%#@***## Identity Thieves

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Wolfpack
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%#@***## Identity Thieves

Post by Wolfpack » Sat Apr 01, 2006 12:20 pm

WinstonCup, I obviously bagged your topic title, but took the liberty of assuming you wouldn't mind. Talkin' about thievery...

We just discovered that checks we had put out in the mail box to pay some bills were stolen, altered by the thieves, and passed at local stores. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER place outgoing mail in unsecured mail boxes. It's one of those, "I never thought it would happen to me" deals. Well, it did.

We have had to close mutiple accounts, open new ones, order new checks, place fraud alerts with the credit rating bureaus, file a report with the local sheriff, file a report with the local postmaster, and now watch like a hawk all of our accounts to assure that they haven't been hijacked, or for new ones that have been opened in our name.

Here's a great link from the Riverside County Sheriff's Office with tips: http://www.riversidesheriff.org/crime/idtheft.htm

Our bank, Bank of America, was very cooperative in handling the mess. Once the stolen checks had cleared they were able to compare signatures on the forged ones with ours on file and immediately credited our accounts for the stolen amounts.

The officer that took the report said that this is commonplace, usually by tweekers, and the very day he took our report, he had two more to go take. This is the tweekers "job." This is how they feed and clothe themselves. One recent arrest he told us about had four trash bags full of stolen mail at the perp's house.

Live and learn, huh? :evil:
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Post by Washroad » Sat Apr 01, 2006 2:36 pm

I've been a victim of identity theft.

They managed to get info when my wife used her debit card. Over a weekend somebody bought $6,000 worth of diamonds in Bangkok with our account!!! :evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:

Bank of America was very helpful getting it straightened out but it did take over 2 months before all was cleared up.

Check your account frequently, especially on line.

We had our limits on our debit cards reduced; they used to allow us to get $500 cash a day and buy up to $3500 more per day. Now, they only let us use up to $200 per day per card. We use credit cards more often now and just pay them off every month because it's safer.
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Post by spectr17 » Sat Apr 01, 2006 5:52 pm

Get a good secure heavy duty locking mailbox.

Never drop mail off that will sit in a mailbox overnight, go inside.

Put a video camera on your front porch, it really discourages the thieves and doorknob shakers during the day when you're not home.

Shred everything you get in mail that has an application or your info on it.

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Post by quad1100 » Sat Apr 01, 2006 11:01 pm

I saw a news report a while back about that. They said if you use a felt tip type pin they can't do much with the checks. But if you use the ball point pens they can.

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Post by Sloppyduner » Sat Apr 01, 2006 11:40 pm

It sucks when people steel checks and use your credit card. BOTH have happen to me so I KNOW what you gotta go through to C.Y.A. after it happens. BUT I wouldn't call it "Identity Theft"? I'd call someone getting your SS#, posing as you to get new credit cards, loans, and a new car "Identity theft" I sympathize with anybody that has anything wrong done to them. But using scare terms kinda gets under my skin.
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Post by FunRunner » Sun Apr 02, 2006 5:57 am

It's almost ridiculous, how easy it is for the perps to successfully take a persons info and use it, and how shabby the checks can be, and still get cashed....not even close to the originals and sigs don't matter; they don't ck them electronically. One copied ck that was cashed was actually signed "phone." We're worried about our borders and checking people who come into this country. There has to be a way to thwart ID thieves, or at least make it much more difficult for them to operate. I think a good place to start, would be to eliminate checks, as we know them.
The real problems is, who can you trust? if you have all these secret codes, etc., somebody who has access to them, can pass the info on. The right to privacy, when hiring is another stumbling block to successfully thwarting identity theft.
Does anybody else have a problem with profiling being outlawed?

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Post by jhitesma » Sun Apr 02, 2006 12:42 pm

Amy just applied for a new CC a month or two ago and got a letter back from them that info on her credit report did not match and they needed to verify her identity before they'd approve the card. So she did the free credit report thing and found that 2 of the agencies had correct info...but the third had her name listed as an AKA with an Amy Scheuster listed as the real name. That one also had almost 30 additional accounts on it including several mortgages!

The good news was the accounts were all in good standing and she had a great credit score as a result. Only problem is they weren't hers.

She tried to get it fixed and becuase her name wasn't the main name they gave her a HUGE run-around. She put an alert on her account through one of the other agencies (which propagates to all three) and then things got worse...because as a result the took the info from the one that was messed up and used it for the two that work OK. So suddenly her name was off all three!

Thankfully the one that had it wrong in the first place finally got the certified letter she sent with a notarized copy of her birth certificate, drivers license, and a few other things they wanted....and they then fixed her info - sent it to the others - and sent her a new free report to make sure it was all up to date.

Honestly I think it was just a mixup at the credit bureau and not anything malicious. Espically since it was only at one bureau and the other account was in very good standing. But you never know and there's been a LOT of mail theft in Yuma lately.


BTW - think tearing up those card applications you get in the mail is good enough? Think again:

http://www.cockeyed.com/citizen/creditc ... tion.shtml

(That's a great site for some laughs usually, but sometimes he does some important stuff like this.)

There have even been reports of meth houses getting busted and finding bags of shredded documents that they've got the addicts piecing back together to facilitate identity theft. No wonder shredder prices have gone up lately....

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Post by Wolfpack » Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:36 pm

Sloppyduner wrote:...But using scare terms kinda gets under my skin.
Didn't mean to make your skin crawl, Sloppyduner, but I don't know what else to call it. As you suggest, posing would be another way to put it. These people passed two checks of ours at local stores (JC Penney and Albertsons) with ID's that apparently said they were us (there's that posing part). We had two family members checks stolen, mine and my sons (different names). The tellers evidently looked at the ID's of the perp's because they wrote driver license numbers down on each check that was passed. Coincidently, each license number written down are one digit off from each other. Obviously fake ID's. We now have an elevated awareness and concern that there could be something more coming down the road.
FunRunner wrote:It's almost ridiculous, how easy it is for the perps to successfully take a persons info and use it, and how shabby the checks can be, and still get cashed....
I agree FunRunner. We got both checks back and they were absolutely, positively, no doubt altered. They were terrible, but the tellers took'em. I don't get that part. I've never worked in retail, but I would imagine that tellers are trained to spot altered checks. I would think.
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