Identity Theft

The Internet is growing at a rapid pace. As technology advances, to make our lives better, cyber criminals are also learning how to use the same technology to make our lives miserable. One of the biggest threats to Internet users today is identity theft. It is one of the major problems we face today.

Previously, I've worked as a volunteer for a non-profit organization called Wiredsafety. It is a great website because it provides resources on Internet safety for parents, children, teachers, school administrators and law enforcement. I joined up as a volunteer during my graduate studies to get a hands on approach to working with different types of cybercrime cases. Most of the casework I received were ID theft. Why was ID theft the majority of my cases? The answer is simple, money. ID theft not only cause victims misery but it cost them money as well. In 2011, Sony suffered a major breach in their Playstation network when hackers attacked their database and obtained credit card and debit card numbers from their users. This affected users all over the world including the United States. Anyone who had an account on the Sony Playstation Network were affected. Unfortunately, I also saw the results of this first hand as my own account was affected as well. Luckily, I contacted my credit card company right away and reported it to the police. After this mishap, I had to cancel the account all together because of the security breach. This is one of many examples as to why ID Theft is a major problem. Cyber criminals can use a stolen credit card number and then sell them for cash.

It is important to follow the steps suggested by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).  I have also written an article previously on cyber safety tips on Squidoo.