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BBB: Synthetic ID theft, a new trick for scammers

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (BBB) -- Identity theft is an ever-evolving crime. As credit bureaus and individuals catch on to the schemes of identity thieves, the con artists simply modify their tactics. Scammers are now combining information from multiple individuals to invent a false identity, a technique called “synthetic” identity theft. It’s so hard to detect, you might be a victim and not even know it.  

How the Scam Works

Scammers pull together a stolen Social Security or Social Insurance number (often belonging to a minor or someone with no credit history), the address of an abandoned property, and a fake name and birth date. Using this information, the scammer applies for a credit card. Initially, they will be declined since they don’t have a credit profile, but this creates a record of a “person” that doesn’t actually exist.


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