OT: The No. 1 State for Identity Theft

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JLH, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. JLH

    JLH New Member

    The No. 1 State for Identity Theft

    The No. 1 state for identity theft is Arizona, where one in six adults has had his or her identity stolen in the past five years.

    Why? Blame it on two things, according to Javelin Strategy and Research, a private research firm that conducted the study:

    (1) A large number of methamphetamine users in the state.

    (2) A decision by local governments to post public records on the Internet.

    This is how bad it is in Arizona: Identity theft there is double the national average. And it's being fueled by meth addicts. James Van Dyke, president of Javelin, calls it a "supply-chain effect." Van Dyke told ABC News reporter Leslie Yeransian, "Meth users will take your bills in the mail and sell your bank statements as a form of payment. Then the [meth-]maker will use those bank statements to go into an existing account or make a new account off that information or sell your statements to an identity theft specialist."

    The police admit that methamphetamine use and identity theft are a tightly linked problem. "Every time we find a meth lab, we also find identity theft," Detective Tony Morales of the Phoenix Police Department told ABC News. "These meth freaks like to hang together, and they learn about identity theft tricks together."

    How are the meth addicts getting such sensitive data? They aren't just stealing it out of Dumpsters or your mailbox. Often, they are getting it from the government--with a click of a mouse on the Internet. That's especially true in Arizona where counties put very private information on very public Web sites for the convenience of county employees. Two treasure troves for ID criminals are divorce decrees and tax liens.

    Still, Van Dyke says the greatest risk to innocent people is the old-fashioned paper trail. "They should be more worried about documents going through the mail. We found in our research that only 9 percent of identity theft can be traced to Internet use and billing," he told ABC News. "If you follow normal precautions on the Internet you are actually better off than using mail."

    Top five states for identity theft:
    1. Arizona
    2. Nevada
    3. California
    4. Texas
    5. Colorado

    Who is most likely to be the victim of ID theft? Hispanics and African Americans ages 25 to 34.

    What can you do to protect yourself?

    • Turn your paper trail off.
    • Monitor your accounts at least twice a week.
    • Get a free credit report from each of the three credit bureaus.

  2. hugs4evry1

    hugs4evry1 New Member

    I really love it when you're on a research roll!!


    Nancy B
  3. JLH

    JLH New Member

    I thought I would fill our minds with something that wasn't medical related!!!!!

    Hope you are having a good weekend!!

  4. Lolalee

    Lolalee New Member

    jlh, you're just full of good news LOL...sorry couldn't resist it...just giving you a hard time...all in fun.

    Really, these cautions are good to know and helpful. I especially agree with the advice you gave on scams and giving your credit card number.

    Thanks for keeping us safe!!

  5. JLH

    JLH New Member

    I wonder if Arizona is the #1 state for idenity theft, as well as car theft, because so many elderly people go to Arizona to retire "for their health?"!!!!

    You're definitely right about living close to the border. I imagine once they are across it, there would never be any hope of getting a car back!

    Stay safe!

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