identity theft

(redirected from Identity fraud)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Financial.
Related to Identity fraud: identity theft

identity theft,

the use of one person's personal information by another to commit fraud or other crimes. The most common forms of identity theft occur when someone obtains another person's social security number, driver's license number, date of birth, and the like and uses it to open a fraudulent bank, credit card, cellular telephone, or other account, or to obtain false loans. Criminal identity theft, the most common nonfinancial type, occurs when someone gives another's personal information to a law enforcement officer when he or she is arrested. In addition to the financial losses resulting from identity theft, the person whose personal information has been used will have an erroneous credit or criminal history that is often expensive and time-consuming to correct. The occurrence of identity theft increased significantly beginning in the late 1990s due to the computerization of records and the ability to use another's personal information anonymously over the Internet.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

identity theft

Stealing the identity of others by using their credit card, drivers license, social security or other personal identification numbers. With "true name" identity theft, the thief uses the information to open new accounts. With "account takeover" identity theft, the thief uses the information to access existing accounts.

Not only can the thieves run up bills for the victims, but they can commit crimes pretending to be the victim, who may have enormous difficulty proving otherwise. Although catalog shopping by telephone has been around for decades, it is possible that an order taker might find someone acting suspicious. However, the complete lack of human interaction on the Web has caused identity theft to increase. In 1998, the U.S. Congress made identity theft a federal offense.
Copyright © 1981-2019 by The Computer Language Company Inc. All Rights reserved. THIS DEFINITION IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. All other reproduction is strictly prohibited without permission from the publisher.
References in periodicals archive ?
The solution adds an additional set of identity fraud detection tools created to detect and prevent this new, rapidly increasing form of fraud.
Analysis of its member data showed that the number of victims of impersonation, or identity fraud, aged under 21 rose by 24% to 3,527 in the first nine months of 2018.
Half of all identity fraud against children is new account
Of the children who learned their information was exposed, 39 percent fell victim to identity fraud. That's considerably higher than the rate for adults at just 19 percent.
The study also found that despite industry efforts to prevent identity fraud, fraudsters successfully adapted to net 1.3 million more victims in 2017, while the amount stolen reached $16.8 billion.
consumers found despite industry efforts to prevent identity fraud, fraudsters effectively altered course to net 1.3 million more victims in 2017, with the amount stolen rising to $16.8 billion.
explains identity fraud and answers the questions, "Why should I care?" and "How much does it cost us?" It reveals the information gold mine that perpetrators already know about and take advantage of.
Index; the Identity Fraud Risk Index; the Occupancy Fraud Risk
Identity fraud is where criminals collect personal details on an individual and then pretend to be that person to try to access credit, such as a loan or mobile phone contract, in their name.
Liam then has to write to the lenders and the county courts to tell them he is the victim of identity fraud - and give his crime reference number.