Identity Theft


Identity Theft

And so it escalates - Beware.....

LexisNexis Uncovers More Consumer Data Breaches

1 hour, 59 minutes ago
By Bill Rigby and Theo Kolker

NEW YORK/AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Data broker LexisNexis said on Tuesday that personal information on 310,000 U.S. citizens may have been stolen from its computer systems, 10 times more than its initial estimate last month.


An investigation by LexisNexis -- owned by Anglo-Dutch publisher Reed Elsevier -- determined that its databases had been fraudulently breached 59 times using stolen passwords, leading to the possible theft of personal information such as addresses and Social Security numbers. LexisNexis, which said in March that 32,000 people had been potentially affected by the breaches, will notify an additional 278,000 individuals whose data may have been stolen.

Of the initial group contacted, only 2 percent asked the company to conduct an investigation of their credit records. LexisNexis has found no cases of identity theft, such as using a stolen Social Security number to apply for a fraudulent credit card.

\"We need to write to them and offer the same kind of support and investigation we offered the original 32,000,\" a Reed Elsevier spokeswoman said.

\"Of the original group, it's somewhat encouraging that none of them has suffered identity theft.\"

Law enforcement authorities are assisting the company's investigations, which come as lawmakers in Washington consider tighter regulation of data brokers.


Recent break-ins at LexisNexis and ChoicePoint have heightened concerns about identity theft, a crime that costs U.S. consumers and businesses $50 billion annually, according to government estimates.

ChoicePoint in February announced that identity thieves had gained access to some 145,000 consumer profiles, while Bank of America said that same month that it had lost a shipment containing sensitive details of 1.2 million U.S. government customers.

Reed Elsevier moved to soothe investors' fears by reaffirming its earnings forecasts, saying the financial implications of the breach were expected to be manageable within the context of LexisNexis's overall growth.

Its shares were down more than 1 percent in London and Amsterdam at 1500 GMT.

The breach, uncovered after a billing complaint by a customer at LexisNexis's Seisint unit, led to the discovery of an identity and password that had been misappropriated.

The information accessed included names, addresses, Social Security numbers and driver's license numbers, but not credit histories, medical records or financial information, LexisNexis said.

Data-collection services provided by Seisint, based in Boca Raton, Florida, allow police and financial firms to sift through vast amounts of personal information -- from the color of someone's eyes to the type of car they drive.

One Seisint database called the Matrix, which allows state law enforcers to quickly zero in on criminal suspects, has come under criticism from civil-liberties groups.

LexisNexis bought Seisint in July 2004 for $745 million.



Senior Member
Re: Identity Theft

Yep. Been reading about this one. Check your bank, credit card and other financial records regularly. Most banks have the capacity to check your records daily on line. Identity theft has ruined lots of folks financially.



Re: Identity Theft

hey! i wish someone would steal my identity.... i got a student loan back in the early 80's and they acctually dispused that loan to an un accredited school,hell was only 18-22 i knew it all... or so it seemed ... i was fresh out of the marine corps , and couldent find a job so i enrolled in this usa truck driving school ... yeah i know... but at the time it was all the hope that i had , they promised me the moon but in reality ,all i got when i graduated was doors shut in my faceevery company that i applied wih wanted to retrain me , i did end up with one but only for a few months.. i found out later that the school had no accredition and the all knowing student loan program dispused the loan anyway, well scince i couldent make it on my very expensive " ha!!" education, i was haveing trouble paying the loan back, well i offered them ( the student loan people 50.00 a month , i thought that was pretty good at the time it was the 80's and i was working as a fast food asst manager, well that was not good enough for them, too make a long storey short they ruined my credit or i did by getting the stupid loan in the first place... they have managed to take a 3,500.00 dollar loan and turn it into 11, 000.00 , as of last year and i guess that my tax refunds that they are keeping and the wages that they have been garnishing for the last two years ,are not adding up to much? (they have been keeping my refunds for oh at least 12 years). so yeah! please steal my identity the joke will be on the theif.... and as a matter of fact.... i go out of my way to encourage anyone concidering that path to work 2 0r 3 jobs as opposed to getting a loan(shark) for the govt. it' s a f**King lie ..... yes im a little bit bitter . i wanted to sue them for gross negligence on the premisis that they broke their own rules ... giving a loan to an un accrediteed school , but i can't find a lawer that is willing to go up aginst the gov.. i dont blame them . it would be career suiside....


Re: Identity Theft

It's not just us adults that need to be careful :huh: apparently, they can use our kids too...

Signs Can Indicate Whether a Child Has Been Victimized

Clark Howard, Consumer Advisor

POSTED: 5:16 pm EST March 8, 2004
UPDATED: 8:45 am EST March 9, 2004

ATLANTA -- Identity theft is a growing crime in Georgia and the nation, and experts say children are at risk of being victimized, too.

One local infant can attest to that.

Meet Wyatt McVay

When parent Trina McVay went to the bank to open a savings account that would serve as a nest egg for her newborn son, Wyatt, she was surprised by what she was told.

\"They asked for his Social Security Number,\" she recalled. \"But there was activity on his number and he was coming up as being fraudulent.\"

She said she was told that the boy, who was just 2 months old at the time, already had black marks on his credit record for allegedly writing bad checks.

\"I was stunned,\" she said. \"I was shocked.\"

Investigators say children are the latest targets of identity thieves. More than 500,000 youngsters have been victimized by the crime, according to statistics from the Federal Trade Commission.
Betsy Broder, a spokeswoman for the FTC, said the agency is alarmed by the growing crime.

\"We're concerned about identity theft against children, infants (or) anyone,\" she said. \"No one is immune from this serious crime.\"

She said children routinely receive Social Security Numbers at birth after parents give the information so that numbers can be assigned.

\"If you provide that information in a doctor's office or in the dentist's office, someone could have access to it and misuse it,\" Broder said. \"There could be vulnerability in a school.\"

Experts say the crime can go undetected for years. Michelle Thibodeaux's son, James, did not learn that he had been victimized by someone who stole his identity until he tried to obtain a driver's license.
\"They told us he couldn't get his learner's permit because he had already had a license,\" she recalled.

The news for the family got worse. The teen received a letter from the state Department of Revenue saying he owed $5,000 in back child support.

\"He was 16 years old at the time and they claimed he was the father of a 12-year-old boy,\" Thibodeaux said, adding that the unknown thief used her son's name for over 10 years.

The family spent a lot of time trying to repair the damage.

\"We had to change (James') Social Security Number and start over again,\" she said.

Experts say there are warning signs to look for to determine if a child's identity has been stolen, including the receipt of pre-approved credit offers addressed to the child or telemarketing calls in which the caller asks for the child by name.

If that happens, parents should immediately request a copy of the child's credit report from the major credit bureaus. A report should not exist unless someone has stolen the child's identity and is using it.


Re: Identity Theft

Incredible...Thanks for the post KiraSjon. My 10 yo daughter recently was receiving telemarketing calls at our home phone number. I'll have to investigate.