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The most common types of identity theft

Every day there is a new way for someone to steal an identity. As companies find new ways to protect consumers from identity theft, thieves develop new methods to steal the information. It takes constant upkeep and vigilance to protect an identity and ensure that no one is using a name or social security number. What many do not realize is that identity theft is more than that. There are many ways that an identity can be stolen, and there are times when people get involved in it without even realizing they are.

Driver's license fraud

If someone other than you has a driver's license printed with your information on it and uses it when he or she is pulled over, you could end up with traffic tickets that you had no knowledge of on your record. Without knowing, you do not pay the fines, which can also result in a suspension of your license when you are not even aware that you have done something wrong.

Social security fraud

Every American has a unique identification number that is used to get employment, obtain credit when it is needed or to request assistance from the government. If someone has your social security number, he or she may receive welfare payments in your name or open lines of credit that you are responsible for. A social security card can also be used to get a driver's license in your name, open credit cards and even gain employment.

Criminal identity theft

If someone has your name and social security number, and they commit a crime in your name, you could end up with a criminal record with absolutely no involvement. If you have a record from someone else's actions, you could have problems getting employment when a background check is run or even face legal action. Criminal identity theft is one of the most potentially damaging types of identity theft.

Insurance identity theft

Thieves who have your information may also use it to obtain insurance and other benefits. If someone using a stolen identity is in an accident, it may appear on your record. This leads to denial of insurance, legal action and higher premiums.

Medical identity theft

Medical identity theft occurs when someone uses your health insurance to get health care services. This puts the wrong information in your medical file and can leave you responsible for medical bills for treatments you did not need and never received.

Identity theft is common in the United States, but it does not mean that everyone accused is guilty of the act, and some are even unaware that they are involved in the crime. If you or someone you love is facing identity theft charges, you may benefit from having a criminal defense lawyer in your corner.

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