Articles Posted in Identity Theft

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It is good when the untold stories are told – when people can see what is really going on with real people. This Newsday.com article tells about ordinary people who are being hounded – haunted as the article puts it – by debt collectors and junk debt buyers. Often the accounts (“zombie debt“) that these abusive agencies are trying to collect are well beyond the time limit to ever sue or they were long ago discharged in bankruptcy or they were created by identity theft.

The author of the article, Richard J. Dalton, Jr.,, notes that

Mullen, 46, says she doesn’t remember the debt and has challenged it. Others who have received such notices say the purported old debts are a result of identity theft.

Many credit card companies have started selling delinquent accounts to collectors to boost quarterly earnings, according to a report by Kaulkin Ginsberg, a Rockville, Md.-based adviser on debt collection.

The collectors then resell some of that debt to other collection agencies, accounting for $100 billion in credit card debt sold annually, according to the March 2006 report.

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This opinion from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the arguments of Equifax in this six figure verdict except on two grounds. The emotional distress damages were reduced to $150,000 and the trial court was instructed to conduct a hearing on the attorney’s fee award.

A good analysis of the impact of identity theft is provided by Denise Richardson in her fine blog post. We recommend this to your reading. She also has a link to the opinion so you can read it yourself.

While we disagree with the reduction of the emotional distress damages, overall this opinion benefits consumers and for that we are thankful.

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As you know, Identity Theft is a major problem for Alabama consumers and we are always on the lookout for good advice to reduce the risk. Today the Wall Street Journal has a book excerpt that offers some excellent advice.

We suggest you read this fine article and see if your defenses have any weaknesses that you can shore up. Remember, if you are a victim of ID theft, there are options to receive compensation for the damages you have suffered.

Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.

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Denise Richardson has an excellent blog on credit issues and she picked up this story of how an ID theft ring was targeting celebrities such as Whitney Houston, Paris Hilton, Jennifer Lopez, and others. As we have discussed in the past, ID theft can strike anyone – old, young, ordinary, and now apparently even the famous….

If you have been the victim of Identity Theft keep in mind that you may have options for receiving compensation for your damages.

Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.

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This story is both funny and sad. A man received 2000 credit cards from Exxon with his name and account number on them. If you read this story from the always excellent Consumerist, make sure and read the comments. There is one about someone being billed $1.07 (with the threat of a late charge) and sending the gas company 107 checks for a penny each.

Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.

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Alabama consumers need to be wary of protecting themselves from thieves who can strike any where at any time. We were recently reminded about how important this is when Birmingham News reporter, John Archibald reported on a story that happened to him under the caption, “They Stole from Me, And I’m Furious

If you ever have your wallet, purse or anything that contains your personal information stolen, there are several things you should do immediately in order to protect yourself. Most of these are common sense, but are well worth repeating. These include:

– filing a report with the police;

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Alabama’s elderly consumers need to be aware that they, like others, are being targeted by identity thieves. We recently ran across this newspaper article headlined “Senior Citizens Often Targeted by Identity Theft Scams” by reporter Rebecca Blanton reminding us of this fact.

Maj. Gary Goodson of the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office reminds us in the article, “If you haven’t solicited someone for information and you’ve received something anonymously or unsolicited, then 99 percent of the time it’s going to be a scam or a fraud. If you have to pay anything to get something free, it’s definitely going to be a scam.”

Be on the look out for people pretending to be from your bank or from some government entity wanting to either confirm your information or stating that there is a problem with your account or your information and that they need you to provide information in order to protect yourself or correct the problem.

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The FTC website has details about the reimbursement of expenses suffered by people who became identity theft victims because of the wrongdoing of ChoicePoint.

Here is an excerpt:

Last year, ChoicePoint, a company that compiles and sells personal information, announced that it had sold information about many consumers to people who turned out to be identity thieves. The FTC, the nation’s consumer protection agency, investigated the ChoicePoint security breach and alleged that, in some cases, these sales resulted in identity theft. The FTC and ChoicePoint reached a settlement requiring the company, among other things, to pay $5 million to be used to reimburse consumers for expenses due to identity theft caused by ChoicePoint’s security breach.

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There was a story reporting the apparently first college course on identity theft. Young people of all ages can be victims of identity theft and need to protect themselves. I suppose that when you get a college course, it shows how prevalent this problem is in America.

Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.

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USA Today has an important story related to the struggles a member of our military has had with identity theft. Rather than quote any of it, please read the entire story here. This story reminds us of the danger of identity theft and some of the things we can do to help correct it when it happens.

Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.

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