Federal Trade Commission Says These Steps Can Help Prevent Identity Theft Via Cell Phones

By  //  June 12, 2016

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Cell Phones Easy Way to steal identity

ABOVE VIDEO: Identity Theft News as well as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) create numerous videos like this one to assist the consumer in avoiding identity theft. Deter-Detect-Defend (Identity Theft News Video)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA  –  Identity theft can happen to you – and your mobile phone. It has even happened to the Federal Trade Commisison’s Chief Technologist, Lorrie Cranor, and other FTC colleagues.

How does it happen? You might get a bill for a new mobile phone that you didn’t order. The thief used your personal information to open a new account. Or maybe your phone stops working entirely because a thief used your information to upgrade to a new phone and then shut off the phone you’re using.

What can you do to reduce the risk of mobile phone identity theft? Follow these easy steps.

Establish a PIN or password that must be used before making changes on your mobile phone account. Each carrier offers this feature in a slightly different way.

CLICK HERE to read the FTC’s Chief Technologist’s blog post, which has more details on the options carriers offer.

You must also be wary of phishing scams. Thieves may call pretending to be your mobile phone carrier, asking for codes from your phone or other personal information. Don’t give this information over the phone unless you initiated the call. And make sure to call your carrier at the number listed on your bill, not a number given to you over the phone.

Check your mobile phone and credit card bills each month for signs of fraud. If you see something suspicious, immediately contact your mobile phone carrier’s fraud department and safely dispose of mobile phones.

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When you’re ready to get a new phone, don’t just throw away the old one. First, remove all personal information to make sure it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Then, consider recycling or donating your old phone.

If you think you’ve been a victim of identity theft, visit, CLICK HERE to report the theft and get a personal recovery plan.