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San Francisco Identity Theft Lawyer

Pet the United States Department of Justice, identity theft refers to a number of different crimes in which individuals wrongfully obtain and use personal information for the purpose of financial gain. There are a number of ways this crime is committed, resulting in vastly different makeup of one case to another. Identity theft can include everything from dumpster diving to wire fraud. If you have been arrested for identity theft, you may be investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Trade Commission, or the fraud division of the Department of Justice.

What personal information can be stolen?

Identity theft is committed when an individual or a group uses another person’s Social Security number, their bank account number, credit card number, or other identifying information in an attempt to commit fraud. For example, an individual can be accused of identity theft after using another person’s credit card information to purchase plane tickets. Individuals can also be accused of committing other crimes under the guise of someone else’s identity. Someone accused of identity theft may also be accused of causing noneconomic damages such as the damage to someone’s reputation. Identity theft has only been a federal offense since 1998.

Types of Identity Fraud

According to 18 United States Code ยง 1028, the penalty for identity theft is 15 years maximum imprisonment, fines, and forfeiture of personal property used to commit the offense.

Listed below are some of the most common types of identity theft and fraud:

  • Dumpster Diving: This type of identity fraud takes place when people go through waste bins in order to find documents with important information (ex: bank statements).
  • Shoulder Surfing: Some individuals are accused of identity theft after snooping or spying on others while they are transmitting their personal information. This might include peering over someone’s shoulder as they input a PIN number or listening to a private call.
  • Mail Fraud: This might involve impersonating a bank or other legitimate business to get a mail recipient to mail back personal information. Another type of mail fraud involves intercepting mail with enclosed pre-approved credit cards in an attempt to activate a card.
  • Spam Emails: While many people have spam filters on their email inboxes, many people can receive emails asking for personal information. These emails are unsolicited. The internet is becoming an increasingly more popular method for committing crimes.
  • Computer Hacking: Hackers can make their way into private networks and systems in order to uncover private information. Personal and business systems can be hacked into.

Contact Okabe & Haushalter

Anyone can report fraud, which is why there is the possibility of false accusations. If you have been accused, then you are going to need a strong defense to combat your charges. Secure the representation of a San Francisco federal crime lawyer from Okabe & Haushalter. Our firm is no stranger to large, complex cases; we have even been involved in high profile cases such as the O.J. Simpson trial. You can trust our experience in the field to fight effectively for you.