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Unfortunately, many criminals are becoming more sophisticated, making it harder to keep up with the measures they take to steal personal information. Because the internet is constantly evolving, digital hackers are too! As such, understanding the most common ways hackers can obtain your sensitive details to commit identity theft can help you take the necessary steps to protect yourself. The following blog explores standard methods hackers use and how a San Diego identity theft lawyer can help you during these challenging times.

What Is Identity Theft?

Identity theft is a crime that occurs in which someone uses the personal information of another person in a nefarious manner. Though this is most commonly used to commit financial fraud, some may use it to commit crimes under the name of their victims. For example, someone may use your personal information to take out loans in your name or make unauthorized purchases using your credentials.

While there are some ways that identity theft can occur offline, such as thieves stealing mail or sifting through trash, it is most often associated with online hacking.

What Are Common Ways Hackers Obtain Information?

One of the most common ways hackers obtain information is through data breaches. This occurs when an unauthorized party gains access to information. Hackers can then take this information, whether they’re email addresses, passwords, birth dates, or social security numbers. to commit identity theft. Similarly, the thief may sell this information to others over the internet, so they can use this information to commit fraud.

Identity theft can also occur when someone uses an unsecured Wi-Fi network. When the network you’re on does not have adequate security measures, hackers can access your connected phone to steal information, such as any bank account information stored on your device, passwords, or other sensitive information. Though this most commonly occurs when connected to public Wi-Fi, if your home network is not secure, hackers can access this as well.

Finally, thieves may be able to hack into bank ATMs and steal the information patrons input into the machine. This could involve using skimmers to glean the card details or hacking the machine to steal the PIN number.

What Should I Do if My Identity’s Been Compromised?

If you believe your personal information has been compromised and you have been a victim of identity theft, taking the necessary measures to protect yourself is crucial. This includes placing a freeze on your credit report to ensure no additional loans can be taken out in your name.  You can also dispute the information on your report to have it removed.

Unfortunately, identity theft can be life-altering. As such, it’s essential to ensure you contact an experienced consumer attorney to help you through these complex issues. You may find that you’ve suffered damages as a result of the theft, and if you’re looking to recover compensation, ensuring you have legal representation is crucial.

At the Law Offices of Barthel & Batherl, we understand how complex these issues can be. That’s why we’re dedicated to providing the best legal representation possible to help you through any legal problems you have. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.