Criminals are waiting to sign contracts in your name using a picture from your identification card.

 Sharing a picture of your ID with others is risky. According to federal police's Christophe Van Bortel, a cybercrime expert, in the podcast "The hour of truth" and on Radio 1. Criminals use these images, among other things, to apply for loans or telecom subscriptions in your name. How can I avoid falling for the trap? And if you are a victim, what can you do?



 

The front and back of an identity document are often copied or photographed by thieves, according to Christophe Van Bortel in "The hour of truth." "This could be anything from a passport, driver's license, or identity card. To open bank accounts or apply for telecom subscriptions, they use someone's data.

Identity fraud, according to Van Bortel, typically occurs at particular times. The Antwerp district police have received more reports over the last two years, particularly in the autumn. "The months from September to January are covered. We are unable to immediately explain why that is the case. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide specific numbers, but this is undoubtedly a trend."

 

It is astounding that thieves are now also using identity theft to sign energy contracts, the author continues. "They sign the contract in your name, but they communicate with the supplier using, for instance, a different email address. When the victims get a statement from an unidentified supplier, they then file a declaration. Energy contract declarations are still a minority.

 

How do they work?

 

  • Phishing
  • False job offers
  • Second-hand platforms : Here criminals pretend to be a suspicious buyer or seller.

 

What can you do about it?

 

Van Bortel advises you to be cautious before handing someone a copy of your identification. Ask yourself if it is really necessary. "Certainly, you should never give a copy to anyone on second-hand platforms.

 

Is there a job opening or is it necessary for the organization? Don't attempt to send a "clean" copy then. In this manner, when others receive it, they are unable to do anything with it. Additionally, you can add a filter or watermark that includes the current day's date. Anyone can download that app independently from the app stores.


Identity fraud victims should report it to police. "But we know that such an ID continues to circulate online, you have no control," says Van Bortel. "Replace your ID. Your new card won't have the stolen number. If strange things happen, you can prove it wasn't you. Change your email if they use it. Even if tedious."

NWS, VRT. “Criminelen Liggen Op De Loer Om Met Een Foto Van Je ID-kaart in Jouw Naam Contracten Af Te Sluiten: Zo Kan Je Het Vermijden.” vrtnws.be, 19 Nov. 2022, www.vrt.be/vrtnws/nl/2022/11/16/identiteitsfraude-najaar-energie.

 

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