The Growing Problem of Phone Account Hijacking Records of identity thefts reported to the FTC provide some insight into how often thieves hijack a mobile phone account or open a new mobile phone account in a victim’s name.
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I called my mobile carrier back several times over the next few days to finish cleaning up this mess.
One of my phones had ended up with the wrong phone number and the other one no longer had voice mail.
A few weeks ago an unknown person walked into a mobile phone store, claimed to be me, asked to upgrade my mobile phones, and walked out with two brand new i Phones assigned to my telephone numbers.
My phones immediately stopped receiving calls, and I was left with a large bill and the anxiety and fear of financial injury that spring from identity theft.
A few days later I received an email about mobile phone insurance that the thief had apparently added to my account.
After three trips to my carrier’s retail stores and many hours on the phone, my carrier eventually fixed all the problems and refunded the fraudulent charges.
A store employee explained that a thief claiming to be me had gone into a phone store and “upgraded” my two phones to the most expensive i Phone models available and transferred my phone numbers to the new i Phones.
I called my mobile carrier’s fraud department and reported what happened.
By January 2016, that number had increased to 2,658 such incidents, representing 6.3% of all identity thefts reported to the FTC that month.