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Old 07-31-2007, 11:49 PM
 
2,432 posts, read 6,106,917 times
Reputation: 1035

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sherrenee View Post
How many people here have had or no of someone who has had their Identity stolen?

I have a close to home story, because it is my husband.

In 2002 we went to buy a house and were turned down do to a collection from Sprint. Well neither of us had ever had anything with Sprint so we started researching and disputing ASAP. We found out that the account had been set up in Colorado (which we have both always lived in Arkansas). After disputing etc we got it taken off.

At that time we decided to pull a full report on my husband and it was at that time that we found out that someone had applied for over 100 loans/credit cards etc in my husbands name. Thank God we were just starting out and didn't have much credit history.
We had to go through the whole police report, fraud alert, etc stuff.

We also went to the Social Security office, to make sure this person wasn't working under my husbands social (he wasn't), but my husband ended up being given a new Social Security number because of the number of attempts made in such a short period of time. We were told not to use the old SS# for any reason.

We in turn had to get all of his credit that he did have transfered to his new SS#. Not an easy task, but we did get it done.

In 2003 the guy used it again, for Com cast, lucky that one was very easy to prove because Com cast doesn't have service where we live.
Filed another police report, fraud alert etc.

In 2004 the guy was at it again. This time he was able to purchase over $10,000 in jewelry from various stores in Colorado. He wasn't able to open an account on line so he went in person to the stores, with a fake Colorado ID in my husbands name. The companies completely ignored the fraud alerts, which state not to issue credit without contacting us at home and if unable to reach us by mail. They just went ahead and issued credit anyway.

Since we had an idea of where the person was, I called the stores( ie Gordon's, Zales etc) in the Denver area until I found the right one. I was able to talk to the employees who helped this guy. One of the store managers told me that she though something was not right, and tried to get the credit card company to put a hold on the account so they could do more checking but they wouldn't do it. We did finally get all the accounts removed.

We filed a police report with the Denver PD since that is where it happened. Lucky for us we got a good detective that actually cared and worked on it from 2004-current. The detective was able to find out who it was because he used a former address, he is a career criminal, he started to sign his name to one of the credit applications, and he was identified in a photo line up by the store employees and various different stores.

He was finally arrested this year, and released on $250,000 bond (he also had drug charges against him). In our case they offered him a plea bargain of 3 years in prison if he pleads guilty. He did not take it.
So in November we are going to trial and he is looking at up to 15 years in prison because of his previous criminal back ground and the number of counts against him in our case (which is 7 counts).

I'm sorry to here you and your husband are having this type of difficulty. You are unique in the sense that the cops actually pursued the case. Most times they don't, choosing to concentrate their resources on violent crimes instead.

I used to be a corrections officer, don't be surprised if this case is actually settled before it goes to trial. The guy most likely is looking to settle both cases at the same time. In all likelihood the guy will be offered a more favorable deal just before the trial is scheduled to start.
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Old 08-01-2007, 06:29 AM
 
Location: Home is where we park it.
3,098 posts, read 8,351,550 times
Reputation: 3185
Quote:
Can't say I'm not trying, Liz.
Thanks for trying.

Quote:
You are unique in the sense that the cops actually pursued the case. Most times they don't, choosing to concentrate their resources on violent crimes instead.
However, I was told by my bank that their fraud department will also pursue the offender in the legal arena. Liz
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Old 08-01-2007, 04:02 PM
 
777 posts, read 2,465,405 times
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Great posts Sherrenee and Southerlady5464.

I was almost a victom of identity theft two weeks ago for the first time. I have recieved a call from the manager of my local bank. She asked if I wanted to transfer $5,600.00 to the Shinsei bank in Japan. I said no. She said she recieved a suspicious letter with no return address that was post-marked from Uganda. She asked if my wife and I could come down there and we went right over. The letter had a letterhead with mine and my wifes name on it, our bank account number and a copy of my signature. The manager said she would have had to speak to me first before making the transaction so it was not as if she was just going to send the money and we would be out of luck. But we didnt take any chances we closed our account and opened a new one. But it was a real eye opener for us. I'm going to look into that credit freeze I hope it's available in NJ.
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Old 08-01-2007, 10:09 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 32,227,931 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkeye48 View Post
I'm sorry to here you and your husband are having this type of difficulty. You are unique in the sense that the cops actually pursued the case. Most times they don't, choosing to concentrate their resources on violent crimes instead.
In my case, it was in the hands of the FDLE. By law, the FDLE is only allowed to pursue cases over $10k in damages (mine was in the $5k range). Anything under $10k and the decision to pursue is left up to the "actual" victim - the one who is at the loss monetarily - which in my case, was the company who extended credit to this criminal using my identity.

So, since I was not in any way out of pocket, it was the company who was out the money, it was their call. As these companies so often do, they chose not to pursue.

Instead, the company will write off the loss (take a tax deduction...tax payers ultimately pay to cover it...i.e.: ME). The damage to my credit is mine alone to deal with.

We (me & the FDLE) knew EXACTLY who the criminal & accomplises were, we had proof, we had it all.......except the power by law to pursue the case.

What an eye opener.

And by the way, don't ever assume that victims of identity theft were "lax" about their personal information. I have always been highly vigilant about my personal information long before this happened. But your information is out there. In my case, it was an employee at the mortgage company who was going into the database and stealing identities. They then distorted my identity enough to be able to open credit in "a name" - it wasn't even my name (but it was my ss#). Total nighmare.

Blocks and watches on your credit help, but they are not foolproof - the systems rely on humans following the rules of the blocks and watches....plenty of room still for human error.

If these companies do not allow the law to pursue the criminals, they are just out there to continue stealing identities .
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Old 08-02-2007, 07:00 AM
 
Location: Home is where we park it.
3,098 posts, read 8,351,550 times
Reputation: 3185
Quote:
And by the way, don't ever assume that victims of identity theft were "lax" about their personal information. I have always been highly vigilant about my personal information long before this happened. But your information is out there. In my case, it was an employee at the mortgage company who was going into the database and stealing identities.
I have seen just how lax and CALLED them on it.

I have *please check photo ID* on the back of ALL my credit/debit cards and yet MOST people do not bother to turn it over to look at the signature and even if they do, do not ask to see my photo ID.

As they say in the computer business, most of the errors are made in the space between chair and the keyboard. Liz
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Old 08-02-2007, 04:00 PM
 
2,432 posts, read 6,106,917 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southernlady5464 View Post
I have seen just how lax and CALLED them on it.

I have *please check photo ID* on the back of ALL my credit/debit cards and yet MOST people do not bother to turn it over to look at the signature and even if they do, do not ask to see my photo ID.

As they say in the computer business, most of the errors are made in the space between chair and the keyboard. Liz
I put a fraud alert warning on my credit reports years ago and it has made no difference. I've got instant credit numerous times and nobody has even mentioned it.
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Old 08-02-2007, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Home is where we park it.
3,098 posts, read 8,351,550 times
Reputation: 3185
Quote:
I put a fraud alert warning on my credit reports years ago and it has made no difference
It made a difference for about the first 30 days. After that, it was as if it had never existed.

But the *check photo id* is always there and I make people check all the time. If they don't, I stop them and ask them why they didn't. Liz
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Old 08-02-2007, 05:42 PM
 
Location: Jax
8,204 posts, read 32,227,931 times
Reputation: 3397
Quote:
Originally Posted by southernlady5464 View Post
I have seen just how lax and CALLED them on it.

I know you're making the point about businesses and employees being lax, but my phrase that you quoted was about myself - the victim - and other victims - and that no one should assume they are "smarter" and therefore it "won't happen to them" because I was vigilant, long before the crime occurred, and it happened to me......some things are out of our control and identity theft can be one of them .

It still pays to make it more difficult for the criminals, but enough of your information is out there already.
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Old 08-02-2007, 06:36 PM
 
Location: Arkansas
1,230 posts, read 2,841,452 times
Reputation: 1551
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkeye48 View Post
I put a fraud alert warning on my credit reports years ago and it has made no difference. I've got instant credit numerous times and nobody has even mentioned it.

That is the same thing that has gone on with my husbands credit. Not only has he been given instant credit , but so has the guy that stole is identity. With fraud alerts etc on his ss#'s. Sadly more and more people are targets of people they do not know, nor do they know how their idenity was compromised in the first place. We intend to ask the guy that stole me husbands identity, when we go to trial in November.
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Old 08-02-2007, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Arkansas
1,230 posts, read 2,841,452 times
Reputation: 1551
People are amazed at the fact that my husband was given a new ss#. His case was that bad. The ss district manager said that he had never seen anyone with that many attempts in that short of a time period.
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