Alarming rise in identity theft cases - The Tribune

The Tribune: Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is not the only one crying hoarse about her identity theft on a popular social networking site. With jobs becoming the most important asset in these turbulent economic times, corporates, too, are up against the growing breed of ‘identity thieves’ and ‘identity frauds’. In order to present a better portfolio and get a nice job in the corporate sector, a number of job seekers are either forging their identities or impersonating as somebody else. Increasingly, these job seekers first steal the identity proofs of the person (degrees,/date of birth certificates, relieving letters from previous employees), present these as part of their CVs and then seek jobs.

Ajay Trehan, CEO, AuthBridge, a credentials screening and risk management consultancy, informed TNS that post-recession they have witnessed an alarming increase of 15 per cent in the cases of identity thefts. “While conducting background checks for those seeking jobs in corporate houses, who are our clients, we are coming across several such cases of identity thefts. The phenomenon has become more pronounced during this quarter when jobs are getting scarce. Most of the cases detected by us have seen people impersonating as either a more successful sibling or friend, and mainly for seeking jobs in the IT and ITeS sector,” he said. Trehan said the phenomenon was not just restricted stealing the identity of a close person, but fraudsters have found several ways to steal your identity – stealing wallets containing your identification, hacking emails, including bank and credit card statements, using your personal information shared on the net or by scamming you. Also, cyber-thieves appear to be ramping up their operations to take advantage of the economic downturn and steal a few identities, and then sell them, he added. “Fudging of relieving letters issued to employees is also quite common. Many fraudsters procure relieving letters of unsuspecting persons and fudge the names so as to use them as their own documents,” he said.