Despite the advent of the Internet, the main source of private data for identity thieves continues to be stolen or misplaced purses and wallets. Take care to safeguard the important personal information you carry publicly every day. If your security is compromised, report it to law enforcement immediately and contact an attorney about possible legal remedies.
Northern Virginia Credit Repair Attorney
If your credit rating is damaged because of identity theft, we can help. The law office of Thomas R. Breeden, P.C., in Manassas, Virginia, has helped hundreds of people remove black marks from the credit report and re-establish their good name. Call 703-659-0188 for Initial consultation.
Identity Theft – An Overview
Identity theft, also known as identity fraud, occurs when someone uses another person’s important personal identifying information for improper purposes. If you suspect you have been the victim of identity theft, an experienced and skilled attorney from Thomas R. Breeden, P.C. in Manassas, VA, can advise you of the possible ramifications and potential legal remedies.
Identity Theft from a Federal Perspective
Millions of Americans are victimized by identity theft each year. If you have been the victim of identity fraud, a lawyer can help you to sort out what steps you can take to protect yourself from here and what possible legal remedies may be available to you.
Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft
In this modern time of electronic transactions and widespread data sharing, every consumer should take precautions to protect his or her private identifying information. In the wrong hands, your important personal information can be used fraudulently and to your detriment. Identity theft can cause financial and personal loss. If you suspect you have been the victim of identity fraud, an attorney can give you advice about what steps you should take and what legal remedies might be available to you.
Tips for Victims of Identity Theft
Sometimes even people who take careful precautions to guard their private information from identity theft are victimized through no fault of their own. Important personal data is stolen by dishonest employees or contractors from banks, insurance companies, government agencies, medical providers and other third parties maintaining private information of customers and clients. Laptops containing such data are lost or stolen with surprising frequency. Commercial or government databases may be compromised. Once personal identifying information is stolen, it may be sold in batches on the black market to other identity thieves. If you have been the victim of identity theft through these or other methods, an attorney with knowledge of consumer protection law can advise you about possible legal remedies.
Legal Remedies for Identity Theft
The body of law that deals with identity theft is large and evolving, criminal and civil, state and federal. If your important private identifying information is stolen and you become the victim of identity theft or identity fraud, an attorney well-versed in consumer protection can educate you about the law and advise you about possible legal remedies.
Identity Theft Links
IdentityTheft.Gov This is the official federal governmental site for victims of identity theft.
Federal Bureau of Investigation The FBI explains common fraud schemes and how to protect yourself.
Identity Theft and Your Social Security Number Electronic fact sheet about identity theft with important government links.
California Office of Privacy Protection “California is the first state to have an agency dedicated to promoting and protecting the privacy rights of consumers.” Detailed consumer information about identity theft.
Frequently Asked Questions about Identity Theft
Q: What is identity theft?
A:Identity theft, also known as identity fraud, is the misappropriation and use of a person’s private data for improper purposes. Typical data stolen and used in identity theft includes Social Security numbers (SSNs), drivers’ license numbers, passports, taxpayer ID numbers, account numbers, PIN numbers, passwords and dates of birth. The thief may try to use the information to access the owner’s accounts, to purchase merchandise, to obtain credit, to open new accounts, to secure employment, to enter into contracts or leases or to commit other crimes using the stolen identity.
Q: Who are typical identity thieves?
A: Information is usually stolen by people known to the victim and who have his or her trust, such as relatives, friends, neighbors, household employees, in-home contractors and work colleagues. Other common perpetrators of identity theft can be employees of entities that routinely access personal information, such as those working for banks, credit card companies, insurance companies and even retailers and restaurants that routinely process credit card information. Of course, hackers and other criminals are also perpetrators.