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Contact 6: Renters were victims in identity theft case
From: Erica Absetz <erica () riskbasedsecurity com>
Date: Fri, 29 Mar 2013 11:08:12 -0400

http://fox6now.com/2013/03/28/contact-6-renters-were-victims-in-identity-theft-case/

MILWAUKEE (WITI) — Those looking to rent an apartment or home are
required to fill out a lot of forms, and FOX6′s Contact 6 has a
warning about what information is put on those forms.

The victims in a recent identity theft case were renters, who had
filled out a rental application with personal information.

“Somebody who worked for the apartment management complex was able to
obtain copies of their drivers licenses and their applications and
they were given to the defendant,” U.S. Postal Inspector Blanca
Alvaraz said.

The identity thief then went online, and with those dates of birth and
social security numbers applied for student loans.

“They ranged from $25,000 and up,” Alvarez said.

Postal inspectors got involved because the checks were being sent to
vacant addresses.

“The checks would be picked up the defendant who was stealing the
mail,” Alvarez said.

The next step in this fraud was hiring people who, with fake IDs,
would go into banks and cash the student loan checks.

“The total potential loss in this case was over a half million
dollars. The victims in this case had a difficult time fixing their
credit. It`s a lengthy process,” Alvarez said.

“If their identities are stolen, most parents wouldn’t catch that
crime for 10 perhaps 15 years down the road, so an ID thief really
gets a good head start year, after year, after year,” Assistant U.S.
Attorney Marc Anton said.

Contact 6 says to check your credit report at least once a year to
make sure no one has stolen your identity and taken out loans or
credit cards in your name. Additionally, shred any documents
containing personal information.
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