Webster dictionary says identity theft is the illegal use of someone else's personal information (as a Social Security number, credit card number, passport, etc…) in order to obtain money or credit (Webster). Identity theft started long before the internet came along. When identity theft first started thieves would kill their victims then assume their identity. Now day’s identity theft is a lot less dangerous. Identity’s can be stolen very easily by phone conversation, dumpster diving, and phishing just to name a few; however there are many ways to prevent identity theft from occurring, and if it does occur there are many ways to get your life back in order.
The first cases of white collar identity theft started in the early 1990’s over the telephone. Thieves would call unsuspecting people with the prospect of something free, discounted, or something that was just too good to be true. Also thieves would pretend to be some kind of charity organization soliciting funds on behalf of the said organization. The thieves would get the victims name, address, and credit card information. The victims will not be the wiser until they get a bill that had purchases they were unaware of or seen a copy of their credit report to find they had debit they didn’t even know about.
At the same time as thieves are calling potential victims, others are going through potential victims trash looking for mail, pictures, financial statements, receipts, and any thing else that would give them access to financial records or better able to assume their identity for monetary or personal gain. It is still going on even today. I remember about 6 or 7 years ago a person found an old drivers license in the trash. He then used the identity when later arrested for robbing a convenience store and taking the lives the clerk and 2 shoppers. The victim of the identity theft while proving his innocents of the crime...