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Celebrities Targeted By Identity Thieves (DOC)

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					Title:
Celebrities Targeted By Identity Thieves

Word Count:
506

Summary:
While the intense scrutiny of famous individuals may seem glamorous,
there are still everyday dangers that they face in life – including the
theft of their identity. Actually, being in the public eye places
celebrities at more risk for becoming a victim of identity theft that
affects athletes, musicians, actors, actresses, and even politicians.
Whether you are the high-flying Michael Jordan or the talkative Oprah
Winfrey, celebrity identity theft is a reality.

When it come...


Keywords:
identity theft, identity theft protection,id theft,credit freeze


Article Body:
While the intense scrutiny of famous individuals may seem glamorous,
there are still everyday dangers that they face in life – including the
theft of their identity. Actually, being in the public eye places
celebrities at more risk for becoming a victim of identity theft that
affects athletes, musicians, actors, actresses, and even politicians.
Whether you are the high-flying Michael Jordan or the talkative Oprah
Winfrey, celebrity identity theft is a reality.

When it comes to celebrity identity theft, there are many different ways
a thieve gains entrance into the private life of famous individuals.
While some steal credit card numbers, others simply hack into cell
phones, as seen in the case of Paris Hilton.

Some identity thieves are notorious for finding clever ways on how to
manipulate the system in order to create havoc. A recently discovered
identity theft ring in the Northeastern Philadelphia used the postal
service to illegally reroute celebrity mail by using a change of address
form that involved a target list including Jennifer Lopez, Michael Vick,
Whitney Houston, Paris Hilton, and Patti LaBelle. It is also believed
that one suspect used their ties with the Internal Revenue Service to
gain personal information.

It is also not uncommon to see a criminal misuse or steal multiple
identities of celebrities at one time, as seen in the case of Abraham
Abdallah, who infiltrated the privacy of countless celebrities. Using the
Internet to retrieve important details on the likes of Oprah Winfrey,
George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, Abdallah is thought to have attempted
to steal $22 million, as he opened mailboxes in various names to aid in
his criminal activity. Using a copy of the Forbes top 400 list of
wealthiest individuals, he easily chose who he would target. When
arrested, he had notations spanning the Social Security numbers, home
addresses, and birth dates of various company executives, celebrities,
and wealthy tycoons. In his possession, he had accumulated more than 400
stolen credit card numbers.

Some of the tools and resources that identity thieves use to steal from
others are easily accessible. Abdallah was able to manipulate various
companies, such as the credit reporting Equifax, which he used to obtain
detailed credit reports. He used library computers, cell phones with
Internet access, virtual voicemail, and courier services to target
celebrities. Once enough information was gathered in order to pose as
celebrities, he was able to collect credit card numbers and important
financial records.

While celebrities are often targeted in regards to identity theft, those
caught in the act are severely punished. The man who stole the identity
of Tiger Woods was convicted and sentenced under the "three strikes" law
in California, where he was given 200 years in prison. As for Abdallah,
he was charged with criminal impersonation, forgery, and fra ud with a
bail set at $1 million.

Be Alert for Your Own Self & Loved Ones, too!

Take steps to safeguard your private, personal and financial information,
as well as that of your loved ones. Help by alerting others to this info
and share tips with them for their safety.

				
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posted:3/10/2011
language:English
pages:2