How Identity Theft Can Damage Your Personality

Oct 11, 2021 6 Min Read
a person in black hoodie using a laptop
Source:

Photo by Bermix Studio https://unsplash.com/photos/wJ7atxTNeQE

"If they found a way to get in, they stole everything."

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article belong to an independent guest author and not Leaderonomics, its directors, affiliates, or employees.

It can’t happen to me; I don’t go on weird sites. 
Why would someone waste their time to attack my start-up - there’s nothing to steal at this stage. 
I’ll get to this later, right now there are more important things to worry about.

 
These (and more) are the thoughts that go through users’ minds when they decide to continue using the internet without proper protection. However, the statistics show that identity fraud incidents increased around 45% in 2020 (compared to 2019). This happened in the backdrop of the pandemic and cybercriminals didn’t spare anyone. If they found a way to get in, they stole everything. 
 
Data theft is big business and every bit of information counts. Ill-intended actors use information from data leaks, ransomware and phishing attacks, and infected devices to build complete user profiles (or identities). When these are complete, they either sell to the highest bidder or use these profiles to commit identity fraud. 
 
So, are you comfortable knowing that maybe, somewhere, someone has your SSN and bank account and can do whatever they want in your name? If this doesn’t impress you, here are a few ways an ID thief can damage your online reputation with implications in the real life.

Financial Problems

ID theft cases usually include a financial element (depending on the data leaked to cybercriminals). This means the victim could have their bank accounts drained or could be charged for products/services they didn’t order or receive. 
 
Plus, ill-intended actors can use your ID to take a loan, buy a car, take a job, and so on. Without a proper identity securing or ID verification service to keep track of your financial identity online, the risk to become a victim is quite high.

Stalking & Harassment

There is a common practice among cybercriminals to use a person’s email account (once they have access to it) to send emails to the entire list of friends and acquaintances asking for money or other favours. 
 
Plus, depending on the information they find in your account, they can go on and attack your friends’ accounts or stalk them with aggressive messages and requests. 

Professional Reputation

Nowadays you have to be extremely careful of what you post online (especially if you are a public person). If you have a big social media following or an established personal brand, you may lose everything in case of an ID theft situation. 
 
Cybercriminals who infiltrate your life (and accounts) can easily post negative stuff on your social media channels or even make public sensitive, confidential information that harms your position and online reputation. 
 
Additionally, someone using your ID can wreak havoc at your job by using your employee credentials to log in to the company’s network and infect it. At first glance, it will seem that you are the one who did the deed, which may even attract some legal penalties. 

Physical Toll

People who have been victims of ID theft report they are more stressed and anxious than before the incident. Plus, if someone did something illegal in your name, you risk getting fined or even doing time if you can’t prove it wasn’t you. 
 
Plus, there is a lot at stake if your credit report is affected. Sadly, the negative effects continue to linger for years, even after you managed to prove the ID theft. Also, if your credit report gets damaged, this will show up every time you want to buy something using a loan (like a car or a house).

Considering the rising prevalence of identity theft and the potential consequences it can have on individuals' lives, it is wise to explore the option of an identity theft protection service. In this regard, individuals probably should look at CompleteID, a comprehensive and reliable solution that can help safeguard personal information and provide peace of mind.

Wrap Up

In most cases, ID theft is not something people take seriously until it’s too late to do something in terms of prevention. Still, with the pandemic still going strong and the current economic and social instabilities, we have to care more about our own safety online. 

Supplementary read: How Are We Behaving In The Digital World?

Wow, that sure made me applied padlock on everything! But, hey, why not indulge yourself in the new Psyched! Live stream in conjunction with Spooktober that has rolled in:

Further info: Do you desire to accelerate your growth? Look no further. Necole is a state of the art learning platform that curates personalised learning just for you. To find out more about necole, click here or email info@leaderonomics.com

Share This

Alt

This article is published by the editors of Leaderonomics.com with the consent of the guest author. 

Alt

You May Also Like

A group of colleagues, with the work policy that allows freedom and flexibility to be working based on flexible work arrangements remotely or on site

Generation Disconnected: Data on Gen Z in the Workplace

By Ryan Pendell and Sara Vander Helm. Gen Z and young millennials prioritise work-life balance and wellbeing over pay and benefits, but experience stress and burnout. Read here how employers can support their wellbeing, meet their needs and support their long-term success.

May 04, 2023 4 Min Read

Man meditating at work, balancing work and life, integrating work and life

Work-Life Integration - Are We Ready For It?

Connie Lim, People & Culture Lead of Leaderonomics discusses why employers should consider work-life integration within their organisations, even if they are traditionalists, and how it generates value for the organisation.

Jun 25, 2023 31 Min Podcast

dave ulrich

The Leaderonomics Show: How Is The State Of HR In Malaysia T

Malaysia is in perpectual flux. Whilst there is no stable government in place, businesses continue to push forward. However, one function that is not truly moving forward is the HR function. Join HR expert, Dave Ulrich together with Malaysia HR leader of the year, Roshan Thiran, as they discuss the state of HR in Malaysia

Sep 12, 2021 14 Min Video

Be a Leader's Digest Reader