The National Trial Lawyers - Badge
Top Lawyer 2017 - Badge

Frequently Asked Questions on Identity Theft

At Jackson Law, we understand the urgency and importance of safeguarding your personal information. Our aim is to equip you with the knowledge necessary to prevent identity theft and to provide guidance on how to react if your identity is compromised.

What We Cover:

  • Methods of identity theft occurrence
  • Strategies for identity theft prevention
  • Likelihood and potential risks of identity theft
  • Immediate steps if you’re a victim of identity theft
  • Legal implications if an identity thief commits a crime under your name
  • Federal and state laws against identity theft

How Does Identity Theft Happen?

The unfortunate reality is that there are numerous ways for nefarious individuals to steal your personal information. Such methods include:

  • Purloining personal belongings, such as your wallet or purse
  • Redirecting your mail by illegally submitting a change of address form
  • Swiping credit offers from your garbage without shredding
  • Claiming false pretenses to acquire your credit report
  • Observing and recording personal identification numbers (PINs) at machines or over calls
  • Deceptive telemarketing, preying on the unsuspecting to reveal personal information
  • Compromising a company’s computer systems where your data is stored
  • Motivated by spite, someone you know might misuse your information

The digital age has spawned new threats: Online identity search companies sell comprehensive personal profiles, which can include your most sensitive information, posing a grave threat to your identity security.

How Do I Prevent Identity Theft?

Jackson Law cares about your privacy. Here’s how you can protect yourself:

  • Carry only necessary identification; leave your Social Security card at home.
  • Opt out of pre-printing Social Security or driver’s license numbers on checks.
  • Utilize initials instead of your full first name on checks.
  • Prefer using a P.O. Box or work address over your home address on checks.
  • When referencing a credit card account on a check, only include the last four digits.
  • Adopt a secure mailbox solution and send outgoing mail from the post office.
  • Request and inspect your credit report annually.
  • Frequently update passwords, avoiding easily deciphered ones.
  • Scrutinize bills and statements for unauthorized charges.
  • Never discard credit card receipts publicly. Shred or tear up unwanted credit offers.
  • Exercise caution with personal information over phone calls you didn’t initiate.
  • Choose to do business with companies that value your privacy.
  • Personally collect new checks from your bank.
  • Avoid sharing sensitive information online. If it’s published without consent, demand its removal.

What If My Identity Is Stolen?

Take the reins immediately:

  • Complete the FTC’s identity theft affidavit and notify pertinent institutions.
  • File a report with the police, securing multiple copies for future use.
  • Close and replace credit, ATM, and phone cards.
  • Alert credit bureaus, requesting a fraud alert and your credit reports.
  • Report any stolen checks to relevant authorities.
  • Verify your Social Security earnings statement for any misuse.
  • Obtain a new driver’s license number if necessary.

Persistence and proactivity in resolving this crime is paramount. Do not acquiesce to paying for fraudulent charges. Insist on thorough action from authorities and financial institutions.

Am I Liable for Crimes Committed in My Name?

While financial liability for unauthorized credit card purchases is typically capped at a small amount, the true cost includes immense effort and emotional toll to restore your good name. The challenges can extend to wrongful criminal allegations and the ensuing complexities in proving your innocence.

Yes, the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act of 1998 criminalized using someone else’s identity for unlawful activities, bringing in federal agencies to tackle high-level or wide-reaching violations. Many states also possess legislation to combat identity theft, and where specific laws may not exist, related statutes often apply.

To Learn More About Identity Theft

Federal and state laws, current cases, and alerts on scams are consolidated at the federal government’s identity theft hub: The FTC ( and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse ( are excellent resources for reports and information. Specific guidance for California residents can be found at the Office of Privacy Protection’s website:

If you find yourself needing assistance or have further questions regarding identity theft, do not hesitate to contact Jackson Law at 650-587-8556. Our team is dedicated to providing you with the legal support required to protect your identity and navigate the complexities should theft occur.

Contact Us

Fill out the contact form or call us at 650-587-8556 or 866-985-4850 
to schedule your consultation.

Leave Us a Message

We Accept the Following Payment Solutions