As the holiday season is fast approaching, there is typically an upswing of flights, road trips and of course, gift shopping. During the times we are in now, living in a more digital age and with an emphasis on staying safe as we battle through this pandemic, we are sure to see a major turnout in the online shopping realm. This increase in online shopping while very convenient for the consumer, can also pose a potential risk for the consumer concerning identity theft and fraud. Consumers want to be extra cautious especially with the holidays approaching and identity theft on the rise during this time.
Identity theft is a crime where someone obtains your personal information without your permission to commit fraud. This type of theft is normally used to gain financially by taking out credit or loans, filing fraudulent taxes or obtaining free medical care.
The three most common types of identity theft are financial identity theft, social security identity theft and medical identity theft.
Financial identity theft is by far the most common category of identity theft. This occurs when someone uses an unsuspecting person’s information to obtain money, goods or services. A thief can do this in many forms, but the growing space of obtaining someone’s information illegally is through computer technology. Identity thieves will use social media, phishing emails or hacking your computer in order to obtain your information.
The second common type of identity theft is social security identity theft. An identity thieve can obtain your social security number and essentially apply for loans, credit cards, file fraudulent tax claims and much more. This type of identity theft can be of great harm for an individual due to the potential of not being able to file taxes correctly or messing up one’s credit due to substantial unpaid balances.
The third type of identity theft is medical identity theft where your information is used by a thief in order to get free medical care.
It is vital that you protect your information year-round but especially during holiday season where thieves are out in full force to obtain your information.
Should you be a victim of identity theft during this season, you can reach out to a skilled criminal lawyer, like from The Lynch Law Group, to determine what your legal options are and decide what to do next. Contact an attorney before your case escalates outside of your control.