Thursday, November 21, 2019

Identity Theft Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words

Identity Theft - Essay Example It has become necessary for people to be adequately educated about the risks involved and the necessary preventive measures. Identity theft is a crime in which an imposter tries to pretend to be someone else by means of using some key identification data of the victim. This may include social security numbers, credit card numbers etc. When communicating online it becomes even easier to appear to be someone else since the communication is not face to face but online and the distance between the two persons or parties gives advantage to the criminal. The crime may be committed to seek monetary or social or any other form of benefit. Recovery from an identity theft may be easier in certain cases of small thefts involving individuals but it may become very grave if reputed organizations are victimized and they end up spending large sums in repairing the damage caused to their goodwill (World Privacy Forum, 2012). The crime is very diversified and innovated in the present day. The old-fas hioned methods of rummaging through the rubbish bins or picking pockets have been replaced by software, viruses and programming scripts. Computer viruses have proved to be efficient ways of committing identity theft in which all possible identity material of any person or organization may be extracted and put to use in another part of the world and the victim remains oblivious to such activities. Identity theft may range from simply posing to be someone else to more lethal actions such as financial identity theft, child identity theft, medical identity theft to seek medical care or drugs while pretending to be someone else or identity cloning in which the criminal assumes the complete identity of a victim in daily life (Compton, 2012). The identity thieves operating online usually work by tricking you into providing your personal information to them through various methods such as phishing, luring with job opportunities, money scams or fake fraud alerts. Phishing involves an email s ent to a victim which redirects him to a fake website where you are required to fill up a signup form with your personal information. Similarly job opportunity forms are sent and personal information is extracted. Fake fraud alert emails are sent which seem to be legitimate mail from the victim's bank. The victim is informed that someone has tried to fraudulently access his account so he must send certain personal information for verification (Federal Trade Commission, 2006) Today the society is very susceptible to falling for such tricks of criminals since the spoofed websites developed by criminals are so similar to the original ones that an average person cannot identify and differentiate between the real and fake. A simple change of address form may be filled up by someone and the utility bills of the victim will end up somewhere else resulting in nonpayment of a charge and a bad credit report. Furthermore, the personal data commonly available on social networking websites may b e used by criminals to communicate with a victim's contacts and seek financial benefits while pretending to be him. An ATM or a credit/debit card may be duplicated and money drawn from a victim's account. Thus it is clear that every individual and organization must educate itself and others about the seriousness of the implications this crime can have. To address the crimes of identity theft, all countries and states

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