12 News Defenders: Identity Theft - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

12 News Defenders: Identity Theft

Posted: Updated:
  • More newsMore>>

  • Malaysia asks world to pray for missing plane clue

    Malaysia asks world to pray for missing plane clue

    Saturday, April 19 2014 5:21 AM EDT2014-04-19 09:21:49 GMT
    The search coordination center says an underwater robotic submarine is expected to finish searching a narrowed down area of the Indian Ocean seabed for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane within the next week,...More >>
    A Malaysian official on Saturday asked the world to "pray hard" for a clue to help find Flight 370, while authorities said a robotic submarine was expected to finish searching a patch of the Indian Ocean seabed within a...More >>
  • Health care site flagged in Heartbleed review

    Health care site flagged in Heartbleed review

    Saturday, April 19 2014 2:45 AM EDT2014-04-19 06:45:14 GMT
    People who have accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama's signature health care law are being told to change their passwords following an administration-wide review of the government's...More >>
    People who have accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama's signature health care law are being told to change their passwords following an administration-wide review of the government's...More >>
  • Auburn woman shot during domestic dispute

    Auburn woman shot during domestic dispute

    Saturday, April 19 2014 12:05 AM EDT2014-04-19 04:05:44 GMT
    Auburn police say a man is facing charges for allegedly shooting a woman during a domestic dispute. Johnnie L. Forte, 59, has been charged with second degree domestic violence. Auburn police officersMore >>
    Auburn police say a man is facing charges for allegedly shooting a woman during a domestic dispute.More >>
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

"It's an ongoing thing; they steal your identity.  It destroys your life," says Maria Chen who knows her identity was stolen online.  

The suspect literally took everything. "He had withdrawn all of my money out of the bank and opened up credit cards in my name." Maria's bank alerted her.

When she found out her money was gone and her credit destroyed, she was angry. Maria immediately went to police, who were able to track down the suspect and arrest him. She also put alerts on her accounts. Yet somehow when the suspect got out of jail, he was able to use her personal information again. 

U.S. Postal Inspector Carla Menendez says, "The bad guys are calling in with all the personal identifying information of the victim."  Once they do that, they essentially can get access to your credit card account. They can add themselves as users, get their own card with their name on it and start charging on your account. The vicious cycle starts all over again.

Some advice from postal inspectors: safeguard your personal information at all times.  Menendez adds,"One thing we always recommend is to check your credit once a year to make sure no fraudulent activity has happened."

Also, never carry your social security with you. Leave it at home in a safe place.  The FTC has more tips to protect your identity and what you should do immediately, if you identity is stolen.  You can find that information here.

Powered by WorldNow