Archive for August, 2014

Business owner suspects arson was meant to cover ID theft

Sunday, August 31st, 2014


By Joe Goldeen
Record Staff Writer


Posted Aug. 29, 2014 @ 10:00 pm
Updated Aug 29, 2014 at 10:19 PM


Article source: http://www.recordnet.com/article/20140829/NEWS/140839985

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Students can take steps to protect against identity theft

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

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This week marked the return of students to University of Missouri, Columbia College and Stephens College. It is an exciting experience but sometimes can be overwhelming as college students try to balance school, work and social life. Fighting fraud often doesn’t make their list of priorities.


Students often are unaware just how available their personal information can be. One example of this is through social media. It can be easy to share names, birth dates, phone numbers and other information on these websites, and those pieces of information potentially can be used by thieves to steal your identity.

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    Students consistently rank among the most frequently targeted for ID theft. One reason for this is because of their relatively clean credit history. They might not have established good habits for monitoring and detecting fraud.

    According to Javelin Strategy and Research, identity theft committed against people aged 18 to 24 took the longest to detect — 132 days on average — when compared to other age groups. The average cost of losses to this age group — $1,156 — was roughly five times more than the amounts lost by other age groups.

    College students should take the responsibility of protecting their information, and the Better Business Bureau recommends following these steps to fight identity theft on campus.

    • School mailboxes are not always secure and often can be accessed easily in a dorm or apartment. Have sensitive mail sent to a permanent address, such as a parent’s home or a P.O. Box. When paying a bill or sending financial information, drop it off at a post office in person.
    • Important documents should be stored under lock and key. This could include your Social Security card, passport, and bank and credit card statements. Shred credit card offers because many are simply thrown away. This can prevent identity thieves from obtaining credit using your information.
    • Never lend your credit or debit card to anyone, even if they are a friend. Just say no if your friend wants you to co-sign for a loan or financing for items such as a TV. This could come back to haunt you in the future.
    • Make sure your computer has up-to-date antivirus and spyware software. Always install the latest updates to keep you safe online. Have strong passwords in place, using some combination of letters, numbers and other characters. You also can consider an online password manager.
    • Review your credit, debit and bank statements closely for any suspicious activity. The sooner you identify any potential fraud, the less you’ll sustain in the long run.
    • Be smart about your online shopping. Don’t shop or pay a bill online using a public or unsecured Wi-Fi connection. Some browsers might save your username, password or other data. Make sure you are using a legitimate and secure website that also has a privacy policy in place.
    • Check your credit report at least once a year with all three reporting bureaus for any suspicious activity or inaccuracies. You can do this for free by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com.

    Mike Harrison is regional director for the Mid-Missouri BBB. The BBB promotes sound advertising, selling and customer service practices that enhance customer trust and confidence in business.

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    on

    Saturday, August 30, 2014 12:00 am.


    Topics:

    Column,


    Education,


    Identity Theft,


    Better Business Bureau,


    Social Security Number,


    University Of Missouri,


    Stephens College,


    Criminal Law,


    Internet Privacy,


    Identity Score,


    University Of Missouri Columbia,


    Columbia College

    FACT CHECK See inaccurate information in this story? Tell us here.

    Article source: http://www.columbiatribune.com/business/saturday_business/students-can-take-steps-to-protect-against-identity-theft/article_f2394de0-25c8-5cc9-91ac-b58829413329.html

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Feds: Former Yosemite Lodge assistant manager siphoned $87000 from …

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

Local News

Fresno County sheriff’s deputies bust pot operation in Sierra foothills

Article source: http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/08/28/4093118/ex-yosemite-lodge-manager-indicted.html

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Man Gets 9 Years For Swindling Friend Out Of Life Savings

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A Minneapolis man was swindled out of his life savings when he tried to help a friend in need.

Investigators say Thomas Syzdek was going through a divorce and asked his friend, William Meredig, if he could stay with him.

During that time, Meredig suffered a stroke.

Investigators say Syzdek then had Meredig’s investment company issue a check for the balance of his account, worth more than $57,000 dollars.

“Along the way we learned of all the other crimes that Syzdek had been involved in. Other identity theft against friends, identity theft against employers,” Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said.

Meredig was tipped off when the IRS contacted him for failure to report the liquidation of his retirement account.

Investigators say Syzdek also illegally obtained credit cards in Meredig’s name.

A judge sent Syzdek to prison for nine years.

Article source: http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2014/08/29/mpls-man-becomes-identity-theft-victim-after-suffering-a-stroke/

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Family Identity Theft Is Ugly

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

Identity theft isn’t just the stuff of exciting movie and TV dramas; this happens in real life—and often. In fact, that Target breach that made headlines, Neiman Marcus, those 1. 2 Billion records the Russian cyber gang hacked: all identity theft.

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In 2012, according to one research firm, 12.6 million people in the U.S. alone were victims of ID fraud. This translates to this crime occurring every three seconds. If that isn’t bad enough, it’s estimated that one-third of ID theft is committed against the thieves’ own family members.

Sometimes a person learns this when requesting a copy of their credit report. Expecting to see a high score, they instead see pages and pages of fraudulent credit card activity—and a very damaged credit. The thief can even be the victim’s own mother. Or spouse. Or daughter, son, sister, brother.

As appalling as this is, it’s not the least bit unusual. It’s easy, for instance, for a parent to access their child’s name and Social Security number, then open up a phony account—even if the victim is literally a child. Most companies don’t check the ages, so that’s why this crime can go undetected for years.

The victim may not even learn of the crime until adulthood when they apply for their first credit card or student loan. Learning that the thief is a family member, particularly a parent, delivers a particularly hard blow, for obvious reasons. At least there’s no emotional impact when the thief is a stranger or even someone outside the family whom you know.

It can take quite some time to restore damaged credit. The Federal Trade Commission has an online guide that will help victims recover from the crime of identity theft.

Children can’t protect themselves, so adults need to do it for them. That often requires an investment of time and money.

Credit freezes or fraud alerts aren’t available to children until their identity is stolen.

Applying for a fraud alert every quarter to 6 months and being denied means no credit has been established.

Identity theft protection in many cases will help prevent child identity theft. However not all services offer this option. The good news is that child identity theft protection is generally less than $50.00 a year per child when the parent invests in a family plan.

Robert Siciliano is an identity theft expert to BestIDTheftCompanys.com discussing  identity theft prevention. For Roberts FREE ebook text- SECURE Your@emailaddress -to 411247. Disclosures.

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-siciliano/family-identity-theft-is-_b_5735748.html

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NY woman charged with ID theft in Wake

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

Community

Zebulon Middle students give us an A

Article source: http://www.easternwakenews.com/2014/08/29/4105803/ny-woman-charged-with-id-theft.html?sp=/99/586/648/649/

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Ruth to the Rescue: Protect yourself from identity theft

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

FOR MANY COLLEGE STUDENTS BACK-TO-SCHOOL MEANS HEADING BACK TO THE DORM OR THEIR OWN APARTMENT. IT IS A TIME WHEN THEIR PERSONAL INFORMATION CAN BECOME VULNERABLE. IF THEY ARE NOT CAREFUL. WE ALL KNOW IDENTITY THEFT IS A GROWING PROBLEM FOR ALL OF US. THIS TIME OF YEAR COLLEGE STUDENTS NEED TO BE VIGIL WANT. RUTH SPENCER HAS SOME ADVICE TO PROTECT THEIR PERSONAL INFORMATION. AND REALLY GOOD ADVICE FOR ALL OF US. COLLEGE STUDENTS ARE GOING TO SHARE A LOT OF PERSONAL INFORMATION AS THEY HEAD BACK TO CAMPUS, FROM FINANCIAL AID TO CABLE COMPANY THERE IS A LOT TO BE DONE AS THEY SETTLE IN. FOR THE IDENTITY THIEVES OUT THERE. THE STUDENTS ARE TEMPTING TARGETS. A LOT OF COLLEGE STUDENTS ARE PRETTY EXCITED TO GET BACK TO CAMPUS AFTER A SUMMER AT HOME. CYBER SECURITY EXPERTS WARN THOUGH THOSE YOUNG ADULTS ARE A TEMPTING TARGET FOR IDENTITY THIEVES. THEY HAVE NOT ESTABLISHED A CREDIT HISTORY. SO THEY HAVE A CLEAN SLATE IN THE CREDIT WORLD. NOT LIKELY TO CHECK THEIR CREDIT HISTORY OR HAVE IT CHECKED. UNTIL THEY GRADUATE FROM COLLEGE. STUDENTS WILL NEED TO SHARE PERSONAL INFORMATION. TO SET UP A BANK, ELECTRIC, CABLE ACCOUNTS. SO THEY NEED TO FOCUS ON KEEPING THEIR DATA AS SECURE AS POSSIBLE. THE BBB HAS THIS ADVICE. COLLEGE STUDENTS ARE OPEN AND TRUSTING. AND WANT TO TRUST PEOPLE. AND WE WANT THEM TO TO A SEASON POINT. BUT BE CAREFUL. ESPECIALLY THREE ITEMS. CYBER SECURITY EXPERTS ALSO SAY STUDENTS YOU SHOULD NOT BE AFRAID TO QUESTION YOUR SCHOOL’S PRIVACY POLICY. ANY NEW COLLEGE STUDENTS, I SAY ASK. WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH MY INFORMATION? HOW DO YOU STORE? ARE YOU LOCKING THAT FILE IN A CABINET WHEN I LEAVE IF THOSE ARE BASIC THINGS THAT KEEP INFORMATION STAVE. ONE MORE WORD OF ADVICE. STUDENTS, YOU SHOULD BE CAREFUL WHEN FIELDING CREDIT CARD OFFERS, IF YOU FILL OUT AN APPLICATION KEEP PERSONAL INFORMATION SECURE AND IF YOU ARE STARTING TO BUILD A CREDIT HISTORY THEN GET A FREE CREDIT REPORT ONCE A YEAR TO MAKE SURE

Article source: http://www.clickondetroit.com/consumer/consumer/ruth-to-the-rescue-protect-yourself-from-identity-theft/27783236

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How to protect yourself against identity theft

Saturday, August 30th, 2014

The elderly are often specifically targeted for identity theft. Identity theft and fraud against the elderly is a particularly insidious problem because in many instances, once the senior realizes that he or she has been scammed or made the victim of identity theft, he or she is often hesitant to report the crime out of embarrassment or shame—and the belief that it is just another example of them losing their mental acuity. In fact, anyone can be scammed or a victim of identity theft. Very intelligent people were scammed, for instance, by Bernie Madoff. A recent study by MetLife has shown a dramatic increase in scams perpetrated against people over the age of 60 in the last few years, and the problem is getting worse.

The elderly are also often targeted because they have savings and pensions that can provide easy pickings for identity thieves. The elderly, as a group, are more likely to have good credit scores and are less likely to apply for more credit, so stealing their identity provides more potential for financial gain. Unfortunately, often the people stealing the identities of the elderly are members of their own family, friends or caregivers. There have been many instances where rogue nursing home employees have stolen the identities of the residents of the nursing homes where they work if the facility does not properly protect the residents’ personal information data.

A person’s Social Security number is a key to identity theft. In the hands of an identity thief, a senior’s Social Security number can be used to access their credit report and make large purchases using the senior’s credit. Federal law prohibits the use of the Social Security number as the number for a person’s driver’s license, however despite calls from the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the investigatory agency of the federal government, Medicare still uses enrollees’ Social Security numbers as their Medicare identification number and it is prominently featured on their Medicare identification card. The federal government has resisted efforts to eliminate the use of the Social Security number as an identifier, often citing the cost of going to a different identifying number. A common Medicare-related identity theft scam starts with a senior receiving a call from a telemarketer who contacts the senior and tells him or her that he or she can receive medical services and equipment at no cost by merely providing their Medicare identification number. A large-scale fraud involving allegedly free supplies for diabetics was used by identity thieves in 2012 to obtain the Social Security numbers of Medicare recipients. The identity thieves then used the numbers to make false Medicare claims and to steal the identities of the Medicare recipients.

Article source: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-to-protect-yourself-against-identity-theft-2014-08-29?siteid=rss

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Santa Clarita Valley Detectives Seek Help With ID Theft Suspect

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station detectives are seeking the public’s help in identifying a woman suspected of using identity theft to steal tens of thousands of dollars, officials said Wednesday.


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Deputies received a report of a residential theft Aug. 17 in a Westridge neighborhood, part of the unincorporated Santa Clarita Valley.

santa-clarita-valley-detectives-seek-help-id-theft-suspectThe victim was contacted by her credit card company regarding a suspicious transaction — the purchase of a $23,000 Rolex watch.

Detectives believe the suspect, whose picture they obtained from a Bakersfield business where the watch was purchased, obtained personal information from the victim so she could order a replacement credit card.

The suspect then stole the replacement credit card from the victim by intercepting the FedEx package the suspect had sent to the victim’s resident, according to Sheriff’s Station detectives.

The suspect then reportedly drove to Bakersfield and purchased the expensive watch, triggering concern from the credit card company and a subsequent call to the victim, who notified authorities.

After the purchase, detectives were able to track down surveillance photos of their female suspect, who they believe made the fraudulent purchase.

The unidentified female suspect was described broadly in terms of ethnic background, to include either white or of Asian descent.

Detectives think the victim might have been targeted due to a similar ethnic background to the suspect shown in the photographs. They’re also investigating the possibility of the female shown in the photograph being connected to other identity theft related crimes.

Anyone with information about incident or if you know who the woman shown in the photographs is please contact Detective Elliott at 661-255-1121 or at GAElliot@lasd.org – You can remain Anonymous, call “LA Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org.


Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or drop us a line at community@hometownstation.com.


Santa Clarita Valley Detectives Seek Help With ID Theft SuspectKHTS AM 1220 - Santa Clarita News - Santa Clarita Radio


Article: Santa Clarita Valley Detectives Seek Help With ID Theft Suspect
Source: Santa Clarita News
Author: Perry Smith


Article source: http://hometownstation.com/santa-clarita-news/crime/sheriff-news/santa-clarita-valley-detectives-seek-help-id-theft-suspect

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Ex-Yosemite Lodge manager indicted on fraud, ID theft charges

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Local News

Three-alarm fire hits apartment building in central Fresno

Article source: http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/08/28/4093118/ex-yosemite-lodge-manager-indicted.html

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