Identity Theft Awareness Week

Last Updated on by SCARS Editorial Team

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Identity TheftIdentity Theft Identity theft is when someone uses another person's personal identifying information, without their permission, to commit fraud or other crimes. In both the U.K. and the United States it is the theft of personally identifiable information. Identity theft deliberately uses someone else's identity as a method to gain financial advantages or obtain credit and other benefits, and perhaps to cause other person's loss. The person whose identity has been stolen may suffer adverse consequences, especially if they are falsely held responsible for the perpetrator's actions. Personally identifiable information generally includes a person's name, date of birth, social security number, driver's license number, bank account or credit card numbers, PINs, electronic signatures, fingerprints, passwords, or any other information that can be used to access a person's financial resources. can Happen to Anyone, Especially ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. Victims, but there are things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk.

Join the FTCFTC The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government whose principal mission is the enforcement of civil (non-criminal) U.S. antitrust law and the promotion of consumer protection. The FTC can also act as a clearinghouse for criminal reports sent to other agencies for investigation and prosecution. To learn more visit www.FTC.gov or to report fraud visit ReportFraud.FTC.gov and SCARS for free webinars and other events during Identity Theft Awareness Week, February 1 – 5, 2021.

We’ll highlight what you can do to protect your personal information, red-flag warning signs of possible identity theft, and what to do if identity theft happens to you. Here’s what’s on tap.

Identity Theft Awareness Week starts Today

Identify Theft Affects About 1/3 of All Scam Victims!

Be Aware & Learn What You Can Do!

Tell your friends & family, or people who follow you about Identity Theft Awareness Week.

Among the challenges that COVID-19 has brought, add a higher risk of identity theft to the mix. In the past year, we had about 1.4 million reports of identity theft, double the number from 2019. Repeatedly, identity thieves targeted government funds earmarked to help individuals and small businesses hard hit financially by the pandemic. Find out about identity theft in the age of COVID-19.

The FTC and its partners will co-host a series of free events. A webinar with the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) will focus on identity theft during the pandemic. Experts from the AARP FraudFraud In law, fraud is intentional deception to secure unfair or unlawful gain (money or other assets), or to deprive a victim of a legal right. Fraud can violate civil law (e.g., a fraud victim may sue the fraud perpetrator to avoid the fraud or recover monetary compensation) or criminal law (e.g., a fraud perpetrator may be prosecuted and imprisoned by governmental authorities), or it may cause no loss of money, property, or legal right but still be an element of another civil or criminal wrong. The purpose of fraud may be monetary gain or other benefits, for example by obtaining a passport, travel document, or driver's license, or mortgage fraud, where the perpetrator may attempt to qualify for a mortgage by way of false statements. A fraud can also be a hoax, which is a distinct concept that involves deliberate deception without the intention of gain or of materially damaging or depriving a victim. Watch Network and the FTC will take your questions during a Facebook Live event. And, the head of the FTC’s Identity Theft Program will join leaders of the ITRC on The Fraudian Slip podcast to talk about identity theft trends and the impact of COVID-19For a complete listing of events, visit ftc.gov/IDtheftweek.

In 2020, the biggest surge in identity theft reports to the FTC related to the dramatic and nationwide dip in employment. After the government expanded unemployment benefits to people left jobless by the pandemic, cybercriminals filed unemployment claims using the personal information of other people. In 2020, we received 394,280 reports about government benefits fraud — overwhelmingly about identity theft involving unemployment insurance benefits — compared with 12,900 reports in 2019.

People also reported identity theft in which criminals used their business or personal information to get money from government-sponsored loan programs designed to help small businesses weather the pandemic. People reported they learned about the fraud when they got notices telling them it was time to repay loans they never applied for. Last year, we received 99,650 reports of fraud involving business or personal loans, compared with 43,920 reports in 2019, before the pandemic began. While not all of these new reports can be attributed to the government relief effort, they are a sizeable share of the increase.

People told us about identity theft involving their federal stimulus payments from the IRSIRS The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the revenue & tax service of the United States federal government responsible for collecting taxes and administering the Internal Revenue Code (the main body of federal statutory tax law.) It is part of the Department of the Treasury and led by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, who is appointed to a five-year term by the President of the United States. The duties of the IRS include providing tax assistance to taxpayers; pursuing and resolving instances of erroneous or fraudulent tax filings; and overseeing various benefits programs. Visit www.IRS.gov to learn more. by reporting it as tax identity theft. In 2020, reports to the FTC of tax identity theft rose to 89,390, from 27,450 reports in 2019. While many of the reports concerned other types of tax identity theft, the report numbers began to swell when distribution of the stimulus payments began.

Later this month, we’ll publish our Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book, with a breakdown of all the identity theft, fraud, and other reports the FTC received in 2020. We’ll have more information for you then. In the meantime, we hope you’ll join us for Identity Theft Awareness Week to learn more about identity theft during the COVID-19 emergency.

For nuts-and-bolts tips on keeping your business’s information secure, check out Cybersecurity for Small Business. And, review our guidance, Businesses Must Provide Victims and Law Enforcement with Transaction Records Relating to Identity Theft, to know your compliance responsibilities — and how to help — if someone working to reclaim their good name after identity theft asks for transaction records from you.

IF YOU ARE OR SUSPECT THAT YOU ARE THE VICTIM OF IDENTITY THEFT

VISIT THE FTC WEBSITE HERE: Identity Theft Recovery Steps | IdentityTheft.gov

TAGS: SCARS, Identity Theft, ID Theft Victims, FTC, Reporting Identity Theft, Identity Theft Victims, Scam Victims, Online Fraud, Online Crime Is Real Crime, Scam Avoidance

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SCARS the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Incorporated

By the SCARS™ Editorial Team
Society of Citizens Against Relationship ScamsSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Inc.

A Worldwide Crime Victims Assistance & Crime Prevention Nonprofit Organization Headquartered In Miami Florida USA & Monterrey NL Mexico, with Partners In More Than 60 Countries
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SCARS the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Incorporated

By the SCARS™ Editorial Team
Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.

A Worldwide Crime Victims Assistance & Crime Prevention Nonprofit Organization Headquartered In Miami Florida USA & Monterrey NL Mexico, with Partners In More Than 60 Countries
To Learn More, Volunteer, or Donate Visit: www.AgainstScams.org
Contact Us: Contact@AgainstScams.org

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