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Identity Theft - America's Fastest Growing Crime [Camden, TN]

Identity theft is now America’s fastest-growing crime and “can’t be stopped!” says Cliffene Moore, of Camden, an independent representative for Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc., a company that works with victims of such crimes. “Anyone with a checking account and/or credit cards is at risk.”

Just like the fashions and fads, this out-of-control problem is mainly in the larger cities but is trickling down to the rural areas like Camden and Benton County. “Everywhere I go I hear, ‘Oh, that happened to my sister-in-law or, my cousin had a big problem with that just last year.”

Internet users are especially vulnerable to these crimes. Anyone shopping online services such as eBay, for instance, puts a lot of information out there for dishonest onlookers, worldwide.

And, it’s not far from home.

“It almost happened to me just before Christmas,” says Cathe Patton, Secretary for US Conservation Services. “I had been shopping on eBay the week before, when I was checking my email and there was an email from (what appeared to be) eBay saying they needed to update my account and started asking for all kinds of information. Since I had already purchased all I was going to for a while, I ignored it. A couple of weeks later, it popped up again. It never occurred to me that it was fraudulent; it had the eBay logo and everything. The next time I was looking at something on eBay, I clicked on questions, and asked about it.

Here is what eBay replied: “We advise you to be very cautious of email messages that ask you to submit information such as your credit card number or your email password. eBay will never ask you for sensitive personal information such as passwords, bank account or credit card numbers, Personal Identification Numbers (PINs), or Social Security numbers in an email itself. If you ever need to provide information to eBay please open a new Web browser, type www.ebay.com, and click on the "site map" link located at the top the page to access the eBay page you need.

“If you have any doubt about whether an email message is from eBay, please forward it immediately to spoof@ebay.com and do not respond to it or click on any of the links in the email message. Please do not change the subject line or forward the email as an attachment.”

[FULL STORY]

Category: Identity Theft News
Posted on February 27, 2004 at 04:06 PM | Permalink

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