Sure, most identity thieves are the next generation of pick-pockets but for a great majority of them, they are not standing behind or accidentally but purposely bumping into their victims; they are not typically localized to where their victims are pursued. Surprisingly enough, most Identity Thieves are actually members of terrorists and extremists groups. After all, the money has to go somewhere, so why not towards acts of terrorism. Victims of identity theft tend to feel violated and even shameful that they might have done something foolish on their part to have caused the theft. But, how do you think these victims would feel; or for that matter, how would you feel if your stolen identity was used to support acts of terrorism against America? It is one thing to attempt to convince a collection agency that a debit is not yours but try to convince several federal agencies the same thing, and you might as well begin working on your appeal from prison.
Terrorists tend to be well trained and are willing to commit many forms of violent acts in order to achieve their goals, especially at the cost of innocent Americans. They will gladly empty your bank account in the process. They may work alone or in groups. They may be state-side, or they may be targeting Americans from another country. No thanks to the Internet, but their whereabouts and our whereabouts are virtually at their fingertips. Through a range of tools, including the Internet, terrorists and extremists groups have the ability to be almost undetected; however, with education and awareness, everyone has the tools available to them, not to become another statistic. Furthermore, detecting these signs and sharing the information with other private citizens, and law enforcement agencies provides the best opportunity to prevent a terrorist attack or a fellow American from stealing your identity.
When search financially sensitive websites, whether for banking purposes, or online purchases, I recommend looking at the address bar in your browser. If you see: Http:// then, this is not a secure website, even if the website states that it is. Please do not fall for this hoax. The best thing to do here is to simply add an ‘S‘ to the address: Https:// and this will cause the website to use a secure browser. If you receive error messages of any kind, then this is a sign that the website you are browsing is not secured or encrypted. Also, another precaution is to never use your credit card, debit card, online checking accounts to make purchases, or browse your online banking information even when the website has the Https:// when using either a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connections, or at a public internet cafe like a local library or school library because you may be unaware of how unsecure those connections really are. These days, there seems to be a more likely chance that a major corporation or financial organization will make the evening news because some hackers broken into the main server and stole vital information, rather than targeting someone’s home computer.
Another precaution is to delete your browser cookies whenever possible so that your credit card, debit card, and banking information does not remain accessible should someone else sit down at your computer or hack your internet connection and easily find your stored account numbers. Sure, it is less time consuming to press a couple of key strokes and have your account numbers entered in for you so that you do not need to go and get your card from your wallet and manually enter it in, but … in days past, it was all too common for neighbors to steal cable from another so that they would not need to pay for it themselves. In retrospect, neighbors tend to ‘borrow’ unsecured internet connections so that they can have free internet connections.
However, if you are set on using a software program that stores your account information, along with your names, date of birth, and other everyday ‘fill in fields’ then, I recommend a program like RoboForm, which is inexpensive and has the ability to be password protected. However, it I still recommended to delete your cookies and browser history at least every 30 days if not sooner. Some browser settings like Firefox will allow users to automatically delete cookies and/or browser history every time the browser window is closed.
Funding Sources for Terrorists, at your Expense
- Money Laundering and Smuggling
- Credit Card Fraud (opening accounts and loans in your name and SS#)
- Bank Sources and Funding’s (opening accounts and loans in your name and SS#)
- Mail Fraud (using your name and SS# as an alias)
- Telephone Fraud (cloning your cell phone, or opening accounts in your name and SS#)
- Visas and Passports (using your identity)
- Immigration (using your identity to gain access to the United States)
- Conning you in to purchasing stolen property
Just remember that thieves love the chance for fast credit approval, because haste is the enemy of accuracy. Credit card companies are just as easy to blame. Sure there are still people who sit behind a desk in a bank and manually review credit reports for approvals and denials but with instant credit approvals, even the most sophisticated computer can make mistakes; all the more so if they are costly to the consumer and not the financial institute. Unfortunately, names and date of births are not always matched to social security numbers and addresses for verification. Creditors often claim that they are fine tuning the way that consumers’ personal information are verified before approval, but how do they explain when deceased people are able to cast votes in elections or open new credit cards? I have a grandfather who died in 1979, and even today, he still receives weekly mailings for credit card offers. The law nictitates that applicants must be at least 18-years old to enter into a contract, which includes loans and credit cards, so then how is it that young children are approved for credit cards and loans, when their identity is stolen and put to use. Heck, they can find themselves in-debit before the age of 12, let alone 18 or middle age like many Americans these days. It only takes someone in their 40’s for example, to steal the name and social security number of a toddler, and tweaked the date of birth by several years and APPROVED!
Today, the average criminals figures that if they can steal someone’s identity and use it to open a credit card, take out a signature loan, buy a new vehicle, then why stop there. With vehicle purchases or rental cars, drug suppliers can use the vehicle for drug trafficking; whereas a terrorist can take the vehicle, load it up with explosives, and park it next to a federal building in Oklahoma City, or in Times Square. While law enforcement agencies have the technology to trace the origins of explosive devices, it would be even effortless to trace back to the registration of the vehicle’s owner, which could very well be unsuspecting, YOU!