Fraud is on the rise, with more and more scams coming to light each day, so it is vital that you know how to protect yourself. Whether it’s your personal data or your money, there’s lots you can do to make sure yourself and your family are protected.
Identity theft is one of the most common scams in the UK. It happens when fraudsters access enough information about someone’s identity (such as their name, date of birth, current or previous addresses) to commit identity fraud. Identity theft can take place whether the fraud victim is alive or deceased.
Stealing an individual’s identity details does not, on its own, constitute identity fraud.
But using that identity for any of the following activities does:
- Open bank accounts.
- Obtain credit cards, loans and state benefits.
- Order goods in your name.
- Take over your existing accounts.
- Take out mobile phone contracts.
- Obtain genuine documents such as passports and driving licences in your name.
The first you know of it may be when you receive bills or invoices for things you haven’t ordered, or when you receive letters from debt collectors for debts that aren’t yours.
If you’re a victim of identity theft, it can lead to fraud that can have a direct impact on your personal finances and could also make it difficult for you to obtain loans, credit cards or a mortgage until the matter is resolved.
Remember, your bank will never: