Identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in the country, and often little more than a name or Social Security Number (SSN) is needed to steal someone's identity. During 2020, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received nearly 1.4 million reports of identity thefts, up from 651,000 from the previous year.
You might be surprised to learn how many of your daily activities expose you to this crime.
If so, you could potentially become a victim of identity theft.
These actions place you at risk of being a victim of identity theft because each requires you to share personal information with others. This same personal information can be used by identity thieves to commit fraud. You can minimize your risk of being a victim of identity theft by managing your personal information properly.
There are many ways criminals can get your personal information. They can:
There are signs that you can watch for that might indicate that you have become a victim of identity theft. Most importantly, you should monitor the balances of your financial accounts. Check for unexplained charges or withdrawals. Other signs can be:
If you are a victim of identity theft: