Laws on identity theft and dealing with it

Laws on identity theft and dealing with itIdentity theft laws provide the legitimate rules governing the crimes where perpetrator gains the access to useful private information of victim. Afterwards, he or she uses such information for committing commit crimes. The information that is stolen could be victim’s financial details like bank account or their credit card numbers. It may feature indentifying information such as password or PIN number, email address, signature sample, birth dates, driving license numbers, etc. After obtaining these data, the thieves impersonate the victims to have a personal gain.

Fast growing crime in US

Law enforcement organizations know the frequency of this identity theft. Surprisingly, it has become more challenging to prevent them. The massive volume of information exchanged regularly on internet creates the ideal opportunity for tech savvy able criminals and hackers. They can steal confidential data without giving a single hint. However, as soon as identity theft is discovered, it is difficult for law enforcement to apprehend and locate the person responsible. Many identity thieves out there are preying upon Americans from overseas locations and this could be a major reason.

Ways to deal with it

Those who are concerned about the vulnerability of identity theft can adopt certain techniques which are designed to prevent such crimes. The information on prevention is likely to be available from reliable sources like consumer protection agency, US Department of Justice, General Office of state attorneys. Strategies to prevent becoming a real victim includes conducting daily scheduled financial report reviews, passwords which are unconventional and very challenging to even guess, shredding important documents prior to dumping them, etc.

Learning to identify the probable hints which suggest the occurrence of crime should be helpful. Unfamiliar entries upon credit reports, bills coming in mails addressed to a different person, unexpected calls from the debt collectors, and doubtful pre-approved finance offers could be the possible signs. Follow up immediately upon these occurrences for determining their exact cause. All those who are doubtful of an identity theft occurrence should report such incident to necessary law enforcement officers and credit agencies.

Taking necessary action 

In many cases, significant harm is already done to victims before figuring out the real cause. Through identity theft, a perpetrator takes away money from retirement accounts or banking, open up fresh credit account, draw upon existing aspects of credit, etc. Victims can consult an attorney as soon as possible. With the legal help from experienced lawyer, the damage done to reputation and credit can be repaired. Hiring an attorney would require spending some money and victims should take the necessary steps to bring back peace into their lives.

Often the victims are legally sued by their creditors for unaccountable credit balances which are created by this fraud. Such lawsuits may give rise to lien against his or her property and similar collection activities by a creditor. The attorney may prevent such occurrences by forcing the concerned creditor to genuinely prove the validity of the debt.

After stopping the legitimate action against his or her client, the attorney may communicate with credit agencies to ensure that corrective action is taken. As soon as the perpetrator is identified, the lawyer may pursue the civil fraud case.

Image credit: Benoit Daoust