is important to monitor your credit report at least once a year so that you can dispute any accounts that are not yours. Also monitor the addresses that appear on your credit report. One of them might be the thief’s address. The identity thief might change the billing address of your credit card so that you no longer receive bills. Then they can run up charges on your account so you won’t see any problems for a while. That is why it is important to monitor and keep track of your accounts.
Phone or Utilities Fraud is another way to be a victim of identity theft. The thief might open a new phone or wireless account in your name and then run up charges on your existing account. The thief might also use your name to get utility services such as electricity, heating or Cable Television.
Bank or Finance Fraud is a common type of identity theft. Once a thief has your information, they can create counterfeit checks using your name or account number. The thief can also open a new bank account in your name and write many bad checks. They might also clone your ATM or Debit card and withdraw money from your accounts, leaving you penniless. Finally, the thief might use your information to take out a loan. Then they don’t pay that back and leave you with the problems.
Another type of fraud that can be done with your information is getting government documents. They might get a driver’s license or ID card in your name with their picture. With that information, they also might be able to get a copy of your social security number and get government benefits. They may also use that information to file a false tax return using your information.
There are other things that your information could be used for such as getting a job using your social security number. The thief might sell your information to someone who does not have the proper documentation. Someone might use your information to rent a house or get medical services using your name. The information could be used to provide information to the police during an arrest. If they don’t show up for their court date, a warrant for arrest is issued in your name.
These are all things that your stolen identity could be used for, so it is important to monitor your information and keep track of information that you are giving out. Please remember to check your accounts often and be concerned about any irregularities.