by Robert Siciliano | shared from Examiner.com
Despite what you may assume, most celebrities and other extremely wealthy individuals do not relish living in a fish bowl, with every move scrutinized. While some certainly do flaunt their wealth, the vast majority do not want you dropping by their home or following them into the bathroom.
The average people who post their whereabouts online, constantly update their status, or list themselves in the phone book generally have nothing to hide. But in a celebrity-obsessed culture, the rich and famous are frequently stalked or harassed, and, since their personal data is so readily available, their identities are more likely to be stolen.
Every seemingly innocuous personal detail available to a criminal can be used to obtain more information, until that criminal has developed a full profile of the potential victim. A series of little crumbs ultimately leads to a loaf of bread.
The solution is called “security through obscurity.” Now, that statement might mean something different in certain circles, but in this case it means that the best way to secure your identity is to hide, buried in the abyss of the Internet, under assumed names, behind a corporate identity. This doesn’t mean using a stolen identity, but rather creating a corporate alias.
Once you have established a corporation, which is not difficult, you can operate under the business’ name to apply for credit, set up utilities, purchase property, and execute most other transactions. Or you might continue using your own name, but obfuscate your role by listing yourself as a low-level employee instead of CEO.
Regardless of the methods you may use to obscure your identity, you cannot hide your device reputation. Unless you rely exclusively on cash for every transaction and never access the Internet, your computer, smartphone, or tablet has an established online reputation. This is a good thing because it validates your transactions without having to go into your personal details. For example, if you use a corporate credit card to make an online purchase, the retailer can use device reputation technology to analyze the device’s level of risk and determine whether it has a history of fraudulent behavior.
If a retailer is using iovation’s ReputationManager 360, they will know immediately when a customer is attempting to make a purchase with a laptop masking its real location, and if it has been involved in fraud in the past at other iovation-protected businesses. This transaction can be routed to a manual review queue proactively in real-time, giving businesses a chance to prevent losses before they occur.
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Identity Thieves Target The Rich And Famous
Identity theft is a major problem that is just as serious for the rich and famous as it is for anyone else. This is a serious problem that is taking the world by storm. The FBI calls it the fastest growing crime in America and no one is immune.
The rich and famous are easy prey because of their celebrity status. They often find themselves caught up in elaborate schemes that make them the target of criminals who want to make fast money or use a celebrity’s identity to enhance their own social standing. In the end, the celebrity suffers the consequences.
Identity thieves develop well thought out plans to defraud celebrities of their money, use their celebrity status for personal gain, or plot to destroy a celebrity’s reputation and good credit rating.
No matter how safe you feel, it is still fairly easy for someone to steal your identity right from under your nose. All they need is your name, address, and social security number. If you are not careful with this information, it can be taken from places that you think are safe and secure.
It has been reported that police officers, personal security guards, maids, butlers, gardeners, cable television installers, plumbers and other repairmen are all possible identity thieves. The list of people who can still your identity is endless and includes close friends and relatives.
They can borrow money, apply for credit cards, buy cars, travel, and finance a lavish lifestyle by using information that isn’t that hard to get. All you have to do is leave your wallet or hand bag laying around when you have a visitor in your home.
Most people are trusting. If identity theft has never happened to you, taking the necessary steps to protect yourself may not register high on the list of things you should be thinking about. Besides, who would think a favorite uncle would do such a thing?
If you think you are too famous to have your identity stolen, take a look at the list of names below. Who could ever imagine anyone stealing the identities of these rich and famous people? It happened!
- Robert Di Niro
- Warren Buffett
- Steven Spielberg
- Tiger Woods
- New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg
- Paris Hilton
- Michael Jordan
- Martha Stewart
- Will Smith
- Ted Turner
- Ophrah Winfrey
- H. Ross Perot
- Michael Eisner
- Ruben Studdard
And the list goes on and on. It doesn’t matter if you are a CEO of large corporation, a high profile politician, a famous athlete, or a movie star. The more money and fame you have, the more likely you are to be targeted.
To protect yourself, always use caution. Never leave your valuables laying around, no matter who is in your home. Be extra careful about throwing bills and personal documents in the trash and be extra careful about giving personal information such as your social security number over the internet.
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