Staged Miami Car Accidents and Identity Fraud?
Are identity thieves staging car collisions to steal your personal information and your identity? Experts believe so. According to some experts, some identity thieves are staging car accidents – usually minor fender benders – in order to get personal information from a target. The ruse works because after a Miami car accident, victims are usually shaken up and provide more information than is needed. When identity thieves get insurance information, a target’s name, number, address, and other personal information, they often have enough information to steal that person’s identity. With a stolen identity, the thief may be able to access credit card accounts, bank accounts, and other forms of money or may be able to open accounts in a target’s name. To prevent this from happening to you after a Miami truck accident or car accident, follow these expert tips:
1) Be on the alert for signs of a staged accident. If a car seems to have time to avoid a car accident but bumps into you anyway or if you see anything else suspicious, proceed with caution. Document as much as possible – take photos of the other car and be sure to get contact information for the driver and any witnesses.
2) Give out only the minimum information you need to. According to The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), you only need to provide your first and last name and the name and phone number of your insurance company. Giving out your number and your address or other personal details, while seemingly innocent, is enough for someone to pose as you online.
3) Stay calm and be on the lookout for someone trying to get more information than needed. Fraudsters often take advantage of the stress and panic of a Miami car collision to dupe you into providing more information than you need to. It is best to stay calm and only provide the minimum needed. Be wary if someone presses you to provide more identifying information, especially if they ask for things such as birth date and other identifying information. If you do give out personal details, write them out yourself or spell them as the other driver writes them down. Never hand over your driver’s license or other ID – it contains enough information for a fraudster to steal your identity.
4) Check your credit score twice a year, and be careful to check your credit score and credit report after a Miami traffic accident. Your credit report, readily available from any credit agency, will show you if anyone has tried to open a new account in your name. There are three major credit agencies in the US, and you may wish to periodically order a report from each, since each agency has a different way of gathering data.