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Financial Literacy - Protecting your identity Click Here
TOOLS AND RESOURCES
Identity fraud-fighting tool kit
Use these work sheets and other resources to battle identity theft and fraud.
Protecting your identity

Glossary of identity theft terms

6. Dual-factor identification rules -- Requires banks to implement some form of additional password in addition to the standard username and password combination. It's often accomplished by presenting a picture or something else that the consumer chooses in addition to their password in order to recognize the bank.

7. Firewall -- A security system that protects individual computers or networks from intruders. Firewalls can be either hardware or software or a combination of the two.

8. Identity cloning -- When a fraudster lives as the victim, getting married, working, paying taxes and possibly committing crimes.

9. Identity fraud -- Occurs when a transaction happens in a person's name without their knowledge.

10. Identity theft -- An umbrella term used for everything from a one-time fraudulent credit card transaction to identity cloning. Technically refers only to situations when identifying information is taken and used for fraudulent purposes.

11. Image spam -- A spam e-mail whose content contains text embedded inside an image.

12. Malware -- A general term for malicious software. Examples include viruses, Trojan horses, spyware and worms.

13. Nigerian scam -- Also called the 419 after the code in Nigerian criminal law, the Nigerian scam is an advance fee scam in which unsolicited e-mails claim to offer large sums of money in return for helping someone in trouble.

14. Phishing -- A scam perpetrated via e-mail wherein the scammer spoofs a well-known brand or entity, for instance a big national bank or the IRS. The e-mails contain a link to a Web page which purports to be the legitimate site and asks for personal information.

15. Plug-in -- Software or hardware that is used to modify or add to an existing program. Flash and QuickTime are both plug-ins for Web browsers, for example.

16. Red flag rules -- Regulations included in the Fair Credit Reporting Act requiring financial institutions to institute a program to identify red flags signaling possible ID theft or fraud.

17. Social Security number tumbling -- Taking a valid Social Security number and changing it slightly. For instance, 123-45-6789 is changed to 123-45-6790. This is a technique used in a new type of identity fraud called synthetic identity theft.

-- Posted: April 21, 2008
 
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