Identity theft is on the rise everywhere, but Michigan residents should be especially on guard against fraudsters. Last year, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Michigan ranked sixth in the nation for ID theft reports, with 15,684 filed.
So, why are so many Michiganders being targeted for identity theft? Experts believe that it has to do with the fact that there are a lot of immigrants and elderly people living in the state. But literally anyone can be at risk and if this thought scares you, it should.
If someone uses your identity in order to steal money, take out loans, or open accounts in your name, it can wreak havoc with your finances and destroy your credit. And while losing money is bad, dealing with credit damage can be even worse.
A tarnished credit score can make it difficult to get approved for loans, qualify for a good interest rate, or rent an apartment. Bad credit can even cause your car insurance rates to go up because it’s considered a “risk factor.” With this in mind, all Michiganders should take measures to protect their identities and guard their credit.
Why NO ONE is Safe from the Threat of Identity Theft
A lot of ID thieves target senior citizens and immigrants specifically, but you’re never too young to be a victim. There are plenty of reports involving children having their Social Security Numbers stolen. In fact, a recent and heavily publicized cyber-attack proves that college students are most certainly at risk.
Last year, a large data breach occurred at Michigan State University, resulting in 449 records getting compromised. Granted, that’s 449 records out of a database that contains over 400,000. But that’s hardly a consolation for the students and alumni who had their information stolen. If you are currently enrolled at a college or university, how many times have you written your SSN on a form? It’s definitely something to think about.
The Scariest Part: Anyone can be an Identity Thief
A common misconception is that all identity thieves are reclusive, hoody-wearing hackers who troll the web in search of easy prey. So, as long as you only share information with trusted sites and keep an eye on your bank and credit cards, you’re fine, right? Wrong.
Unfortunately, fraudsters can literally be anywhere, and they tend to gravitate toward professions that give them immediate access to sensitive data. In fact, a Michigan Secretary of State Employee was recently arraigned on three separate counts of identity theft. And this person had been at her job for six years. Can you imagine how many times she may have stolen information without getting caught? Clearly, no matter how careful you try to be with your personal info, it’s nearly impossible to keep it 100% safe. Every single day, you’re forced to trust people who might be criminals. Bank tellers, retail employees, postal workers, wait staff members – just to name a few – all have opportunities to steal your data. You should guard your information as carefully as possible and monitor your credit reports regularly. However, if you still end up as victim of ID theft, there is a way to get your credit repaired for free.
Free Credit Repair is Just a Phone Call Away
If your credit has been wrecked by identity theft, the team at Credit Repair Lawyers of America can get you back in good standing. We can have false information removed from your credit reports, and it won’t cost you anything. We’ve been helping consumers since 2008, so you can trust us to get the job done.
Get a free, no obligation consultation today by calling Attorney Gary Nitzkin at (248) 353-2882 or emailing him at [email protected].