Identity crime – where criminals steal someone’s identity or create a false identity – is increasing, and it’s believed that one in four UK adults has fallen victim to this crime. If a criminal gets hold of someone’s personal data, such as a name, address, or bank details, they use this information to open accounts, get credit cards or apply for documents such as passports and driving licences.
City of London Police has launched a campaign to make people aware of identity crime, and has produced advice to help you protect your personal information. Having your identity stolen can be very distressing, as well inconvenient to put right. Victims often find that money has been removed from their bank or their account has been taken over, a fraudulent passport or driving license has been created in their name, or loans, mortgages and mobile phone contracts have been set-up using their identity.
To help you avoid becoming a victim of identity crime, City of London police has produced advice to help you protect your personal information. This includes pointers on creating safe passwords, protecting internet devices, dealing with unsolicited phone calls and emails, and safely storing and disposing of mail.