Identity theft is the use of your identifying information—name, address, Social Security number, bank account number, credit card numbers, etc—without your knowledge or consent to commit fraud or other crimes. Identity theft can be a stand-alone scam or part of other scams.
Start with the Money Matters article Reduce Your Risk of Identity Theft which shares the basics of what you need to know and provides links to other excellent resources.
These articles from the Consumer Information section of FTC's ID Theft website describe ID theft and what you can do to prevent it, recover from it, and protect your personal information.
- Deter, Detect, Defend: Avoid ID Theft—This fact sheet describes how ID theft occurs, how you can tell if you're a victim, managing your personal information, how to be protective of your social security number, and what to do if your identity's been stolen.
- Take Charge: Fighting Back Against Identity Theft—This fact sheet describes ways to minimize your risk and provides detailed steps on what to do if you're a victim.
- Privacy: Tips for Protecting Your Personal Information—Use these tips to wisely manage your personal information and prevent its misuse.
Identity Theft & Data Breaches Resources from the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse include fact sheets, IQ ("Identity Quotient") quizzes, and alerts.
Identity Theft Resource Center has a variety of resources for victims of identity theft and those who are working on prevention. It also includes a section on workplace ID theft.
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