Synthetic identity theft is a crime that’s growing in popularity, and it’s something you should be aware of. If this sounds like something out of a sci-fi novel, don’t worry—it’s not just a plot device. Synthetic ID theft is one of the fastest-growing forms of identity theft and occurs when a scammer combines real and fake information to create a new identity. The reason why synthetic ID fraud has become so popular with criminals is that it requires less personal information than other types of ID theft; this makes it harder for financial institutions to detect when someone is stealing your info.
Synthetic ID theft is one of the fastest-growing forms of identity theft and occurs when a scammer combines real and fake information to create a new identity.
Synthetic ID theft is one of the fastest-growing forms of identity theft and occurs when a scammer combines real and fake information to create a new identity. It can occur in a variety of ways, like getting a credit card in your name with the same address as yours or even opening up an entirely new bank account in your name using someone else’s social security number.
The reason this type of fraud is so successful is that it’s difficult for banks to spot unless they verify that all of their client’s information matches up perfectly. On top of that, banks may be hesitant to close accounts due to privacy concerns; however, if you suspect your bank account has been compromised by synthetic identity thieves and there is no way you authorized any transactions made on it (e.g., withdrawing money), then you should definitely contact them right away!
Synthetic ID theft requires less personal information than other forms of ID theft.
In synthetic ID theft, the thief doesn’t need to steal your name or Social Security number (SSN). Instead, they use a combination of your SSN and other identifying information—like your birthday and mother’s maiden name—to create a fake credit file for you.
Once the fake credit file is created, it can be used to open new accounts in your name. Then, whenever anyone tries to access those accounts for any reason—whether it’s an insurance company checking on claims history or even just when you make an online purchase from Amazon—they’ll get incorrect information about what’s in your credit report. In turn, they may not notice that there are actually other accounts that have been opened without their knowledge. As long as these false accounts keep being used responsibly (which means not making purchases or taking out loans with them), nobody will realize anything is wrong until it’s too late.
Synthetic ID thieves can steal your identity for years before you find out about it.
You may not find out about it until you apply for a loan or credit card.
You may not find out about it until you try to buy a house.
You may not find out about it until you try to get a job.
It’s much harder to fix synthetic ID fraud than to prevent it in the first place.
The biggest problem with synthetic identity theft is that it’s much harder to fix than it is to prevent. The reason for this, as we’ve already seen, is that you can’t prove who you are when your identity has been stolen. So if someone steals your social security number and uses it to apply for credit cards or loans in your name, how do you prove that the person who did all those things isn’t really ‘you’?
The answer lies in proving who you are by using other documents like birth certificates and driver’s licenses—but these can be faked too! That means the process of proving yourself without a valid birth certificate can be long, time consuming and expensive. You may have to spend years going through judicial proceedings before being compensated for damages caused by synthetic identity fraud; even then there’s no guarantee that any compensation will be forthcoming. In fact, given the nature of this type of crime (which involves stealing personal information from third parties), victims rarely see any restitution from those responsible for their troubles!
You should keep an eye on your credit report to be sure no one has been using your information without your knowledge.
If you’re worried about identity theft, the best thing to do is keep tabs on your credit report. You can get a free copy of your credit report once a year from each of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion). You can also get a free report from AnnualCreditReport.com.
If any unauthorized activity is found on your report, contact one of these agencies immediately so they can investigate further and take steps to block out any fraudulent charges made under your name.
Synthetic ID theft is a new form of identity theft that’s been around since at least 2010, but it’s only recently become more common. This type of fraud hurts people across all demographics and affects every state in the United States. Synthetic ID thieves don’t need as much personal information as other types of fraudsters do, so it’s important to be on guard against this kind of scam!