Identity Fraud and Paper Shredders
ABT Office Supplies Ltd Suppliers to the UK
What is identity theft?
Learn what ID fraud actually is
Criminals steal your personal details and use them to
open bank accounts, get credit cards, take out loans, claim
state benefits, even to get a mortgage and obtain documents
such as passports and driving licences in your name. You
may be liable for whatever actions they take; this can ruin
your credit rating and seriously damage your reputation.
Identity theft is one of the fastest growing types of
fraud in Europe. Bin Raiding, fraudsters rummaging through
your rubbish, is the main source of information for identity
fraudsters. Many victims of identity fraud do not discover
their identity has been stolen until over a year later.
Identity fraudsters are able to obtain your information
in a number of different ways. Being aware of how thieves
gather your personal information can help you to protect
- Bin Raiding: Rummaging through your rubbish.
- Stealing personal items from your home e.g. passports.
- Stealing your personal mail, ie: bank statements
and credit card information.
- Computer hacking.
- Completing a change or address form to redirect
your post to a different address.
Your identity is precious, let's protect it.
- In 2005 there were more than 100,000 victims
of ID fraud in the UK.
- ID Fraud is the UK's fastest growing
white collar crime.
- ID Fraud costs the UK £1.7bn per year.
- It takes the average victim over 300 hours
of stress and worry to put their records straight after
their identity has been stolen.
- In 2005 it was estimated that card related identity
fraud cost the UK economy £439m.
- 41% of PC users don't have an active
firewall (source APACS).
Be on the look out
You may have become a victim of identity
- You have lost or had stolen any important documents
such as passports of driving licence.
- Post you are expecting has failed to turn up
or if you are receiving no post at all.
- Items have appeared on your bank statements
that you do not recognise.
- You applied for a state benefit to be tNEW that
you are already claiming.
- You receive bills, invoices or receipts for
goods and services that are addressed but that you
have not asked for.
- You have been refused a financial service, such
as a credit card or loan, despite having a good
- A mobile phone contract has been set up in your
name without your knowledge.
- You have received letters from solicitors or
debt collectors for debts that aren't yours.
What can be done to protect yourself.
- Never disclose your credit, charge or cash card
PIN number to anyone.
- Never respond to anyone for a request from a
supposed Bank or other authority requesting confirmation
of your PIN, your personal information or the security
code. Your bank or the police will never ask you
to disclose your PIN.
- Make sure your computer has an up to date anti
virus software and firewall installed.
- Keep all your personal documents in a safe place,
preferably in a lockable drawer.
- Check statements as soon as they arrive. Contact
your bank if there are any transactions that you
do not recognise.
- Most importantly, never casually
throw away documents such as bills, bank statements,
receipts or any unwanted post in your name. Always
shred unwanted documents using a Paper
DON'T BIN IT SHRED IT!
already a victim?
What to do it you think you are a victim
- Act quickly to make sure that
you are not liable for financial losses caused by
criminals using your identity.
- Report lost or stolen documents,
such as passports, driving licences, credit cards
and cheque books to the organisation that issued
- Consider contacting the CIFAS
the UK's Fraud Prevention Service - to apply for
protective registration if you believe you are a
victim of identity fraud or at risk of becoming
one, once you have registered, CIFAS members will
carry out extra checks whenever anyone, including
you, applies for a financial service using your
address. They do this to make sure that a criminal
is not trying to commit fraud by pretending to be
you. You will have to pay a charge for this service.
- If someone fraudulently opened an account in
your name, contact the company
- Contact your bank or credit-card company
to report suspicious transactions on your statement.
- Get a copy of your personal credit file
and report any suspicious entries. Report the matter
to your local police and ask for a crime reference
How to beat the
ID theft leaflet
Protect yourself against identity theft guide
Secrets and Shredders
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